Aintree Festival 2024-Day3-13042024-sportpreview

Aintree Festival 2024 – Day 3 13/04/2024

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Aintree Festival 2024 – 13/04/2024
  • Vanilier
  • Mr Incredible
  • Limerick Lace

Aintree Festival 2024 – Day 3 13/04/2024 – Grand National 2024 Summary

A reduced maximum field of 34 runners will head to post for the Aintree Festival 2024 Grand
National and this year’s version looks as though it will provide a stern test in the prevailing
ground conditions. It was interesting to note that 22 runners lined up for the Foxhunters
Chase on Thursday and only 10 horses completed the course. Winning jockey Derek
O’Connor strongly suggested that the Grand National will provide an even tougher test and
so stamina is likely to be even more at a premium in this year’s renewal. That said, the
ground was suggested to be drying out on Day Two of the festival and punters are
encouraged to check the official going description on Day Three and before they make their
final selections.
And so where to start? Well, last year’s winner Corach Rambler ticks a number of boxes for
obvious reasons and he has been well supported to follow-up. However will his recent brave
run in the Cheltenham Gold Cup leave a mark? Last season’s Irish Grand National winner I
Am Maximus also looks to have the right profile for the race and as he is the choice of stable
jockey Paul Townend, this only adds to the confidence behind the horse. The same owner
and trainer combination of JP McManus and Willie Mullins also have the strongly fancied
Meetingofthewaters lining up with plenty of confidence behind him and the ultra-consistent
Panda Boy will carry plenty of punters’ money in an effort to finally bag the big prize that his
consistency deserves.
And so whichever way the race is analysed, it does seem that a number of factors including
course form, proven stamina and big field experience counts for plenty in this particular
race. In addition to this, a look at past renewals of the Grand National can often prove
useful and when analysing the ten year trends associated with the most recent winners, we
can learn plenty from this line of insight. In the past 10 years, the trends include the

  • Average Winning Weight: 10st 11lb
  • Winner’s Average Official Rating: 150
  • Average Age of Winning Horse: 8/9 years old

If we extend these factors out to this year’s renewal we can see that Vanilier and Mr
Incredible fit the criteria for likely winning horses. Vanilier actually finished runner-up in last
year’s Grand National from a 4lb lower mark whilst Mr Incredible ran a huge race in last
month’s Midlands Grand National at Uttoxeter over a similar distance to the big race at
Aintree. Both horses come here with the right profile and they also figure prominently in
the betting.
Another interesting angle into the race revolves around jockey Mark Walsh and his choice of
mount from the all-powerful team of JP McManus which contains five horses in this year’s
race. The jockey has come down on the side of the mare Limerick Lace who comes into the
race in fine form having won three out of her four races this season. Her only defeat came
in the hugely competitive Troytown Handicap Chase at Navan in November and if anything
that race suggested that she may have the necessary attributes to be competitive here. She
has shown the necessary pace to win at 2m2f and 2m4f this season however there is plenty
of stamina in her pedigree and she also relishes soft ground. Given all of this plus the fact
that she is the choice of the owner’s retained jockey, then she goes onto the short list of
possible winners’ for this year’s renewal.

The first winner of the great race was a horse named Lottery and to some extent the race
can still be considered to be somewhat of a lottery. However the race has been much
modified in recent times and there are a number of trends, traits, form and course factors
that can be teased out and put forward in the search of the winner for this year’s race.
Based on these factors, the following short-list is suggested:

  • Vanilier
  • Mr Incredible
  • Limerick Lace

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