The Coral Welsh National 2018 takes place today, December 27th. The list of runners has officially been declared and 20 will take their chances at Chepstow at 2.50pm. You can watch it live on ITV4!

Top weight, and wearing No.1, is Ballyoptic. Trained by Nigel Twiston-Davies, he’s a popular chaser who finished second in the Scottish Grand National in April. He returned this season for the Becher Chase but fell under jockey Tom Bellamy. He is currently 16/1 with Bet365.

Yala Enki is up next at No.2. At 20/1 with Bet365, this Venetia Williams trained 8-year-old won last time out at Bangor. Those on the lower weights tend to do better in the Coral Welsh National so carrying 11-11 may hinder today.

For those who fancy placing a bet today, the top three favourites for the race are Elegant Escape on 5/1, Folsom Blue on 15/2 and Vintage Clouds on 8/1. Interestingly enough all will carry over 11 stone. Historically only four runners have won off a similar weight since 1997. There’s no doubting their ability but on soft ground and over more than 3m5f the less you have to carry the greater your chances.

That said Elegant Escape from trainer Colin Tizzard is a superb horse. With nine chase starts, he has won or placed in the top three in all of them. In addition, six of them were on Soft ground. Seven of them were at least 3m but the majority of them were with less weight. Will the burden of 11-08 hold him back?

Looksnowtlikebrian is an interesting contender. At odds of 14/1 he is worth consideration for an each-way bet. Trained by Tim Vaughan, he is the right age, weight and on very good form. From six chase starts he has won four of them and placed in a fifth. He goes into today’s race with two back-to-back wins at Carlisle and has previous good form at Chepstow.

Those who like to pick a horse based on their name may be interested in Jenny’s Surprise. Trained by Fergal O’Brien this mare is a decent chaser who likes the going on the softer side. At 33/1 with Bet365, she is a long shot but sometimes the underdog has its day!

Here is the full list of runners for the 2018 Coral Welsh National.

1. Ballyoptic – 11-12 – Nigel Twiston-Davies – 20/1
2. Yala Enki – 11-11 – Venetia Williams – 20/1
3. Elegant Escape – 11-8 – Colin Tizzard – 5/1
4. Vyta Du Roc – 11-4 – Nicky Henderson – 20/1
5. Vintage Clouds – 11-3 – Sue Smith – 9/1
6. Vieux Lion Rouge – 11-3 – David Pipe – 12/1
7. Folsom Blue – 11-2 – Gordon Elliott – 8/1
8. Baie Des Iles – 11-1 – Ross O’Sullivan – 16/1
9. Ramses De Teillee – 11-1 – David Pipe – 12/1
10. Raz De Maree – 10-13 – Gavin Cromwell – 25/1
11. Regal Flow – 10-11 – Bob Buckler – 28/1
12. Rons Dream – 10-10 – Peter Bowen – 20/1
13. Looksnowtlikebrian – 10-9 – Tim Vaughan – 14/1
14. Final Nudge – 10-9 – David Dennis – 12/1
15. Lieutenant Colonel – 10-8 – Sophie Leech – 150/1
16. Kansas City Chief – 10-6 – Neil Mulholland – 22/1
17. Jennys Surprise – 10-5 – Fergal O’Brien – 33/1
18. Dawson City – 10-4 – Polly Gundry – 18/1
19. Mysteree – 10-4 – Michael Scudamore – 66/1
20. Holly Bush Henry – 10-4 – Phil Middleton – 40/1

The odds displayed above are from Bet365. They are based on returns for FOUR places. Odds are available for FIVE places but are shorter. For example, Ballyoptic at four places is 20/1. Ballyoptic at five places is 16/1.