Grand National 2017 Tips & Facts
Valentines day was a big day in the Priestley household and not because it was 25years ago I got engaged to Mrs P in Paris but far more importantly it was the day the weights were revealed for the Grand National. I have a fairly decent record in the race with West Tip in 86 my first real winner though I do remember backing Grittar in 82 as a 12yo kid. My first National memory is 81 when Aldaniti and Bob Champion won and of course 83 for Corbiere and Jenny Pitman.
In '89 I had a few quid on Little Polvier for local jockey Jimmy Frost but 1990 was when I really got the bug not only was Mr Frisk my main bet but I also had a straight t/c with Durham Edition and Rinus. Seagram 91, Party Politics 92, race void 93, Minnehoma 94 & Royal Athlete 95 were all no good for me but in 96 I bounced back with Rough Quest made famous by winning jockey Mick Fitzgerald and his quote of riding the winner was better than sex.
1997 was the famous Monday race and Lord Gyllene my worst result as a bookie cost me thousands. Earth Summit 98, Bobbyjo 99 & Papillon 2000 were all no good, but 2001 was the slog in the bog when Red Marauder won tipped by me AP at 100-1, only 2 actually completed though both Blowing Wind and Papillon remounted to finish 3rd and 4th. Bindaree '02 & Monty's Pass '03 were no good then 2004 Amberleigh House was a nice 33-1 AP winner. Hedgehunter, Numbersixvalverde, Silver Birch,Comply Or Die, Mon Mome, Don't Push It, Ballabriggs & Neptune Coolonges were all bad results for me but then 2013 I had AP 220-1 on Auroras Encore which helped redress the balance then last few years Pineau De Re, the ill fated Many Clouds & Rule The World have all been no good to me so this year I'm due a decent winner.
Aintree Grand National 2017 Preview + Ante Post Tips
So what about a preview of the the Aintree Grand National 2017? Well I've had my eye on tipping a couple of possible contenders for this years race, whilst most people look to those winning races and saying he'll make a National type, I'm looking at the also rans thinking whats his long term target. When the weights were announced last night I was delighted with the weights allotted to 2 of my list and its those 2 that I'm going to start with as I build up an AP portfolio for the race. Now they are not guaranteed to be runners as the race is 10 weeks away plus Cheltenham in between so anything can happen but they are in the top 40 weights so guaranteed a run should it be there target.
At this stage my main fancy and betting tip is BALLYNAGOUR from David Pipes stable. Last year he ran in the race and UR at the 19th fence, he ran off a mark of 157 and carried 11st 2. Although it was a long way from home he was passing horses and moving into contention having been held up out the back for the first circuit, he was still travelling strongly when unshipping Tom Scudamore. This year after 3 questionable rides/runs all round Cheltenham his mark has dropped dramatically to 148 giving him just 10st 6 this year the same weight and mark Rule The World won from last year. I believe this has been his target all season and those runs round Cheltenham were by design. He meets last years runner up The Last Samuarai on 21lb better terms this year. He's currently 100-1 5 places with PaddyPower and was 200-1 on BF last night though I believe that has all gone now and he's around the 100-1 mark on the exchanges at the moment. He's currently number 41 in the list but it would be very very unlikely for him to get a run should he be an intended runner.
The other I had my eye on is Irish trained, in fact 20 of the top 40 weights are trained in Ireland. Gordon Elliot has the top weight Outlander who he has been reported as saying won't run under top weight but it's one of his other runners that takes my eye. I really like the look of CLARCAM he's a classy individual who managed to win last time having contested a fair few of the major handicap chases run in Ireland. He's been given a mark of 154 running off 10st12 which I think is a very decent weight for him. Long time followers of mine will remember him for falling at the Cheltenham festival in 2014 at the 2nd last when running away in the Fred Winter.I'd tipped him that day on my Ante Post Lucky 15 for Cheltenham, he was still travelling very powerfully when crumbling on landing. Since then he's won 7 more races including a Grade 1 chase at Aintree that was his 2nd Grade 1 chase win. As you can see he has a touch of class the obvious question would be the trip as his last 4 wins have all been at 2m4 so the extra 15F is certainly an unknown and would give reason for a little doubt but at 100-1(200-1 on exchanges) I think he's worth a few quid Ante Post and becomes my second free tips for the Grand National.
There may well be others I add to this tips list as I like to have a decent Ante post book before the day usually 5 or 6 that will be running for me at very decent odds.
A quick look down the weights, there are a few others that at this stage look interesting namely More of That off 11st01(33-1), Saphir Du Rheu 11st(50-1), Blaklion 10st10(33-1) & The Young Master 10st 8(33-1)
BALLYNAGOUR 100-1 5 PLACES PADDYPOWER 1PT EW
CLARCAM 100-1 4 PLACES LADBROKES CORALS 1PT EW (updated - now a none runner)
Further Grand National selections to follow.
**More tips added 05/04/2017**