If you’re short on time and want to know all about this year’s Grand National Runners, then this quick guide will be perfect for you.
Compiled by our resident contributor, Steve Mullington, this is a one-line summary for each of the 40 runners that will line up on Saturday 14th at 5.15pm, all in search of that historical win!
1. Minella Rocco
Was runner-up in the 2017 Cheltenham Gold Cup, but hasn’t really built on that since. Ground has probably gone against him.
Fourth in the last year’s renewal. Rated 9lbs higher this year, but enjoys these fences and has been a popular choice since winning the Becher Chase here in December.
3. Anibale Fly
Never raced at Aintree and has done most of his racing in Ireland. Recently came third in the Cheltenham Gold Cup.
4. The Last Samuri
Came second in the 2016 Grand National, but finished well back in 16th place 12 months ago. Loves the track and the fences.
5. Valseur Lido
Will appreciate the step back into handicap company but has stamina to prove. Easily passed over.
6. Total Recall
An easy winner over hurdles at Leopardstown, plus the Ladbrokes Gold Trophy Handicap back in December. He fell three from home in the Gold Cup. The yard won the race in 2005.
7. Alpha Des Obeaux
This Irish runner is often seen in Graded races and his yard took this race in 2016 for the same connections. Not one to dismiss lightly.
8. Perfect Candidate
The eleven-year-old was pulled up last year but does have 6lbs less to carry this time and was a good winner at Cheltenham in Nov over 3m3f.
9. Shantou Flyer
Notched up four second place finishes on the bounce this season, the last of which was at the Cheltenham Festival and all were on heavy ground. He was pulled-up in last year’s race.
10. Tenor Nivernais
Came 17th in the race 12 months ago and gets in off the same mark this year. Stable won the race in 2009 with Mon Mome but does not appear to be in the same league as him.
11. Carlingford Lough
Former winner of the Grade One Punchestown Gold Cup and has run well in some top company during his career, notching up more than £500k in the process.
Dual winner of the Scottish National and owned by three times winner Trevor Hemmings. Connections have said they will pull him out if the going is soft.
13. Tiger Roll
Recorded his second Cheltenham Festival win when romping home in the Glenfarclas Cross Country Chase. Will stay the trip and has finished in the top three in 10 of his 15 chase starts.
14. Regal Encore
Ran into 8th place in the Grand National in 2017. Gets in off the same mark so every chance he could be in the mix again, however significant improvement will be required to go seven places better this year.
15. Vieux Lion Rouge
Was well-fancied for the race in 2017 and finished a fair 6th that day, beaten 27 lengths. Only rated a pound higher and has won over these fences before. Campaigned quietly this season and could easily spring an upset.
16. Chase The Spud
Won the Midlands Grand National at Uttoxeter last season and started this season off with another win at Haydock but has subsequently been pulled up twice since.
17. Warriors Tale
Second in the Sky Bet Chase at Doncaster in January but this distance is somewhat of an unknown for him. Recently bought by leading Grand National owner, Trevor Hemmings.
Has won or placed six times from eight chase starts but has only had one run since March last year due to a ligament problem. Was third in the 2016 Scottish National and has beaten some notable scalps.
19. Gas Line Boy
Won the Grand Sefton over the Grand National fences in December and stays all day. Came 5th in last year’s race and his trainer Ian Williams has just hit a purple patch.
20. The Dutchman
Winner of the Peter Marsh Chase at Haydock in January, but pulled-up in the Grand National Trial there last time in desperate going. Acts on most going and is an interesting outsider.
21. Pleasant Company
Winner of the Bobbyjo Chase at Fairyhouse back in February 2017 and a decent ninth in this race last year. Not the most obvious one of the Mullins raiders.
22. Ucello Conti
Went off the favourite the race 12 months ago, but unseated at the 22nd fence when in mid division. Rated 2lbs lower this season.
23. Saint Are
Saint Are is an Aintree stalwart and has run there 12 times including the last two Grand Nationals where he fell the first year but was a very respectable third place finisher last year. Has to be respected.
Has the experience over the national fences having competed in the Becher Chase in 2016 when finishing in eighth after a clear round. This one is worth a precautionary look on the day.
25. Raz De Maree
Finished 8th in the 2014 running and unseated last year with this being his last realistic chance to take the spoils. Clearly in great heart this season at the age of thirteen – a point proven with his superb win in the Welsh Grand National. The ground has come just right for him too.
26. I Just Know
Sue Smith’s runner has an excellent record with eight wins or places from ten chase starts. Winner over 3m6f at Catterick and ran a solid race at Uttoxeter last time. Stable won the race in 2013 with Aurora’s Encore.
Virgilio has run at Aintree six times, winning three times and finishing third on a fourth occasion. Has undergone a wind operation which may revive his fortunes.
28. Baie Des Iles
Katie Walsh’s third on Seabass remains the closest any female jockey has come to winning the National and she will be hoping to go two better here on the seven-year-old mare trained by her husband.
Maggie sprang a 50/1 shock victory in 2016 in the race just before the Grand National after he failed to make the cut for the main event itself. Ground conditions are a positive for him again.
Pendra has only been seen three times since December 2015. He ran in the 2016 Grand National and finished 13th, came second in the 2017 Kim Muir, then ran 15th in the Kim Muir this season. One to swerve.
Well handicapped on old form and was 12th in the 2016 running. Don’t expect to see anything of this racing enigma until very late in the race.
32. Childrens List
Career wins have tended to come in small fields and and he was pulled up, looking tired, when last seen in the National Trial at Punchestown. Easily passed over.
33. Lord Windermere
Winner of the 2014 Cheltenham Gold Cup and was 7th in this race 12 months ago. This will be his third attempt at winning the race. Dangerous to ignore purely on what he has achieved at the highest level in the past.
34. Captain Redbeard
Won the Tommy Whittle Chase this season at Haydock Park. He is 9lbs higher for that win but ran a creditable second in the Peter Marsh off this rating next time. He came 6th in the Grand Sefton so has handled these fences this fences before. Lively outsider.
35. Houblon Des Obeaux
The Venetia Williams stable has sparked right into life this week which is music to the ears for fans of this wonderful stable servant. Finished in 10th place in last year’s Grand National and will be carrying 6lb less this year.
36. Bless The Wings
Winner of the Cheltenham Cross country race last December but worryingly far too many letters in his form figures this season. Usually a very solid jumper and he did actually complete her in 2015.
Won the Classic Chase at Warwick in January, but failed to follow-up next time in the Eider Chase. Finished second over 4m1f in the Midlands National last time out so clearly has no stamina issues. Gets on well with jockey Bryony Frost who will be hoping to emulate her father.
38. Final Nudge
Third in the Welsh National and gets in off a low weight here. Acts on most ground and finished in the top three in 7 of this 10 chase starts. Likely to get overlooked in the betting because he isn’t from a fashionable stable.
39. Double Ross
Finished fourth in the Kim Muir Handicap Chase at Cheltenham last time out showing some signs of his old ability. His trainer is no stranger to sending out Grand National winners having done so twice before.
40. Road To Riches
At one point was rated as high as 167 but those days are well behind him and it’s been more than two years since a win and he hasn’t placed since 2016.