The Grand National is just a month away and as the excitement builds for what is often referred to as the biggest test of horse and rider, punters are already scrambling for the form guides and scouring the internet for the best odds on Grand National. It is believed that half of adults in the United Kingdom have a punt on the famous race and as people make their selections, one of the main things they look out for is the horse’s trainer. Gordon Elliott, who has been hugely successful at both the Cheltenham Festival and the Grand National in recent years, is normally worth backing. So, read on as we talk you through his top entries this year.
Tiger Roll – 5/1
Tiger Roll is out to make history in this year’s National. The outright favourite is aiming to become the first horse since the legendary Red Rum to win the race three times, whilst he’ll be the only horse to win it three times on the trot. The 10-year-old won the Boyne Hurdle and the Cheltenham Cross Country Chase in the build up to last year’s National and is following the same route this year.
However, after not running since last year’s outing at Aintree, when he beat Magic Of Light by 2-and-three-quarter lengths, Tiger Roll came fifth at Navan last month, 14-and-a-half lengths behind the leader Cracking Smart. Although Elliott claimed that he was ‘thrilled’ with his run. The 10-year-old, who is often in the headlines regarding horse racing news, is evens to scoop his third successive Cross Country Chase at Prestbury Park and make it four wins on the trot at the Cheltenham Festival.
Alpha Des Obeaux – 25/1
Since joining Elliott’s yard in October 2018, Alpha Des Obeaux has won just once and that victory came the following month in a Chase at Thurles, beating Vaseur Lido by just over one length. Consistency has been key for the 10-year-old with eight placed finishes since the move 16 months ago, including a third-place finish in the Grade Three Becher Handicap Chase at the famous Aintree course last December.
The Michael O’Leary-owned horse, who is regularly ridden by Davy Russell, has placed in his last six races with three second places and as many thirds. Alpha Des Obeaux could run three more times before taking on the Aintree hurdles once more, with early entries in the Leinster National Handicap Chase, the Cheltenham Ultima Handicap Chase and the illustrious Cheltenham Gold Cup.
Meanwhile, this won’t be the 10-year-old’s first crack at the Grand National. He fell at the Chair – the tallest hurdle – whilst running well in the 2018 race as Tiger Roll stomped to his first victory.
The Storyteller – 33/1
Wins are few and far between for this National outsider, who is also regularly ridden by Russell. With just seven victories in 25 career jump races, The Storyteller has a win rate of just 28%. The nine-year-old failed to pick up a win last season despite entering seven races, although, after nine races, he managed to win at Clonmel last December, winning the Jim Strang & Sons Kilsheelan Hurdle by a length-and-a-half, whilst his National rival Total Recall, who is trained by Champion Trainer Willie Mullins, finished third.
The Chestnut Gelding will head to the Cheltenham Festival, where he has won in the past, for the Pertemps Network Final Handicap Hurdle, which he is joint-second favourite to win alongside stablemate Sire Du Berlais and Relegate, before heading to Aintree next month.