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GI MAC
16 Mar 15 19:58
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Date Joined: 23 Sep 04
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A few weeks way, but having a good look right now I always find is a good way of getting over those festival blues. I enjoyed the Chelt hcp thread so it would be good to hear other peoples thoughts on the big one as we get closer. Here's some of mine:

Top Weight
The only one I know who intends to run from those top of the card is Unioniste, in which case he could be topweight; if he was he'd be the first horse I'd strike from my list. A 7yo carrying 11.10 winning the GN? Would be an immense feat. It would also mean the weights going up 4lbs.

Saying that, there must be a chance Lord Windemere and/or Boston Bob might run, given they won't be winning any graded races in the near future, so Unioniste might have a lesser weight (can see Bowen on him also).

Bottom Weight
After counting the likely runners my hunch is the bottom weight will be somewhere between Renard and Guess Again. It would be good to see a bottom weight carrying the minimum, as it gives a good shape to the handicap. None of this annoying compressed stuff.

Some entries that are catching my eye atm.

First Lieutenant 40/1
Missed chelt for the first time to be aimed at the race, good ground was always necessary for him to be at his best so chance he will get it and he likes it round Aintree. Hcp mark slipping quite significantly over the past year. One of three entries for the owners, and it will be interesting to see who rides with Cooper being banned. I fancy he could take to this.

Rockey Creek 12/1
Runs off a mark of 154, 2lb lower than last year where he finished 5th; and appears to be well in given his new mark after his impressive run lto. He's a big player again and priced accordingly.

Carlito Brigante 66/1
I've seen him run his last two races at Kelso, and back in October he was very impressive winning a hcp over 3m2f carrying top weight, he wasn't stopping either. Never known as a stayer when he was with Elliot, but he seems weirdly progressive again in this new role. Small trainer doing well and has stated GN is the aim. His run lto was a solid prep, incedently in a race where both Ballabriggs and Auroras Encore ran in before their Aintree wins.

Good ground is essential, and he has run well at the course. The negative is no form over the fences, but when he won back in October he led from the front and dictated things, and I can see him getting into a nice rhythm up front if he takes to them. I really like his chances and have had a wee bet, he's been seriously underestimated by the layers.

Al Co 40/1
Last seasons Scottish National winner, this has been his aim all season and runs off only 5lb higher than his Ayr win. Has experience of the track but none over the fences, saying that he has plenty going for him, including the trainer who does well at Aintree and has been a bit unlucky in this over the years. He's another whose price is too big.

Godsmejudge 25/1
Another previous Scottish national winner, and gets in off a mark of 145, another whose been aimed specifically at this, so this seasons from can be ignored and trainer can get him ready. I'd say his price is about right.

Chnce Du Roy 40/1
6th last year and runs off 2lb lower, and after last year trainer has aimed him at this, seems to love the course and will run another big race.

Alvarado 33/1
He's a big fancy of mine, he did really well in the race last year and came from 10th place jumping the last fence to finish 4th, so had plenty left in the tank. After seeing that I'm sure the trainer decided there and then to come back for another go, indeed we haven't seen Alvarado take in any of his usual Cheltenham hcps this season. He had a nice enough prep last time out.

We know he handles the course, perfect age and only a pound higher in the weights, he will run a big race and Moloney will have him closer to the pace this year now that he knows he stays. Excellent Price.

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Replies: 148
By:
Facts
When: 16 Mar 15 22:02
Shutthefrontdoor
Balthazar King
Night In Milan
By:
Big_Issue
When: 16 Mar 15 23:07
A couple of those you named I have also had a little antepost nibble on as well Mac, notably First Lieutenant (avg 52.1) and Carlito Brigante (avg 79.44 but still some 85's on here). The first named is as you say well weighted for one that's run in so many good G1 Chases and still seems to have plenty of class. The second just impressed me with it's front running display at Kelso plus it being classy enough to have won previously as a Hurdler at the Festival.
By:
Eeternaloptimist
When: 16 Mar 15 23:17
It's not a race I get too involved in these days but stop the gold cup at the last in last years race and Teaforthree having been up there all the way is about three of four lengths off the lead. He put a tired jump in there and fell away but he is clearly a good horse. 11 isn't too old for this race and he has a previous third off a fair bit higher mark and more significantly probable weight.
By:
charlieecho
When: 17 Mar 15 00:22
Mac, I'm in the Al Co camp so glad to see you are too. But just check what what you wrote there mate. He ran in the Becher this season, pulling up, strangely, at the last fence. Jumped round fine in ground he wouldn't have liked.Very obviously planned for this since Ayr last season, 2 hurdle races and 1 round the GN fences. Last season he ran at Doncaster in a hurdle race and then went and won the Scottish GN.
Good luck
By:
stevo1
When: 17 Mar 15 08:24
Rocky Creek 2lbs lower should go well again,hopefully not top weight.
The Druids Nephew, won easy at Festival and well in.
By:
layingisthewayforward
When: 17 Mar 15 08:52
Cause of causes.  In form, confirmed stayer, nice racing weight. He'll do at 33's at the moment.
By:
GI MAC
When: 17 Mar 15 17:34

Mar 16, 2015 -- 6:07PM, Big_Issue wrote:


A couple of those you named I have also had a little antepost nibble on as well Mac, notably First Lieutenant (avg 52.1) and Carlito Brigante (avg 79.44 but still some 85's on here). The first named is as you say well weighted for one that's run in so many good G1 Chases and still seems to have plenty of class. The second just impressed me with it's front running display at Kelso plus it being classy enough to have won previously as a Hurdler at the Festival.


doh! of course he did charlie, not sure what I was thinking there, a positive for his chances.

By:
GI MAC
When: 17 Mar 15 17:35
wrong reply!
By:
nocturnal
When: 17 Mar 15 19:02
A few trends from racecaller....last 10 years

Age 9-11 10/10
No more than 1 chase win this season 10/10
1st 3 last completed start 8/10
At least 10 chase runs
Ran over hurdles jan, feb or march 7/10

Age 8-11 39/40 win/ placed runners
9/10 within 1 stone bottom weight
Below 11-06 lb 10/10
OR 143 or above 5/6
Irish bred 7/10
3-6 runs from 1st sept
3m+ chase win 10/10
1-3 h,cap chase wins 10/10

Taking horse numbers 6 (unioniste) down to 41 (saint are),which fits the profile re OR 143 or above,but below 11-06lb in weight,and applying the top 5 stats only,hence the gap,we are left with one horse only

Al Co

If only all races were this easy,10 minutes taken,no need for weights etc.....Note to self,shred formbook,use above method,far less hassle.

GL ALL
By:
PeteTheBloke
When: 17 Mar 15 20:21
Stan and 3.6.5 are NRNB.
By:
jasey
When: 17 Mar 15 22:39
I think all the horses that are "well in" need considering.If you like AC then Godsmejudge must be fancy as well,both entered Saturday.
By:
metro john
When: 18 Mar 15 09:47
A race not for Ante post betting,but Godsmejudge does catch the eye, winning the Scottish National off 139 just  4 lb higher and possibly carrying under 11 stone, will be advising my mates to get this one in the sweepstakes if they get a choice!
By:
GI MAC
When: 18 Mar 15 18:26
Fancied horses I won't be backing this year.

Unioniste: Too much weight, too young.
Shutthefrontdoor: Shocking value and price will only get shorter. He'll be close to topweight so a big ask for an 8yo.
Springheeld: Cannot trust the trainer, form woeful.
The Druids Nephew: An afterthought, was trained to run for his life lto, cannot see him bagging this as well.
Cause of Causes: As above, and a 7yo who don't win Grnd Nationals.
Teaforthree: Hunter chaser nowadays, think his chance has passed.
By:
Facts
When: 18 Mar 15 18:31
One can imagine the script for Shuthefrontdoor has already been writ Happy
By:
GI MAC
When: 18 Mar 15 18:35
Indeed, there's always a story with the National. If he wins I won't be making money but I'll cheer him and his jockey home.
By:
Shrews
When: 18 Mar 15 18:59
What would be a story would be for the late Dessie Hughes' daughter to win with Uttoxeter 2nd Raz De Maree.  It was running on in that race and will carry a low weight if it manages to get in. The only downside is it needs 24 to drop out which is unlikely IMO (although happy to be corrected if somebody has stats that indicate otherwise).
By:
Fabulous
When: 18 Mar 15 19:14
Going by previous years he should be ok Shrews...........apologies if this doesn't work out. 

He also got an entry in The Irish National, which would also be a concern I suppose
By:
Shrews
When: 18 Mar 15 19:42
Came 8th last year, but needs it a bit softer and a low weight. Live outsider if it gets in IMO

https://grandnationalbetting.me.uk/grand-national/maree-aiming-dazzle-aintree/
By:
betilyerded
When: 18 Mar 15 20:09
Im a massive Peter Bowen fan at Aintree (and Ayr) and notice he is giving Al Co a similar prep to Mckelvey who I backed at 40-1 when just failing to land the race a good few years back now, as he is entered to run in the same Bangor handicap hurdle that McKelvey prepped in BUT whilst McKelvey ran an eye catching race in the Becher, if you watch a re-run of this seasons Becher chase Al Co puts in some scarey jumps - admittedly on ground that wouldnt have suited - and got miles behind so its difficult to say whether he took to the fences or not as he did jump round - in his own time and own way.His third behind Call The Cops reads a bit better now too after the festival!

I agree Raz De Maree is a player if theres genuinely soft ground, given his sound run around last year on only his 10th start over fences and if there is then enough good ground horses will probably be pulled out for him to get in,likewise Wyck Hill whose won an Eider on heavy and ran well in the previous seasons Becher. Needs it a bog mind and a fall lto isnt ideal.
By:
Facts
When: 19 Mar 15 02:36
Godsmejudge

Won Scottish National , 2 years ago off 139.
Put up to 148
Run only 7 times since then
Form figs of :-00PP23P0 (over 2 years)

And yet Handicapper has him still on 145 !

Why only a 3 lb drop over 7 losing runs and 2 year duration ?
By:
Facts
When: 19 Mar 15 02:44
Think I have the answer !

Just read barry  rico's thread on the Grand National  Forum Happy
By:
mange
When: 19 Mar 15 07:37
Id say that GODSMEJUDGE has run above its mark Ayr/San since then Facts ...........A solid horse that will run its race from a trainer that knows the time of day & is my only bet at the mo..........
By:
metro john
When: 19 Mar 15 17:28
Plottedup Facts!
By:
GI MAC
When: 19 Mar 15 17:53
First Lieutenant: I was disappointed with that today, folded easily at the business end. He is sure to come on for the run, but its only 3weeks away and I saw no sparkle there, just an old plodder. Also, why have a prep over hurdles, why not let him jump some fences before the big test? I'm put off.
By:
Facts
When: 19 Mar 15 18:35
Ok, I'm convinced. Added Godsmejudge to my other three.
By:
Angel Gabrial
When: 19 Mar 15 19:56
Facts

You might want to add the winner of the race Spring Heeled, we want good ground but if ever there was a horse made for the race it is this chap.
By:
Facts
When: 20 Mar 15 02:34
Irish National ?
By:
Angel Gabrial
When: 20 Mar 15 03:03
The Grand National has been his principle target all season, they are just hanging to see what the weather does. He wouldn`t want much rain.
By:
GoldCupWinner
When: 20 Mar 15 09:04
I can't be having Spring Heeled. I believe when he won at Cheltenham he improved for the step down to 3 miles. He has no chance of staying the trip imo, yes he stayed on past beaten horses at Sandown but he has a lot to make up with godsmejudge on that run and we know that horse will definitely improve for the longer trip.
By:
Angel Gabrial
When: 20 Mar 15 14:28
He stayed on well over 25.5f at Cheltenham so we know that on his day he shows plenty of stamina, perhaps Sandown is not his course, is it similar to Aintree? of course not. He wants proper good ground and his attitude is as good as any in the race.
By:
GI MAC
When: 20 Mar 15 16:36
O’Brien pleased with Alvarado preparations

Trainer Fergal O’Brien says Alvarado is shaping up nicely ahead of next month’s Grand National at Aintree. The 10-year-old impressed as he finished fourth in jump racing’s showpiece last year and has been extremely lightly raced this season, making just one appearance last month at Doncaster.

Following his exploits in 2014, National glory has always been his main aim for the campaign and he is sure to be fresh on April 11.
O’Brien says he is pleased with how his charge is shaping up and is confident he will be able to produce another strong performance at Aintree.

“Everything is looking good and he’s where we want him to be,” the trainer told the Racing Post. “He’s in very good form, I’m very happy with him and wouldn’t swap him for anything.
“He’s very straightforward and can hopefully do as well as he did last year, if not better.”



I've had my second bet on this one...
By:
jasey
When: 20 Mar 15 19:45
Angel..
I like SH but 1 prep is putting me off him.I would like him to run in the Irish GN,then run in GN next year with a few runs not just 1.
By:
Angel Gabrial
When: 20 Mar 15 20:10
Jasey

He won the Kim Muir after a 76 day break, he was never going to be a factor in the Bobby Jo on that ground but it would have been a good blow out for him, fresh may be best.
By:
GI MAC
When: 22 Mar 15 11:39
Yesterdays Bangor race was revealing, Al Co ran a nice prep, trainer delighted with him. On the other hand Godsmejudge ran a woeful race, trainer had this to say on his website:

Alan confessed that he was "disappointed" with Godsmejudge's run over hurdles at Bangor. "We'll have to run a few tests, but that was not him," was the trainer's assessment about our Grand National hope, who will have to bounce back to become a contender for Aintree.

Will have to see what comes out from the stable leading up to the race, but I can't back him after that run, Al Co on the other hand remains on my radar. So from my original shortlist I'me left with:

Rocky Creek
Carlito Brigante (backed)
Al Co
Chance Du Roy
Alvarado (Backed)

Will leave just now until next forfeit stage.
By:
IrisDeBalme
When: 22 Mar 15 12:00
I really like Al co backed him at 40s... hopefully that run will put him spot on... the only thing that concerns me is that GN is only 3 weeks away ... would have preferred him to run couple of weeks back..

PINEAU DE RE - has also been metioned this morning press... I have backed this horse and is far my biggest bet in the race - but I am having quite a few doubts as his form 0P80 doesnt sing out a national winner... and more of keeping the faith bet at this stage... despite the trainer saying he will run a big race...
By:
GI MAC
When: 22 Mar 15 12:45
I didn't think Al Co had a hard race yesterday Iris, trainer seems happy enough.

Personnally I wouldn't be too concerned with PDR's current form, it doesn't really matter with this trainer. He will have targeted this race straight after last year, and you can rely on the trainer to have him spot on, anything beforehand is a lead up to this. HI think he might have two good chances in this, quite liking the look of Royal Knight, another stayer targeted at the race.
By:
betilyerded
When: 22 Mar 15 18:27
Heres something to chew over for anyone interested in Al Co. He wore a noseband for the first time when he won the Scottish National last season and hasnt worn it since. Will it be back on for Aintree? Did it improve him last season? Its something I keep an eye on as unlike blinkers etc. they dont have to be declared.Might just wait for the parade to see if he's sporting them and have a few quid accordingly, particularly if the ground is good, which he realistically needs if he's going to have a chance.
By:
IrisDeBalme
When: 22 Mar 15 19:09
thats good point Bertil... something to look out for...and yes ground is crucial with this horse needs good in the description as with most of Bowen type horses - more i look at his profile the more i fancy his chances - will put more on tomorrow before 33s start disappearing...
By:
GI MAC
When: 24 Mar 15 16:19
Latest confirmation stage today, starting to take shape; Alvarado needs 3 to come out, surely!
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