The Aintree Grand National Festival 2021 is well under way and to make sure that you don’t miss out, Karl Hedley has put together a preview of each race on the third and final day.
With a little bit of knowledge and a few choice tips, it’s a great guide to Day Three. Of course, we also know that the Grand National is on day three so for a more in-depth guide to that race, just click here.
Betway Mersey Novices’ Hurdles (Grade 1) (Class 1) 2m4f
Danger: Dreal Deal
Ballyadam found Appreciate It far too good at Cheltenham, but he ought to be able to get back to winning ways now that Henry De Bromhead will have had a few more weeks to work on him.
Having seen the back of Appreciate It more times than he would like, he will be relieved that the Mullins horse doesn’t line up here.
Rachael Blackmore takes over in the saddle for the first time this afternoon and she may well be able to conjure a little extra improvement out of him especially over this longer trip.
My Drogo is unbeaten in three races, but this is the highest level he has ever been tested at and offers no value at current odds.
Dreal Deal and Minella Drama are proven at this trip but have plenty to find on official ratings.
Doom Bar Maghull Novices’ Chase (Grade 1) (Class 1) 2m
Danger: Funambule Sivola
Shishkin is taken to record an eight consecutive victory here as he lines up against much lower-rated opposition.
Given the demolition he handed out to higher-rated rivals at Cheltenham, he has nothing to fear from the likes of Gumball, Elvis Mall or Funambule Sivola.
His biggest danger are the obstacles in front of him and Nico De Boinville just needs to keep their minds on the job.
If there was to be a mighty upset, the Venetia Williams trained Funambule Sivola looks the most likely to cause it.
He knows where the winning post is and should the worst happen, he will be there to pick up the pieces.
Ryanair Stayers’ Hurdle (Grade 1) (Class 1) 3m½f
Tip: Thyme Hill
Danger: Diol Ker
Thyme Hill was forced to miss his intended engagement at Cheltenham and that may have just been a blessing in disguise.
The seven-year-old comes into this as fresh as a daisy whereas many of his opponents endured a particularly gruelling race that was won by Flooring Porter.
He is all square with Paisley Park based on their battles so far this year, which are tied at one apiece.
Having won at tracks including Newbury and Chepstow, this flat track should play to his strengths.
Tom O’Brien comes in for the ride now that Richard Johnson has retired but having won on him before, he will know exactly the type of race to ride.
Paisley Park may find this all happening a bit too quick for him and age is not on his side.
He is vulnerable to his younger rival and this race comes plenty soon enough after Cheltenham.
At a bigger price, Diol Ker will appreciate this return to three miles and could run a big race for Noel Meade.
Mildmay Handicap Chase (Grade 3) (Class 1) 3m1f
Tip: Fagan E/W
Danger: Sam Brown
Fagan has improved with each start this season and put in a power-packed display to win at Newbury by eight lengths when last seen out back in January.
He was giving weight away all around on that occasion so it was an even better performance given the circumstances.
He has form on a sounder surface having won point-to-points on surfaces that were like roads. He skipped the Cheltenham meeting and was targeted specifically at this race.
Most of his rivals including the likes of Cloudy Glen, Happygolucky and Top Notch all ran good races at the Festival, but may have taken too much out of themselves.
A big danger could come in the guise of Sam Brown if he handles the ground as he goes well fresh and has only raced once this campaign.
Randox Grand National Handicap Chase (Grade 3) 4m2½f
This is such a huge race that we’ve dedicated a whole other article to it. Karl Hedley has looked at every single runner in detail and picked out a few that he thinks can run a great race.
For all those details, check out our Top Tippers Guide To The 2021 Grand National – just click the link!