2018 Grand National runners and riders, betting tips, racecard, TV start time and statistics ahead of the Aintree showpiece

Racing
Everything you need to know before placing a bet on the Grand National
Everything you need to know before placing a bet on the Grand National

The 2018 Randox Health Grand National is on April 14 at Aintree and we've got all the information you need including tips and features, race times and schedule plus the latest Sky Bet odds and offers.

Grand National Guide contents

  1. Grand National racecard
  2. Betting tips & features
  3. Grand National preview Podcast
  4. Key trials & replaysTi
  5. Grand National odds
  6. Details, history, statistics, facts & figures
  7. Course & fence guide
  8. Grand National quiz

1. Randox Health Grand National Racecard, runners & riders

(MAXIMUM FIELD OF 40, four reserves have until 1pm Friday to get a run)

Horse, Age, weight, trainer

  1. THUNDER AND ROSES (IRE), 10, 10-05, Mouse Morris (RESERVE 1)
  2. BLAKLION, 9, 11-10, Nigel Twiston-Davies
  3. ANIBALE FLY (FR), 8, 11-08, Tony Martin IRE
  4. THE LAST SAMURI (IRE), 10, 11-08, Kim Bailey
  5. VALSEUR LIDO (FR), 9, 11-07, Henry de Bromhead IRE
  6. TOTAL RECALL (IRE), 9, 11-05, Willie Mullins IRE
  7. ALPHA DES OBEAUX (FR), 8, 11-04, Mouse Morris IRE
  8. PERFECT CANDIDATE (IRE), 11, 11-03, Fergal O'Brien
  9. SHANTOU FLYER (IRE), 8, 11-02, Richard Hobson
  10. TENOR NIVERNAIS (FR), 11, 11-01, Venetia Williams
  11. CARLINGFORD LOUGH (IRE), 12, 11-01, John Kiely IRE
  12. DELUSIONOFGRANDEUR (IRE), 8, 10-05, Sue Smith (RESERVE 2)
  13. TIGER ROLL (IRE), 8, 10-13, Gordon Elliott IRE
  14. REGAL ENCORE (IRE), 10, 10-13, Anthony Honeyball
  15. VIEUX LION ROUGE (FR), 9, 10-13, David Pipe
  16. CHASE THE SPUD, 10, 10-12, Fergal O'Brien
  17. WARRIORS TALE, 9, 10-12, Paul Nicholls
  18. SEEYOUATMIDNIGHT, 10, 10-12, Sandy Thomson
  19. GAS LINE BOY (IRE), 12 10-11, Ian Williams
  20. THE DUTCHMAN (IRE), 8, 10-11, Colin Tizzard
  21. PLEASANT COMPANY (IRE), 10, 10-11, Willie Mullins IRE
  22. UCELLO CONTI (FR), 10, 10-10, Gordon Elliott IRE
  23. SAINT ARE (FR), 12, 10-10, Tom George
  24. WALK IN THE MILL (FR), 8, 10-04, Robert Walford (RESERVE 3)
  25. RAZ DE MAREE (FR), 13, 10-09, Gavin Cromwell IRE
  26. I JUST KNOW (IRE), 8, 10-08, Sue Smith
  27. VIRGILIO (FR), 9, 10-08, Dan Skelton
  28. BAIE DES ILES (FR), 7, 10-08, Ross O'Sullivan IRE
  29. MAGGIO (FR), 13, 10-08, Patrick Griffin IRE
  30. PENDRA (IRE), 10, 10-08, Charlie Longsdon
  31. BUYWISE (IRE), 11, 10-08, Evan Williams
  32. CHILDRENS LIST (IRE), 8, 10-08, Willie Mullins IRE
  33. LORD WINDERMERE (IRE), 12, 10-07, Jim Culloty IRE
  34. CAPTAIN REDBEARD (IRE), 9, 10-07, Stuart Coltherd
  35. HOUBLON DES OBEAUX (FR), 11, 10-07, Venetia Williams
  36. BLESS THE WINGS (IRE), 13, 10-06, Gordon Elliott IRE
  37. MILANSBAR (IRE), 11, 10-06, Neil King
  38. FINAL NUDGE (IRE), 9, 10-06, David Dennis
  39. DOUBLE ROSS (IRE), 12, 10-06, Nigel Twiston-Davies
  40. ROAD TO RICHES (IRE), 11, 10-05, Noel Meade IRE

Reserve 4 VINTAGE CLOUDS (IRE), 8, 10-04, Sue Smith

2. Betting tips and features

Our leading racing tipsters will continue to bring you more Grand National features and betting previews as the Festival draws closer...

Lydia Hislop's Pinstickers' Guide - Lydia Hislop rates each horse's chance in the Grand National, from takeaway merchants to road runners, and comes up with a 1-2-3-4-5-6 for the Aintree spectacular.

Simon Holt: Get on the Raz - Racing commentator Simon Holt is backing a 33/1 chance in Saturday's Randox Health Grand National.

How to pick a Grand National winner - Matt Brocklebank ponders 10 of the most popular ways to make a Grand National selection – and what each approach says about you as a punter...

Grand National Book Review - Sky Bet head racing compiler Richard Horner with his horse-by-horse guide to the 2018 renewal.

Donn McClean: High expectations - The respected scribe looks at the Irish team for the Randox Health Grand National and expectations are high over the raiding party.

Ed Chamberlin's Super Six - The ITV Racing anchor highlights his idea of the Grand National 1-2-3-4-5-6 ahead of the big race.

Alex Hammond: Total domination - Alex Hammond is backing Total Recall to win for Ireland. Don't miss her Grand National tips.

Grand National Stats guide - Matt Brocklebank highlights the key trends, unveiling the importance of age, odds, proven stamina and more.

Grand National horse-by-horse - David Ord's guide to the Randox Health Grand National with an Irish horse fancied to scoop the huge prize.

Essential Grand National pointers - Ben Linfoot looks through the horses that are 'well-in' at the weights, have form over the Aintree fences, have proven stamina and more ahead of the Grand National.

Randox Health Grand National: Long-range fancies - Our racing team of Ben Linfoot, David Ord and Matt Brocklebank offer three long-range fancies.

Stuart Williams Tips - The popular racing blogger with his take on the big race at Aintree.

3. Grand National preview Podcast

Ed Chamberlin and Oli Bell join our racing team to preview the three days of the Randox Health Grand National Festival and Daryl Jacob takes us through a mouthwatering book of rides.

There are best bets for Thursday, Friday and Saturday and the startling revelation that one of the guests is about to appear in front of camera with a broken nose (spoiler alert – it isn't Ed).

You can now listen to this week's offering free of charge via iTunes and don't fret, the podcast is also still available in the usual place on soundcloud.

Download and subscribe to the podcast on iTunes right NOW!

Listen to the Aintree Preview Podcast
Listen to the Aintree Preview Podcast

4. Key Grand National Trials & Video Replays

We'll help you to follow the form guide for the Randox Health Grand National with all the results and FREE video replays from the key trials.

Click on the horses' names for the full result and replays.

Grand National - Gordon Elliot on Ucello Conti

5. Sky Bet's Grand National 2018 Odds & Offers

Click here for Sky Bet's latest non-runner, no-bet odds on the Grand National.

Sky Bet are paying six places on the National
Sky Bet are paying six places on the National

Blaklion features among Sky Bet's market leaders for the National after his hugely impressive Becher Chase victory earlier in the season. His trainer Nigel Twiston-Davies saddled the winner in 1998 and 2002 via Earth Summit and Bindaree respectively and although Blaklion was beaten in the trial at Haydock last time, he's since undergone a breathing operation.

Ireland's champion trainer Willie Mullins has just the one Grand National victory to his name having saddled Hedgehunter to victory 13 years ago and he's responsible for the well-fancied Total Recall, who won the Ladbrokes Trophy at Newbury earlier this season.

Gordon Elliott is another leading Irish handler and made his name when Silver Birch claimed Aintree glory in 2007. Elliott is responsible for Tiger Roll, Ucello Conti and Bless The Wings.

Another towards the top of the market is Cheltenham Gold Cup third Anibale Fly.

Sky Bet are currently Non-Runner, No-Bet and Best Odds Guaranteed on the great race and are paying SIX places on all each-way bets.

6. Grand National Details, History, Facts, Figures & Statistics

When is the 2018 Grand National?

The Randox Health Grand National Festival consists of three days of top sporting action at Aintree Racecourse with the eyes of the world fixed firmly on the world’s most famous chase - the Randox Health Grand National.

The Grand National is worth £1 million for the fifth year running and the runners for the 171st renewal are set to start at 1715 BST on Saturday April 14, live on ITV 1.

How many fences are jumped in the Grand National?

There are 30 fences of the Grand National Course to be jumped and four miles, two furlongs and 74 yards to be run and the course takes roughly nine minutes to complete. 

Each day of the festival has one race over the Grand National Course, with the six other contests taking place on the separate Mildmay Course, which consists of ordinary fences, and the Hurdle & Flat Courses. 

What are the most famous Grand National stories?

Since the inaugural running in 1839, when Lottery had his name etched on the roll of honour, there have been many memorable renewals of the Grand National.

The name of Red Rum is synonymous with the great race with Ginger McCain's legendary chaser winning in 1973, '74 and '77 and he was buried at the winning post following his death at the age of 30 in 1995.

This year marks the 41st anniversary of his record third Grand National victory and it is 51 years since 100/1 outsider Foinavon negotiated the pile-up at the 23rd fence to storm into the record books. 

Prior to the 1967 National Foinavon was quoted at 500/1 on the back of a 26 race losing run that stretched back to February, 1965 in Ireland.

What followed is one of the most famous moments in Aintree history as a loose horse – Popham Down - ran across the smallest fence bringing the field to a standstill, while Foinavon, so far behind, was the only one to successfully negotiate the melee and became a winner whose story perfectly epitomises the spirit of the Grand National.

Running Foinavon close is Devon Loch’s inexplicable collapse in the 1956 Grand National, a mere 50 yards from a famous victory for his owner, The Queen Mother, which serves as a reminder that the race is often won and lost in the final run from the ‘Elbow’.

Famous landmarks around the course are an integral part of the Grand National experience; with the fences such as Becher’s Brook, the Canal Turn, Valentine’s and the Chair so well known to the millions who watch the race and phrases of commentators such as "crossing the Melling Road" are built into people’s subconscious, while the 'elbow' appears with the winning post in sight.

Who are the leading Grand National horses, trainers, jockeys and owners?

Leading horse

Three wins - Red Rum (1973, 1974 & 1977)

Leading jockey

Five wins - George Stevens (Freetrader 1856, Emblem1863, Emblematic 1864, The Colonel 1869 & 1870)

Leading trainers

Four wins - George Dockeray (Lottery 1839, Jerry 1840, Gaylad 1842, Miss Mowbray 1852), Fred Rimell (E.S.B 1956, Nicolaus Silver 1961, Gay Trip 1970, Rag Trade 1976), Ginger McCain (Red Rum 1973, 1974, 1977, Amberleigh House 2004)

Leading owners

Three wins - James Octavious Machell (Disturbance 1873, Reugny 1874, Regal 1876), Noel Le Mare (Red Rum 1973, 1974 & 1977), Trevor Hemmings (Hedgehunter 2005, Ballabriggs 2011, Many Clouds 2015)

Most Rides

20 - AP McCoy from 1995-2015

Most Rides without winning

20 - Richard Johnson from 1997-2016

What are the biggest and shortest price winners?

Biggest priced winners

100/1 - Mon Mome (2009), Foinavon (1967), Caughoo (1947), Gregalach (1929) and Tipperary Tim (1928)
66/1 - Auroras Encore (2013), Ayala (1963), Russian Hero (1949), and Rubio (1908)
50/1 - Last Suspect (1985), Anglo (1966), Sheila's Cottage (1948) and Forbra (1932)

Shortest priced winners

11/4 - Poethlyn (1919)
3/1 - Huntsman (1862)
100/30 - Roquefort (1885)

What are the highest and lowest winning weights?

Highest winning weight

12st 7lb - Poethlyn (1919), Jerry M (1912), Manifesto (1899), Cloister (1893).
The top weight, which had already been lowered to 12st, went down to 11st 12lb in 2002 and then to 11st 10lb in 2009

Lowest winning weight

9st 6lb - Freetrader (1856)
The minimum weight now is 10st 

What are the odds of the most recent Grand National winners?

Weight and odds of last 20 winners:

  • 2017 One For Arthur, 10st 13lb, 14/1
  • 2016 Rule The World, 10st 7lb, 33/1
  • 2015 Many Clouds, 11st 9lb, 25/1
  • 2014 Pineau De Re, 10st 6lb, 25/1
  • 2013 Auroras Encore, 10st 3lb, 66/1
  • 2012 Neptune Collonges, 11st 6lb, 33/1
  • 2011 Ballabriggs, 11st, 14/1
  • 2010 Don't Push It, 11st 5lb, 10/1 JF
  • 2009 Mon Mome, 11st, 100/1
  • 2008 Comply Or Die, 10st 9lb, 7/1 JF
  • 2007 Silver Birch, 10st 6lb, 33/1
  • 2006 Numbersixvalverde, 10st 8lb, 11/1
  • 2005 Hedgehunter, 11st 1lb, 7/1 F
  • 2004 Amberleigh House, 10st 10lb, 16/1
  • 2003 Monty's Pass, 10st 7lb, 16/1
  • 2002 Bindaree, 10st 4lb, 20/1
  • 2001 Red Marauder, 10st 11lb, 33/1
  • 2000 Papillon, 10st 12lb, 10/1
  • 1999 Bobbyjo, 10st, 10/1
  • 1998 Earth Summit, 10st 5lb, 7/1 F
  • 1997 Lord Gyllene, 10st, 14/1

How do the Grand National favourites gets on?

Fate of the favourite since 1996:

  • 2017 Blaklion 8/1 Fourth
  • 2016 The Last Samuri 8/1 Second. Many Clouds 8/1 16th
  • 2015 Shutthefrontdoor 6/1 Fifth
  • 2014 Double Seven 10/1 Third. Teaforthree 10/1 unseated rider 15th
  • 2013 Seabass 11/2 13th
  • 2012 Seabass 8/1 Third, Shakalakaboomboom 8/1 Ninth
  • 2011 The Midnight Club 15/2 Sixth
  • 2010 DON'T PUSH IT 10/1 WON. Big Fella Thanks 10/1 Fourth
  • 2009 Butler's Cabin 7/1 Seventh
  • 2008 COMPLY OR DIE 7/1 WON. Cloudy Lane 7/1 Sixth
  • 2007 Point Barrow 8/1 Fell 1st. Joes Edge 8/1 Pulled up before 20th, Monkerhostin 8/1 Refused 7th
  • 2006 Hedgehunter 5/1 Second. Clan Royal 5/1 Third
  • 2005 HEDGEHUNTER 7-1 WON
  • 2004 Clan Royal 10/1 Second. Bindaree 10-1 Unseated rider 6th. Joss Naylor 10/1 Pulled up before 19th. Jurancon II 10/1 Fell 4th
  • 2003 Shotgun Willy 7/1 Pulled up after 21st
  • 2002 Blowing Wind 8/1 Third
  • 2001 Edmond 10/1 Fell at the Chair (15th). Inis Cara 10/1 Fell 4th. Moral Support 10/1 Hampered and refused first Canal Turn (8th)
  • 2000 Dark Stranger 9/1 Unseated rider 3rd
  • 1999 Fiddling The Facts 6/1 Fell second Becher's (22nd)
  • 1998 EARTH SUMMIT 7/1 WON
  • 1997 Go Ballistic 7/1 Pulled up 29th
  • 1996 ROUGH QUEST 7/1 WON
Blaklion
Becher Chase winner Blaklion was fourth in last year's National

More Grand National statistics...

Starters and finishers

Smallest number of finishers: Two, in 1928 when 42 started, with Tipperary Tim beating the remounted Billy Barton by a distance. Three finished in both 1913 and 1951. The remounting of horses was banned in all races by the British Horseracing Authority in November, 2009.

Most number of finishers: 23 in 1984, from 40 starters. There were 22 finishers in 1963, 1987 and 1992.

Most number of starters: 66 in 1929
The maximum is now 40

Least number of starters: 10 in 1883

Grey Grand National winners

Three different grey horses have won the Grand National four times:

The Lamb (1868 and 1871), Nicolaus Silver (1961) and Neptune Collonges (2012).

Four more have been placed in recent renewals: 

1997 Suny Bay (2nd), 1998 Suny Bay (2nd), 2002 What’s Up Boys (2nd), 2002 Kingsmark (4th), 2008 King Johns Castle (2nd)

Winning mares

There have been 13 winning mares: 

Charity (1841), Miss Mowbray (1852), Anatis (1860), Jealousy (1861), Emblem (1863), Emblematic (1864), Casse Tete (1872), Empress (1880), Zoedone (1883), Frigate (1889), Shannon Lass (1902), Sheila’s Cottage (1948) and Nickel Coin (1951).

Placed since 1951:

Gentle Moya (2nd 1956), Tiberetta (3rd 1957, 2nd 1958 & 4th 1959), Miss Hunter (3rd 1970), Eyecatcher (3rd 1976 and 1977), Auntie Dot (3rd 1991), Ebony Jane (4th 1994) and Dubacilla (4th 1995).

Winning distances

Shortest winning distance: Neptune Collonges by a nose from Sunnyhillboy in 2012.

Longest winning distance: A 'distance' by the following: Cloister (1893), Covertcoat (1913), Shaun Splash (1921), Tipperary Tim (1928), Mr What (1958) and Red Marauder (2001).

Winning times

Fastest: Mr Frisk (1990) 8m 47.8s
Slowest: Lottery (1839) 14m 53s

Winning ages

Nine-year-olds have won 45 of the 169 runnings of the Grand National where the winner’s age was recorded. The best recent record is by 11-year-olds, accounting for three of the last six winners – Neptune Collonges (2012), Auroras Encore (2013) and Pineau De Re (2014).

Oldest winner: Peter Simple (1853), aged 15.

Youngest winner: Alcibiade (1865), Regal (1876), Austerlitz (1877), Empress (1880) and Lutteur III (1909) were all aged five. Since 2012, only seven-yearolds and upwards can take part.

Grand National winning ages since 1984

8-y-o (4 winners) Party Politics (1992), Bindaree (2002), Many Clouds (2015), One For Arthur (2017)

9-y-o (9 winners) West Tip (1986), Rhyme 'N' Reason (1988), Lord Gyllene (1997), Bobbyjo (1999), Papillon (2000), Hedgehunter (2005), Comply Or Die (2008), Mon Mome (2009), Rule The World (2016)

10-y-o (8 winners) Hallo Dandy (1984), Rough Quest (1996), Earth Summit (1998), Monty's Pass (2003), Numbersixvalverde (2006), Silver Birch (2007), Don't Push It (2010), Ballabriggs (2011)

11-y-o (9 winners) Last Suspect (1985), Maori Venture (1987), Mr Frisk (1990), Seagram (1991), Miinnehoma (1994), Red Marauder (2001), Neptune Collonges (2012), Auroras Encore (2013), Pineau De Re (2014). 

12-y-o (3 winners) Little Polveir (1989), Royal Athlete (1995), Amberleigh House (2004) 

7. Aintree Course & Fence Guide

The Grand National at Aintree is the longest National Hunt race in Britain, covering a distance of four miles, two furlongs and about 74 yards and consisting of two laps of 16 fences, with the first 14 of those jumped twice.

Below are the heights and key details of each fence around the National Course...

Fence 1 & 17
Height: 4 feet 6 inches (1.37 m)
Hopefully your horse avoids the ignominy of falling at the first - a fate shared by a record 12 runners in the 1951 National.

Fence 2 & 18
Height: 4 feet 7 inches (1.40 m)

Fence 3 & 19 (open ditch)
Height: 4 feet 10 inches (1.47 m); fronted by a 6 feet 0 inches (1.83 m) ditch
If the horse(s) you backed safely negotiated the opening two jumps, this will be their first major test of the race.

Fence 4 & 20
Height: 4 feet 10 inches (1.47 m)
A tough obstacle to clear. During the second lap in 2011, it became the first fence in history to be bypassed following an equine fatality.

Fence 5 & 21
Height: 5 feet 0 inches (1.52 m)
This obstacle was bypassed on the final lap in 2012 so medics could treat a jockey.

Fence 6 & 22 - Becher's Brook
Height: 5 feet 0 inches (1.52 m), with the landing side 6 inches (15 cm) to 10 inches (25 cm) lower than the takeoff side
One of the most popular points of the course, Becher's Brook provides one of the most eye-catching displays of jumping but it's tough for the jockey and horse to get right. As recently as 2004 it caused nine to fall although in 2013 all horses cleared it safely. The fence was named after Captain Martin Becher, who fell there in the first Grand National and took shelter in the small brook running along the landing side.

Fence 7 & 23 - Foinavon
Height: 4 feet 6 inches (1.37 m)
One of the smallest fences on the course, it was named after the 100/1 winner of the 1967 race who avoided a huge pile-up here to come from a long way back to claim a famous triumph.

Fence 8 & 24 - Canal Turn
Height: 5 feet 0 inches (1.52 m)
The Canal Turn is notable for the sharp left turn - almost 90 degrees - runners to have to make as soon as they land. There's usually at least one faller but in 2001 there was as many as six when Paddy's Return ran in front of the field as they approached the fence and a further three were stopped in their tracks. 

Fence 9 & 25 - Valentine's
Height: 5 feet 0 inches (1.52 m) with a 5 feet 6 inches (1.68 m) brook
Originally know as the Second Brook, it was renamed after a horse named Valentine was reputed to have jumped the fence hind legs first in 1840.

Fence 10 & 26
Height: 5 feet 0 inches (1.52 m)

Fence 11 & 27 - open ditch
Height: 5 feet 0 inches (1.52 m), with a 6 feet 0 inches (1.83 m) ditch on the takeoff side

Fence 12 & 28 - ditch
Height: 5 feet 0 inches (1.52 m), with a 5 feet 6 inches (1.68 m) ditch on the landing side
After clearing this fence, runners then cross the Melling Road near to the Anchor Bridge.

Fence 13 & 29
Height: 4 feet 7 inches (1.40 m)
Rarely causes problems to those still left in the race

Fence 14 & 30
Height: 4 feet 6 inches (1.37 m)
The last fence on the final lap can often claim very tired horses. On the first lap they continue around the course to negotiate the two fences that are only jumped once.

Fence 15 - The Chair
Height: 5 feet 2 inches (1.57 m), preceded by a 6 ft (1.83 m) wide ditch
Despite being the tallest fence in the race, there's been no more than one faller in any of the last nine Grand Nationals but three fell in the 2006 and 2001 renewals. It's named after the chair once sited alongside the fence, at which a distance judge would sit when races used to be run in heats.

Fence 16 - Water Jump
Height: 2 feet 6 inches (0.76 m)
This fence would be a popular spot for Grand National photographers if they didn't predominantly opt for The Chair. One the final lap these last two fences are avoided and runners head onto the "run-in" to the finishing post.

8. Grand National Quiz

Test your Aintree knowledge with our 20 Grand National quiz questions ahead of the 2018 edition on Saturday April 14.

1. In what year did Tony McCoy win his one and only Grand National on Don't Push It?

2. Name the movie that starred John Hurt and told the tale behind the 1981 winner Aldaniti.

3. Ginger McCain won the race four times, three with Red Rum, but can you name his other winner?

4. Gordon Elliott is now a record-breaking trainer in Ireland, but how many winners had he trained at home when Silver Birch won in 2007?

5. Which horse won the race twice in the 1930s and now has a novice chase named after him at Ascot?

6. Foinavon's victory at 100/1 is one of the most famous, but can you remember the year?

7. Who rode Red Rum to his first two victories?

8. What was unusual about the jockey of 1980 winner Ben Nevis?

9. Most people can remember Jenny Pitman was the first lady to train a National winner in 1983 with Corbiere, but she also won in in 1995. With which horse?

10. Last Suspect, a 50/1 winner of the 1985 Grand National, ran in the same colours as the legendary Arkle. Name their owner.

11. What was unique about Lord Gyllene's win in 1997?

12. Which pair were the most recent father-son combination to enjoy success?

13. Who owned 1994 winner Miinnehoma?

14. How many horses finished the race in 2001 when Red Marauder won?

15. Best Mate's jockey Jim Culloty won the race in 2002 on which horse?

16. Bryony Frost has been making her own headlines this season, but on which horse did her father, Jimmy, win the race?

17. Before the race was shortened in distance, which horse held the fastest time?

18. What was the first ever winner of the race in 1839 called?

19. Which lady rider has come closest to winning the race?

20. Which current jockey has ridden in the race the most times without winning?

Click here for the answers

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