Grand National Today – Corach Rambler Aims To Keep The Title

Randox Grand National @ Aintree on Saturday

The National Hunt showpiece, the Randox Grand National takes place at Aintree this afternoon (17h00).

A maximum field of thirty-four runners compete over four miles, and two and a half furlongs for the massive £500,000 first prize.

Ground conditions at the Liverpool track are likely to remain soft.

Corach Rambler heads the market (Pic – Racing TV)

Defending champion Corach Rambler, trained in Scotland by Lucinda Russell, heads the market at around 6/1.

Two ‘preps’ at Kelso and Haydock late last year preceded his fine third behind Galopin Des Champs and Gerri Colombe in the Cheltenham Gold Cup last month.

Two-time Grand National winning jockey Derek Fox is confident Corach Rambler can make it two in a row, thereby matching the great Tiger Roll. With his course experience, slick jumping, and a fair rating by the handicapper, he holds a favourite’s chance.

Willie Mullins saddles an incredible eight runners in his bid to win a second National and possibly the UK trainers’ championship. His leading hopes according to the market, are the JP McManus owned I Am Maximus and Meetingofthewaters.

Meetingofthewaters reunites with Danny Mullins after their joint success in a listed event at Leopardstown over Christmas. The owners retained rider Mark Walsh rode him last time out at Cheltenham when travelling strongly entering the home straight but having to settle for third after a poor jump at the last. He comes here fit with a light weight, and Danny is sure to be prominent on him throughout.

Paul Townend rides I Am Maximus after Mark Walsh sided with the Gavin Cromwell trained mare Limerick Lace. It must have been a tough decision for Walsh as all three have realistic chances.

I Am Maximus carries 12lbs more than both Meetingofthewaters and Limerick Lace but has earned it with victory in the Gr1 Drinmore at Fairyhouse in early December. The eight-year-old subsequently ran third to star stable-mate Galopin Des Champs in the Irish Gold Cup, and then trounced last year’s runner-up Vanillier in a Group 3, conceding 12lbs!

The seven-year-old mare Limerick Lass has been in fine form this season winning three of her four starts including her last start at Cheltenham when victorious in the Mares’ Chase. With her light weight, this classy mare should be involved if still in contention heading to the last.

Others to consider are former Gold Cup winner Minella Indo with Rachael Blackmore riding for Henry de Bromhead and fellow Irish trained Delta Work, the mount of Jack Kennedy.

The Goffer, another Irish raider from the Elliott stable, could be one to include in exotics, currently at 80/1. Leading jockey Sean Bowen rides the light weight.

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