The 2018 Grand National Looks Set to go to Ireland

Ruben Hill
April 16, 2018

The Grand National is nearly upon us and, in the build-up to the race, you will have seen many fancies from various people. While picking the horse that will win can prove very difficult, one thing that looks to be very possible is that the winner of the race will come from Ireland. We have seen the Irish come over with a strong challenge a few times recently but, this year, they look to be as good as ever, with many leading chances.

The main Irish fancy may be Tiger Roll, who comes here on the back of a great win in the Cross Country Chase at Cheltenham. He is following the same path as Cause Of Causes for the same yard, who won the Cross Country last season before running 2nd in the Grand National. Trainer Gordon Elliott will be hoping that he can go one better in the big one this year.

The horse that has attracted money since Cheltenham alongside Tiger Roll has been Anibale Fly, another horse who put up a very good performance at the Festival. He ran on to finish 3rd in the Cheltenham Gold Cup, and that form line gives him a fantastic chance. His Grand National 2018 odds continue to tumble and he is one of four horses that could be sent off as the race favourite. We often see money come for a horse on the day, and it is that horse that is made the favourite; it would be no surprise to see Anibale Fly as the horse that brings in the money on Saturday.

The other Irish challenger that deserves mentioning is Total Recall, a horse who has had a fantastic season so far. He has won three races out of four but fell in his last run, which came in the Cheltenham Gold Cup. Those backing him will have to excuse that but, if you look at the rest of his form, that gives him a great chance. He was in the process of running a great race in the Gold Cup and would have run Anibale Fly close so there is little to choose from between those two challengers.

The biggest threat to the Irish runners may come from the English trained Blaklion. He has crucial course experience and has jumped over these big fences twice before, including when winning the Becher Chase in December. He has a big weight to carry, much more than when he finished 4th in the 2017 National but he cannot be written off. He looks to be in good heart and again; the vital experience he has on the Aintree course will help his cause on Saturday.

We don’t have long to wait until the big race takes place and everyone will now be finalising their selections. While many people will have different fancies, one thing we will agree on is that the Irish-trained runners are prominent in the betting, and they look to have a great chance of taking the trophy home with them.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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