The home of the Grand National is back with a bang for 2019, with racing kicking off on Thursday the 4th of April at Aintree near Liverpool. Starting out as a British sporting institution in 1839, with a long history, the event never fails to impress.
Hailed as the best known jumps race in the racing diary, the Grand National race itself takes place on Saturday the 6th of April. Over 150,000 punters are expected to attend over the three-day event, with an estimated 600 million more watching Saturday’s race across the globe.
40 runners will compete in the four-and-a-half-mile course, facing thirty fences. This year Aintree was due to have a celebrity appearance from Ronnie Wood, the Rolling Stones guitarist who bred horse Sandymount Duke. Trainer Jessica Harrington confirmed that Wood would be missing out on having his first runner in the Saturday Grand National.
“Sandymount Duke will miss the Aintree National. It’s nothing serious, but he’s met with a little setback, so he won’t be running”
However, Harrington’s Magic Of Light will be running, her first horse to compete in the Grand National, ridden by Paddy Kennedy.
Grand National Thursday sees the event kick off, celebrating North West sporting champions alongside The Aintree Hurdle and Randox Health Foxhunter’s Steeple Chase.
Much like Cheltenham, The National will be also holding its world-famous Ladies Day on the 5th of April, the second day of the festival and there’ll be prizes for the winner of the Style Award. Four Grade One races will be run including the JLT Melling Steeple Chase and the Randox Health Topham Steeple Chase.
Described by the Jockey Club as ‘the most iconic of all handicapped horseracing events in the world’, the main event on Grand National Day will see just over 8 minutes of racing.
Will this year’s favourite and last year’s winner, Tiger Roll be able to do it all over again? The horse will make history if he does, becoming the first back-to-back winner since Red Rum who won in 1973 and 1974.
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We don’t have long to wait to find out, who are your odds on?