Top Contenders for the 2018 Grand National

by Rich Nilsen

The Grand National at Aintree Racecourse is a test of endurance, stamina and class like no other race in the world. Dating back to 1839 in England, the prestigious horse race challenges a large field of runners to contest the hurdles and flats over four grueling miles. The winner of the Grand National on April 14, 2018 will be a true champion, and their name will never be forgotten.


According to America’s Best Racing the Grand National is watched by over 500 million people around the globe, and roughly two-thirds of the adult population in the United Kingdom will have some type of wager on the great race. Like with the Kentucky Derby in the United States, you have to have a rooting interest in this thrilling contest.  Bet £10, get £30 when you bet on Grand National.


Currently three horses are garnering the majority of the action in the future books, led by the Nigel Twiston-Davies-trained Blaklion.  The winner of the Becher Chase stands at 10-1 in the future betting with most of the international bookmakers but is as high as 12-1 with William Hill.  He has won over this course, demonstrating an important affinity for the track, and he enters off an excellent prep race where he finished second.


The co-favorite in the wagering with Blaklion is Total Recall (Ire). He is also listed at 10-1 but is higher in some spots. The nine-year-old son of Westerner has won three in a row since moving into the barn of W. P. Mullins. He is the hot horse in sharp form.


Steeplechase scene black whiteAt the time of this publication the third choice for the Grand National at 14-1 is The Last Samuri (Ire).  Now ten years old, the gelding will take another crack at the big race.  He was the highweight in last year’s event, packing over 160lbs, but he finished a disappointing 16th.  The Last Samuri hasn’t visited the winner’s circle since 2016, however, and this is a tough spot to get back on the winning track.


A dark horse in the wagering could be the French gelding Alpha Des Obeaux (Fr).  He’s not the most consistent runner but he has been racing regularly and on his best day, he merits a chance for a piece of the Grand National.


When it comes to riders for the great race, look at talented jockeys such as Ruby Walsh, who won his Grand National debut at age 20 back in 2000 aboard Papillon.  Walsh won again in 2005 and has placed in other attempts at Aintree.  Other riders to keep a close eye on include Jason Maguire and Timmy Murphy, both of whom compete for the sharp barn of trainer Donald McCain.


Focus your Grand National wagers on horses between the age of nine and 11.  The youth and experience of seven and eight-year-olds often takes its toll in this race, and the oldest runners (age 12 and beyond) have proven to be a poor investment.  The senior runners may hit the board, but they rarely capture the top prize.


Tune in on April 14th for this amazing race as up to 40 runners will attempt to contest up to 16 fences of varying heights and widths.  There is no race like the Grand National, so sit back, place a wager and best of luck!

Who will take the Grand National trophy home?

by International Correspondent

This is one of the most frequently asked questions these days. Although lots of us would like to get an answer immediately but we will have to wait for the 14th April, the Grand National Day. Although it is a 3-day event, our primary focus will be on the finals day. For those who may watch this event for the first time, it is a two-lap race. 1st lap has 16 gates, while 2nd has only 14 (riders have to miss out two gates in 2nd lap). Aintree racecourse is one of the most exciting racetracks ever. In fact, it has 6 famous fences. Although not the toughest, the most known fence of the course is ‘Foinavon fence’. This fence got its name after a horse ‘Foinavon’ which avoided mass pile-up on the 23rd fence and took the trophy for itself. If you don’t believe in miracles, you better start. Odds for Foinavon to win were 100/1. He was an outsider. The 1967 race is remembered for this and perhaps the biggest upset in the history of the event.

Another famous fence is fence number 15, ‘The Chair fence’, which is 5ft 3in high. It is the highest fence of the course and is well known because, unfortunately, two jockeys were killed here. Joseph Wynne and George Ede died at this fence in 1862. Another rider Paddy Farrell fractured his spine in a fall at The Chair fence. However his efforts led to the creation of the injured jockeys’ fund.

There is no better way to increase the excitement of this race then betting on it. If you want to improve your chances of winning, you might look into Grand National free bets. You can check the latest Grand National betting offers here like Get your money back if your horse doesn’t run by Betvictor or Coral’s Faller money back offer. There are many more such exciting offers available online here.

Here are some interesting facts about Grand National History. The oldest horse to win this race was Peter Simple at the age of 15, while the youngest was 5 years old (5 of them). 48 winners were 9 years old and that is almost 30% of all time winners. The race was ended before 9th minute only once in history (2015 Many Clouds) of the race. Abd  El-Kader, The Colonel, Reynoldstown and Red Rurn were the only horses to win back to back titles. 5 times in the history, winner was an outsider with an odd of 100/1. The most recent outsider to win was Mon Mome in 2009. Leighton Aspel, Irish Jockey won back to back titles in 2014 and 2015, but with two different horses – Pineau De Re and Many Clouds. George Stevens won most titles (5). He rode 5 Grand National winners: Freetrader (1856), Emblem (1863), Emblematic (1864), The Colonel (1869 and 1870).

Now let’s talk about this year’s prediction. My tip would definitely be Blaklion. He is 9-year-old horse. He has total 24 runs, winning 9 of them and as first runner up in 5 other. His win percentage is incredible 37% percent. So he has lot of experience, which is necessary for a big competition like this one. The stats are also on his side, as mentioned earlier; almost 30% of winners at the Grand National were 9 years old horses. With the current odd of 10/1, it is also bookies first pick. Second pick from me would be The Last Samuri, horse who managed to finish 2nd in 2016 Grand National. After bad 2017 where he finished 16th, this year might be his. Odd of 16/1 seems interesting and definitely worth to try. If you are really optimistic, you may want to try betting on Alpha Des Obeaux, French 9-year-old horse who claimed 5 trophies in his career.

Although it is not clear who will win this year’s Grand National event, one thing is sure. We will have an opportunity to watch great and exciting 10 minutes of horse racing. If you like to read more about this event you can find relevant news on