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april 22nd 11.07
A little look at the Irish Grand National
A few points to note – three of the last five winners were having their first run in a handicap, four of the last twelve winners had run in the National Hunt Chase @ Cheltenham. You have to go back to 1997 to find a winner aged older than ten. Horses at the lower end of the handicap do best – the last ten winners have been rated 139,153,137,136,142,128,135,132,131,136
The 153 was Our Duke and don't think there is something like him running this year
In the last 5 runnings  (looking at 6 place option) - only 6 runners rated 143+ finished in the top 6
This narrows down the field nicely for me and I like the look of Gun Digger running off 139 with just 10-3 on his back. He fell last time out in the NH Chase but was going as well as anything with a mile to go suggesting the trip shouldn’t be a problem. This is his first run in a handicap so he ticks both of those boxes.
Auvergnat – always happy to forgive one bad run, connections swerved the Grand National having been allocated a big weight compared to his Irish rating. He went for the Cross Country Chase at Cheltenham but didn’t run well – it was found he had a bad cut to his leg. A runaway winner of the Paddy Power Chase at Christmas on good ground now rated 143 but O’Connor takes off 5lb to effectively run off 138. She isn’t a bad booking and has won a Ladies National round Fairyhouse.
Bellow Mome runs off the minimum 10 stone having just got into the race following a 3rd place to Pairofbrowneyes in the Leinster National. That was its second run back after a near two year break and is still pretty unexposed over long trips.
A small mention for Forever Gold
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