In 2001 Martin Pipe sent 10 runners to the Grand National. On Saturday, April 6th, that record looks set to be broken. Because trainer Gordon Elliott plans to saddle 12 horses for the 2019 Grand National.
The Irish handler currently has 19 entries still in contention. However, he has since ruled out Shattered Love, The Storyteller and Alpha Des Obeaux, who has a muscle injury. That leaves him with 16 potential runners. Borice, Out Sam and Measureofmydreams all appear unlikely to make the cut which will leave him with 13 in contention. Though he has also advised that without rain this week, Mala Beach will also not run.
Should they get in, Gordon Elliott does plan to run the remaining 12. Speaking to the Racing Post Elliott said, “Everything else is being aimed at the race and we’ll run whatever gets in.”
That means Elliott could run the following horses:
- A Toi Phil
- Bless The Wings
- Blow By Blow
- Don Poli
- Folsom Blue
- General Principle
- Jury Duty
- Monbeg Notorious
- Noble Endeavor
- Tiger Roll
The only jockey that he has confirmed to date is Robbie Power who will be on board Jury Duty. Based on last year’s performance, it would seem likely that Davy Russell will be paired with Tiger Roll again.
On the other end of the scale, Paul Nicholls may not even have one Grand National runner. His only contender, Warriors Tale, could be aimed at the Topham Chase on Friday. With entries in both races, Nicholls is holding off until he has spoken to Trevor Hemmings racing team.
With the five-day declaration stage scheduled today, and coupled with the runners who were withdrawn last week, Vintage Clouds, General Principle and Walk In The Mill have all now definitely made the cut.
The problem that punters have now is who to back! With so many solid chasers looking set to line up on Saturday, it’s a difficult choice to make. Never have so many runners been ahead of the handicapper in terms of how they have performed since the weights were released. Despite the 4lbs weight increase since Bristol De Mai was withdrawn, Tiger Roll, Ms Parfois, Jury Duty, Rathvinden and plenty more are still ahead of the game.
But ultimately, many Grand National fans will opt for a horse they like. We all know that the race involves a slice of luck and even the best can falter on the day. With rain and thundershowers forecasted for Liverpool this week, the ground will play a significant part in the success of the runners. So who will triumph? We will just have to wait and see!