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Tuesday, February 5, 2008


Ten-time Grade One winner Beef Or Salmon heads the weights for the 2008 John Smith’s Grand National on a mark of 11st 12lb.
He is one of a record 105 horses in the handicap (ie weighted down to and including the minimum 10 stone) for jump racing’s most famous prize, which will be worth a record £800,000 when run on Saturday, April 5, when - with 149 horses qualified - a maximum field of 40 looks assured.

British Horseracing Authority Head of Handicapping Phil Smith has burned the midnight oil over the past week framing the John Smith’s Grand National weights and his findings were unveiled today at a lunch in London attended by most of jump racing’s biggest names.

There were 87 horses in the handicap when last year’s weights were announced and the previous record was 92 in 2005.
Following Beef Or Salmon on 11st 10lb at the top of the handicap are Celestial Gold, winner of the 2006 totesport Bowl at Aintree, and the Nicky Richards-trained Turpin Green.

Champion trainer Paul Nicholls has yet to win the John Smith’s Grand National but is responsible for eight entries including the antepost favourite Mr Pointment, who has been allotted a mark of 11st 8lb.

Meanwhile, the sport’s biggest owner J P McManus, his trainer Jonjo O’Neill and 12-time champion jockey Tony McCoy also look set to bid for a first win in the famous contest with Butler’s Cabin (11st), winner of the Irish Grand National last season.

There are a record-equalling 38 Irish-trained entries of which Snowy Morning (10st 12lb), trained like the 2005 winner Hedgehunter (11st 9lb) in Co Carlow by Willie Mullins, is most prominent in the betting. Hedgehunter’s weight compares with the 11st 1lb he carried to victory three years ago
Irish-trained horses have won six of the last nine John Smith’s Grand Nationals and other notable entries include Royal County Star (10st 7lb) and Newbay Prop (10st 1lb), who hail from Tony Martin’s stable, as well as 2006 Irish Grand National winner Point Barrow (10st 10lb), who fell at the first when 8/1 co-favourite in last year’s race.

Although the 2007 winner Silver Birch will miss the race due to an injury, last year’s form is well represented by the second McKelvey (10st 11lb), third Slim Pickings (11st) and fourth Philson Run (10st 5lb). They respectively carried 10st 4lb, 10st 8lb and 10st 5lb last year.

Other notable entries include Simon (11st 4lb), owned and bred by Mercy Rimell, whose late husband Fred trained four Grand National winners, Bewleys Berry (10st 11lb), who has been targetted at Aintree all season by his Co Durham trainer Howard Johnson, the John Quinn-trained Character Building (10st 5lb) and Cloudy Lane (10st 8lb), trained by Donald McCain junior - whose father Ginger famously saddled four winners of the great race including the legendary Red Rum (1973, 1974 and 1977). The novice Joe Lively has been allotted 11st 4lb.

Julian Thick, Aintree’s Managing Director, commented: “The quality of this year’s John Smith Grand National is shown by the fact that a record 105 of the 149 qualified entries are in the handicap. We wish the best of luck to connections of all the contenders and the countdown to Saturday, April 5, is now well and truly underway.”
For further information, please contact Emma Owen, Aintree’s Marketing & PR Manager, on 0151 522 2906 or 07917 266511 or e-mail emma.owen@jockeyclubracecourses.com

Class 1, Grade 3, £800,000 total Prize Fund, Aintree, Saturday, April 5, 2008. For six-year-olds old and upwards which are allotted a rating of 110 or more by the BHA Head of Handicapping following a review of the horses entered and after taking account of races run up to and including February 3, 2008. Horses which are not qualified for a rating in Great Britain or Ireland at January 29, 2008, may also be entered. Such horses may be eligible for a weight providing the Handicapper is satisfied that the horse's racecourse performances to February 3, 2008, would merit a minimum rating of 110. To qualify horses must have run at least three times in Steeple Chases run under the Rules of Racing of the same Recognised Turf Authority up to and including February 3, 2008. At the Handicapper's discretion such horses may be allocated a rating. The decision of the BHA Head of Handicapping shall be final. No penalties after publication of the weights. Entries closed January 29, entries revealed January 30 (150 entries, 1 not qualified), weights revealed February 5, first forfeit stage March 4, second forfeit stage March 18. Five/six-day confirmation stage March 31, final declaration stage 10.00am, April 3. Form figures supplied by Weatherbys and are correct up to and including the racing of Sunday, February 3.

Form Horse Age Owner Trainer
2100-34 BEEF OR SALMON (IRE) 12-11-12 Joe Craig Michael Hourigan IRE
130/U1/-P CELESTIAL GOLD (IRE) 10-11-10 David Johnson David Pipe
P235-41 TURPIN GREEN (IRE) 9-11-10 Trevor Hemmings Nicky Richards
2/500-P5 HEDGEHUNTER (IRE) 12-11-09 Trevor Hemmings Willie Mullins IRE
P-26251 HI CLOY (IRE) 11-11-09 Susan McCloy Michael Hourigan IRE
U-135P1 KNOWHERE (IRE) 10 -11-08 Raymond Mould Nigel Twiston-Davies
5/122-41 MR POINTMENT (IRE) 9-11-08 Stockton Heath Racing Paul Nicholls
5/U40-16 OLLIE MAGERN 10-11-08 Roger Nicholls Nigel Twiston-Davies
4030-14 FORGET THE PAST 10-11-07 Sean Mulryan Michael O'Brien IRE
44R5-33 MONKERHOSTIN (FR) 11-11-07 Martin St Quinton Philip Hobbs
210P-P1 TURKO (FR) 6-11-07 The Stewart Family Paul Nicholls
1/23P-36 FOREMAN (GER) 10-11-06 J P McManus Charlie Swan IRE
03-4425 MADISON DU BERLAIS (FR) 7-11-06 Roger Stanley & Yvonne Reynolds II David Pipe
3U/232/-0 RULE SUPREME (IRE) 12-11-05 John Fallon Willie Mullins IRE
513P-P4 BILLYVODDAN (IRE) 9-11-04 Trevor Hemmings Henry Daly
112111 JOE LIVELY (IRE) 9-11-04 Richard Dimond Colin Tizzard
21B213 KNIGHT LEGEND (IRE) 9-11-04 Lynn Wilson Jessica Harrington IRE
11F-52U SIMON 9-11-04 Mercy Rimell John Spearing
1120-1P OPERA MUNDI (FR) 6-11-03 Sir Robert Ogden Paul Nicholls
66-3632 UNGARO (FR) 9-11-03 Sir Robert Ogden Keith Reveley
r416F5 IRON MAN (FR) 7-11-02 Roddy Owen & Paul Fullagar Peter Bowen
F/2520P-1 THISTHATANDTOTHER (IRE) 12-11-02 Graham Roach Paul Nicholls
4361-2P DREAM ALLIANCE 7-11-01 The Alliance Partnership Philip Hobbs
6P-24121 FUNDAMENTALIST (IRE) 10-11-01 C Cornes Nigel Twiston-Davies
43011-30 BUTLER'S CABIN (FR) 8-11-00 J P McManus Jonjo O'Neill
F53-62S SLIM PICKINGS (IRE) 9-11-00 Doubtful Five Syndicate Tom Taaffe IRE
4P3F651 CHELSEA HARBOUR (IRE) 8-10-13 P Duffin Tom Mullins IRE
400-0110 VODKA BLEU (FR) 9-10-13 David Johnson David Pipe
00-6300 L'AMI (FR) 9-10-12 J P McManus Francois Doumen FR
124-F11 SNOWY MORNING (IRE) 8-10-12 Quayside Syndicate Willie Mullins IRE
1-0010F ALEXANDER TAIPAN (IRE) 8-10-11 Noel O'Callaghan Willie Mullins IRE
P/420F-2 BEWLEYS BERRY (IRE) 10-10-11 Andrea & Graham Wylie Howard Johnson
2P0450- CONTRABAND 10-10-11 Fergus Wilson Paul Murphy
1103-PP DOM D'ORGEVAL (FR) 8-10-11 A White and Mrs Underhill David Pipe
410612- MCKELVEY (IRE) 9-10-11 N Elliott Peter Bowen
1400-10 ROMAN ARK 10-10-11 Richard Collins Malcolm Jefferson
P-20030 JOAACI (IRE) 8-10-10 David Johnson David Pipe
2-00004 POINT BARROW (IRE) 10-10-10 Mrs P Clune Hughes Patrick Hughes IRE
PP0-10P SIR REMBRANDT (IRE) 12-10-10 Alan Hordle Victor Dartnall
P0150P- CORNISH REBEL (IRE) 11-10-09 Halewood International Ltd Lisa Williamson
PP2-P01 D'ARGENT (IRE) 11-10-09 Nigel Bunter Alan King
30-434P NO FULL (FR) 7-10-09 Mrs P Doyle Eoin Doyle IRE
3-F106P BAILY BREEZE (IRE) 9-10-08 R Scott Mouse Morris IRE
522-360 BOB HALL (IRE) 7-10-08 J P McManus Jonjo O'Neil
201U-51 CLOUDY LANE 8-10-08 Trevor Hemmings Donald McCain Jnr
U22P-22 KING JOHNS CASTLE (IRE) 9-10-08 J P McManus Arthur Moore IRE
422434- MON MOME (FR) 8-10-08 Vida Bingham Venetia Williams
422F22- NINE DE SIVOLA (FR) 7-10-08 The DPRP Sivola Partnership Ferdy Murphy
132000 ALWAYS WAINING (IRE) 7-10-07 Mr & Mrs Peter Douglas Peter Bowen
026-2P0 CORNISH SETT (IRE) 9-10-07 Peter Hart Paul Nicholls
PP-1043 NAUNTON BROOK 9-10-07 David Langdon Nigel Twiston-Davies
0-23113 OVER THE CREEK 9-10-07 David Johnson David Pipe
5423-54 PARSONS LEGACY (IRE) 10-10-07R Offer Philip Hobbs
U50P-0U PATSY HALL (IRE) 8-10-07 C Byrne Tony Martin IRE
6F-04U33 ROYAL AUCLAIR (FR) 11-10-07 Clive Smith Paul Nicholls
0211-U1 ROYAL COUNTY STAR (IRE) 9-10-07 Dunsany Racing Syndicate Tony Martin IRE
554-5062 TUMBLING DICE (IRE) 9-10-07 Lucy Donegan Tom Taaffe IRE
FP/24/0-14 BACKBEAT (IRE) 11-10-06 Andrea & Graham Wylie Howard Johnson
6/4P/-0P2 COMPLY OR DIE (IRE) 9-10-06 David Johnson David Pipe
UU-20U5 IDLE TALK (IRE) 9-10-06 Trevor Hemmings Donald McCain Jnr
2P-4300F KELAMI (FR) 10-10-06 Halewood International Ltd Francois Doumen FR
11305-54 MILAN DEUX MILLE (FR) 6-10-06 Fergus & Judith Wilson David Pipe
3PF-013 NADOVER (FR) 7-10-06 Tony Hayward and Barry Fulton Charlie Mann
0-56442 BLACK APALACHI (IRE) 9-10-05 Gerard Burke Dessie Hughes IRE
1412P-3 CHARACTER BUILDING (IRE) 8-10-05 E Wright John Quinn
11P-0P6 HOMER WELLS (IRE) 10-10-05 Mrs M McMahon Willie Mullins IRE
135326 PATMAN DU CHARMIL (FR) 6-10-05 Raymond Mould Nigel Twiston-Davies
1P6/04-2 PHILSON RUN (IRE) 12-10-05 Gale Force One Nick Williams
14-55P5 URSUMMAN (IRE) 9-10-05 J P McManus Niall Madden IRE
62-166P ARDAGHEY (IRE) 9-10-04 D & S Goodman Nigel Twiston-Davies
P11-0PP BARON WINDRUSH 10-10-04 The Double Octagon Partnership Nigel Twiston-Davies
3-55034 BOYCHUK (IRE) 7-10-04 Diana Whateley Philip Hobbs
0F251P-0 DUN DOIRE (IRE) 9-10-04 Dunderry Racing Syndicate Tony Martin IRE
06/001P- JOES EDGE (IRE) 11-10-04 Chemipetro Limited Ferdy Murphy
44-31P3 KILBEGGAN BLADE 9-10-04 K & Mrs A Doocey Tom George
113122 COOL RUNNING (IRE) 8-10-03 J P McManus Christy Roche IRE
10F0/16- DROMBEAG (IRE) 10-10-03 J P McManus Jonjo O'Neill
21-0PF0 DUNBRODY MILLAR (IRE) 10-10-03Dundon Else Partnership Peter Bowen
43-6303 IN THE HIGH GRASS (IRE) 7-10-03 Mrs M Hally Tom Taaffe IRE
146/0/10- LONGSHANKS 11-10-03 Alan Halsall Kim Bailey
312/452- OSSMOSES (IRE) 11-10-03 Don Forster Don Forster
P-2UU46 LE DUC (FR) 9-10-02 The Stewart Family Paul Nicholls
U0-6000 LIVINGSTONEBRAMBLE (IRE) 12-10-02 Favourites Racing Willie Mullins IRE
65-2FP0 MERDEKA (IRE) 8-10-02 Maurice Clifford Tom Taaffe IRE
06045P- NIRVANA DU BOURG (FR) 7-10-02 Trevor Hemmings Venetia Williams
3/02-223 PAK JACK (FR) 8-10-02 The Bellflower Pak Jack Partnership Richard Phillips
3542-4P THEATRE KNIGHT (IRE) 10-10-02 Andrea & Graham Wylie Howard Johnson
210123 TOM SAYERS (IRE) 10-10-02 Capt Bill Edwards-Heathcote Philip Hobbs
1650PP BALLYCASSIDY (IRE) 12-10-01 Roddy Owen & Paul Fullagar Peter Bowen
141-1F4 BLUE SPLASH (FR) 8-10-01 Walters Plant Hire Ltd Peter Bowen
P/14P-6P BOB BOB BOBBIN 9-10-01 Sarah Tizzard Colin Tizzard
P/013/-62 CAPTAIN CORELLI 11-10-01 Patrick Bancroft Philip Hobbs
P12/-P225 ERIC'S CHARM (FR) 10-10-01 Martin St Quinton & Peter Deal Oliver Sherwood
340-050 HEAR THE ECHO (IRE) 7-10-01 Gigginstown House Stud Mouse Morris IRE
U0-10614 IRISH RAPTOR (IRE) 9-10-01 Caroline Beresford-Wylie Nigel Twiston-Davies
11F2-00 LOULOU NIVERNAIS (FR) 9-10-01 Mrs A Heayns Nigel Hawke
3P-5P13 NEWBAY PROP (IRE) 9-10-01 Bill Moffett Tony Martin IRE
330-111 RISK ACCESSOR (IRE) 13-10-01 J P McManus Jonjo O'Neill
110-332 BANNISTER LANE 8-10-00 Shaw Hill Golf Club(Sage Cott Props Ltd) Donald McCain Jnr
1F-0406 GLENFINN CAPTAIN (IRE) 9-10-00 J P McManus Tom Taaffe IRE
P11056 LAMPION DU BOST (FR) 9-10-00 The Dodoz Partnership Jim Goldie
122-505 LANKAWI 6-10-00 Jill Day Peter Bowen
0P-14F0 MAJADAL (FR) 10-10-00 Fergus Wilson Michael Scudamore
60F0U0 TOMMY SPAR 8-10-00 Ralph Morgans Peter Bowen
4312-34 WHISPERED SECRET (GER) 9-10-00 David Manasseh David Pipe
12-P4P1 BALLYFOY (IRE) 7-9-13 M George Tom George
F60P00- INNOX (FR) 12-9-13 J P McManus Jonjo O'Neill
053U3P- SWEET DIVERSION (IRE) 9-9-13 Ian Marshall Paul Nicholls
P0P0-00 TAKE THE STAND (IRE) 12-9-13 David Robbins Frank Ridge Peter Bowen
621P1F/- YOU'RE SPECIAL (USA) 11-9-13 Diane O' Rourke Ferdy Murphy
220236 BOTHAR NA (IRE) 9-9-12 Mrs Michael O'Dwyer Willie Mullins IRE
0/1P061/- FUSTRIEN DU PAON (FR) 12-9-12 Fergus Wilson Richard Chotard FR
6P-6FP23 LEADING MAN (IRE) 8-9-12 Mrs C McKeane Ferdy Murphy
P62P-P4 NITRAT (FR) 7-9-12 Peter Hans Vogt Francois Doumen FR
123112- NOIR ET VERT (FR) 7-9-12 Plantation Stud Ferdy Murphy
0-46320 OODACHEE 9-9-12 Modreeny Syndicate Charlie Swan IRE
323-0P3 PREACHER BOY 9-9-12 Hunt & Co (Bournemouth) Ltd Ron Hodges
415/-2P0 AZULEJO (FR) 10-9-11 J Wilson & T Wilson Michael Scudamore
3110-PP FLINTOFF (USA) 7-9-11 Andrew Flintoff & Paul Beck Venetia Williams
200-563 FLYING ENTERPRISE (IRE) 8-9-11 Malcolm Edwards Evan Williams
231453 IRISH WOLF (FR) 8-9-11 The Hacking Partnership Peter Bowen
06P-040 ST MATTHEW (USA) 10-9-11 Keith Nicholson Sue Smith
20-0340 BROOKLYN BREEZE (IRE) 11-9-10 Ashleybank Investments Limited Len Lungo
2/1F-1SF NOT LEFT YET (IRE) 7-9-10 David Johnson David Pipe
4//0041/-P OUR ARMAGEDDON (NZ) 11-9-10 Leslie Garrett Richard Guest
1P-PPP2P PASS ME BY 9-9-10 Paul Beck Venetia Williams
4120022 BURNTOAKBOY 10-9-09 Dr Richard and Laura Newland Dr Richard Newland
0/04P60- NATIVE JACK (IRE) 14-9-09 G Burke/R Bagnall/N O'Farrell/K Sexton Philip Rothwell IRE
U-F01554 SEA DIVA (IRE) 8-9-09 C O'Reilly Dessie Hughes IRE
2460-425 OSCAR INDIA (IRE) 9-9-08 A Burns Henry de Bromhead IRE
1120-0P MALETTON (FR) 8-9-07 Malcolm Edwards Evan Williams
P0P-53PP ROYAL ROSA (FR) 9-9-07 Andrea & Graham Wylie Howard Johnson
PPU-043 THE OUTLIER (IRE) 10-9-07 P Murphy Venetia Williams
4232/-41 BEANTOWN (IRE) 10-9-05 Eoin Barry Sean Aherne IRE
2003FP MODEL SON (IRE) 10-9-05 P J Hughes Developments Ltd Paul Blockley
6/312F//-6 SIXO (IRE) 11-9-05 Matt Archer & The Late Jean Broadhurst David Pipe
F0030-30 ANOTHER RUM (IRE) 10-9-03 Ronnie Lilley John Weymes
F0-45U1 MCEVOY (IRE) 8-9-03 Phil Cunningham Evan Williams
U/1431-5P BOSHAM MILL 10-9-02 Mark Gichero Brendan Powell
31-4UP6 SILVER JACK (IRE) 10-9-02 Mrs J Batey Martin Todhunter
6P-06110 VICTORY GUNNER (IRE) 10-9-02 Ron Bartlett & F Ayres Craig Roberts
501/-P50P FINAL ACT (IRE) 12-9-01 George Ross John Murphy IRE
4PP02P MR ED (IRE) 10-9-01 Gwilym Morris Peter Bowen
P165FP JUFUL TENNIS (FR) 11-9-00 Jean-Paul Senechal Francois Cottin FR
3-61520 HENRY'S PRIDE (IRE) 8-8-12 P J Hughes Developments Ltd Alison Thorpe
12/122/-4 TOULOUSE-LAUTREC (IRE) 12-8-12 John French Tom George
012655 SECRETOFSHAMBHALA (IRE) 9-8-11 Michael McGinley Tom Mullins IRE
500P-61 WONDERKID 8-8-11 Bill Moffett Tony Martin IRE
4P-2431 BENGO (IRE) 8-8-09 Willsford Racing Incorporated Ben De Haan
PP0-012 GARDASEE (GER) 6 NQ A Helaissi Kahlil Burke

150 entries, 149 qualified
38 Irish-trained entries
5 French-trained entries

(at the time of entry)

Horse Age 2008 2007 Current Trainer
BALLYCASSIDY (IRE) 12 10-01 10-09 Peter Bowen
BEWLEYS BERRY (IRE) 10 10-11 10-07 Howard Johnson
BILLYVODDAN (IRE) 9 11-04 11-04 Henry Daly
BOTHAR NA (IRE) 9 9-12 10-06 Willie Mullins IRE
CORNISH REBEL (IRE) 11 10-09 11-02 Lisa Williamson
DUN DOIRE (IRE) 9 10-04 10-08 Tony Martin IRE
DUNBRODY MILLAR (IRE) 10 10-03 10-01 Peter Bowen
FORGET THE PAST 10 11-07 11-09 Michael O'Brien IRE
HEDGEHUNTER (IRE) 12 11-09 11-12 Willie Mullins IRE
HOMER WELLS (IRE) 10 10-05 10-06 Willie Mullins IRE
IDLE TALK (IRE) 9 10-06 11-02 Donald McCain Jnr
INNOX (FR) 12 9-13 10-08 Jonjo O'Neill
IRON MAN (FR) 7 11-02 9-12 Peter Bowen
JOES EDGE (IRE) 11 10-04 10-02 Ferdy Murphy
KELAMI (FR) 10 10-06 10-12 Francois Doumen FR
KILBEGGAN BLADE 9 10-04 10-02 Tom George
KNOWHERE (IRE) 10 11-08 10-13 Nigel Twiston-Davies
L'AMI (FR) 9 10-12 11-08 Francois Doumen FR
LE DUC (FR) 9 10-02 10-02 Paul Nicholls
LIVINGSTONEBRAMBLE (IRE) 12 10-02 10-09 Willie Mullins IRE
LONGSHANKS 11 10-03 10-07 Kim Bailey
MCKELVEY (IRE) 9 10-11 10-04 Peter Bowen
MODEL SON (IRE) 10 9-05 9-06 Paul Blockley
MONKERHOSTIN (FR) 11 11-07 11-06 Philip Hobbs
NAUNTON BROOK 9 10-07 10-04 Nigel Twiston-Davies
NIRVANA DU BOURG (FR) 7 10-02 10-08 Venetia Williams
NITRAT (FR) 7 9-12 9-11 Francois Doumen FR
OLLIE MAGERN 10 11-08 11-07 Nigel Twiston-Davies
OSSMOSES (IRE) 11 10-03 10-05 Don Forster
PARSONS LEGACY (IRE) 10 10-07 9-12 Philip Hobbs
PHILSON RUN (IRE) 12 10-05 10-05 Nick Williams
POINT BARROW (IRE) 10 10-10 10-12 Patrick Hughes IRE
PREACHER BOY 9 9-12 10-03 Ron Hodges
RISK ACCESSOR (IRE) 13 10-01 10-02 Jonjo O'Neill
ROYAL AUCLAIR (FR) 11 10-07 11-01 Paul Nicholls
SIMON 9 11-04 10-11 John Spearing
SIR REMBRANDT (IRE) 12 10-10 11-04 Victor Dartnall
SLIM PICKINGS (IRE) 9 11-00 10-08 Tom Taaffe IRE
TAKE THE STAND (IRE) 12 9-13 10-12 Peter Bowen
THE OUTLIER (IRE) 10 9-07 10-05 Venetia Williams
THEATRE KNIGHT (IRE) 10 10-02 8-11 Howard Johnson
THISTHATANDTOTHER (IRE) 12 11-02 11-05 Paul Nicholls
TURPIN GREEN (IRE) 9 11-10 11-01 Nicky Richards
URSUMMAN (IRE) 9 10-05 10-07 Niall Madden IRE
Top-weighted horses at the John Smith’s Grand National Weights Lunch Since 1997

Horse Age/Weight
Beef Or Salmon 12-11-12
Celestial Gold 10-11-10
Turpin Green 9-11-10
Hedgehunter 12-11-09
Hi Cloy 11-11-09
Knowhere 10-11-08
Mr Pointment 9-11-08
Ollie Magern 10-11-08
Forget The Past 10-11-07
Monkerhostin 11-11-07
Turko 6-11-07
Number of entries 150
Number in handicap 105

Horse Age/Weight Position at Aintree (weights did not rise)
Exotic Dancer 7-11-12 NR
Hedgehunter 11-11-12 9th
Forget The Past 9-11-09 NR
Fota Island 11-11-09 NR
Louping D’Ainay 8-11-09 NR
Eurotrek 11-11-08 PU bef 22
L’Ami 8-11-08 10th
State Of Play 7-11-08 NR
Ollie Magern 9-11-07 NR
Monkerhostin 10-11-6 REF 7th
Number of entries 119
Number in handicap 87
Weights (at time of weights lunch) of first four home
1st Silver Birch 10-06
2nd McKelvey 10-04
3rd Slim Pickings 10-08
4th Philson Run 10-05

Horse Age/Weight Position at Aintree (weights rose by 2lb)
Monkerhostin 9-11-12 NR
Royal Auclair 9-11-10 Fell 1st
Hedgehunter 10-11-10 2nd
Hi Cloy 9-11-09 NR
Fondmort 10-11-08 NR
Cornish Rebel 9-11-07 PU bef 19
Therealbandit 9-11-07 PU bef 27
One Knight 10-11-07 NR
Joaaci 6-11-06 NR
It Takes Time 12-11-06 PU bef 29
Number of entries 148
Number in handicap 85
Weights (at time of weights lunch) of first four home
1st Numbersixvalverde 10-06
2nd Hedgehunter 11-10
3rd Clan Royal 10-08
4th Nil Desperandum 10-05

Horse Age/Weight Position at Aintree (weights rose by 3lb)
Grey Abbey 11-11-12 NR
Sir Rembrandt 9-11-10 NR
Keen Leader 9-11-09 NR
Le Coudray 11-11-09 PU Bef 21
Kamillo 7-11-09 NR
First Gold 12-11-08 NR
Seebald 10-11-08 NR
Royal Auclair 8-11-07 2nd
Rince Ri 12-11-07 NR
One Knight 9-11-06 NR
Number of entries 152
Number in handicap 92
Weights (at time of weights lunch) of first four home
1st Hedgehunter 10-12
2nd Royal Auclair 11-07
3rd Simply Gifted 10-03
4th It Takes Time 10-08

Horse Age/Weight Position at Aintree (weights rose by 3lb)
First Gold 11-11-12 NR
Rince Ri 11-11-10 NR
Harbour Pilot 9-11-10 NR
Fondmort 8-11-10 NR
Le Coudray 10-11-09 Fell 22nd
Commanche Court 11-11-08 NR
Valley Henry 9-11-08 NR
Monty’s Pass 11-11-07 4th
What’s Up Boys 10-11-06 BD 6th
Iris Royal 8-11-06 NR
Number of entries 122
Number in handicap 66
Weights (at time of weights lunch) of first four home
1st Amberleigh House 10-07
2nd Clan Royal 10-02
3rd Lord Atterbury 9-12
4th Monty’s Pass 11-07
Horse Age/Weight Position at Aintree (weights rose by 2lb)
Florida Pearl 11-11-12 NR
Marlborough 11-11-12 NR
Behrajan 8-11-10 10th
Cyfor Malta 10-11-09 NR
Kingsmark 10-11-09 NR
Foxchapel King 10-11-08 NR
What’s Up Boys 9-11-08 NR
Gingembre 9-11-07 PU bef 24th
Hussard Collonges 8-11-07 NR
Rince Ri 10-11-07 NR
Shotgun Willy 9-11-07 PU bef 22nd
Number of entries 149
Number in handicap 67
Weights (at time of weights lunch) of first four home
1st Monty’s Pass 10-05
2nd Supreme Glory 10-00
3rd Amberleigh House 10-02
4th Gunner Welburn 10-00
Horse Age/Weight Position at Aintree (weights rose by 5lb)
Florida Pearl 10-11-12 NR
First Gold 9-11-11 NR
Behrajan 7-11-08 NR
Rince Ri 9-11-08 NR
Marlborough 10-11-07 Fell 1st
Alexander Banquet 9-11-06 UR 6th
Kingsmark 9-11-04 4th
Legal Right 9-11-04 NR
What’s Up Boys 8-11-01 2nd
Lyreen Wonder 9-10-13 UR 20th
Number of entries 144
Number in handicap 33
Weights (at time of weights lunch) of first four home
1st Bindaree 9-13
2nd What’s Up Boys 11-01
3rd Blowing Wind 10-01
4th Kingsmark 11-04

Horse Age/Weight Position at Aintree (weights rose by 9lb)
See More Business 11-12-00 NR
Florida Pearl 9-11-13 NR
Alexander Banquet 8-11-09 NR
Fadalko 8-11-06 NR
Marlborough 9-11-06 NR
Beau 8-11-01 UR 20th
Commanche Court 8-11-01 NR
Young Kenny 10-10-12 NR
The Outback Way 11-10-11 NR
Micko’s Dream 9-10-10 NR
Papillon 10-10-10 4th
Number of entries 133
Number in handicap 39
Weights (at time of weights lunch) of first four home
1st Red Marauder 10-02
2nd Smarty 9-05
3rd Blowing Wind 10-00
4th Papillon 10-10
Horse Age/Weight Position at Aintree (weights did not rise)
Young Kenny 9-12-00 Fell 10th
Bobby Grant 9-11-12 NR
Suny Bay 11-11-12 13th
Simply Dashing 9-11-11 NR
Celibate 9-11-11 NR
Tresor De Mai 6-11-11 NR
Gloria Victis 6-11-10 NR
The Outback Way 10-11-09 NR
Escartefigue 8-11-09 UR 30th
The Grey Monk 12-11-08 NR
Djeddah 9-11-08 9th
Number of entries 105
Number in handicap 66
Weights (at time of weights lunch) of first four home
1st Papillon 10-12
2nd Mely Moss 10-01
3rd Niki Dee 10-13
4th Brave Highlander 9-09
Horse Age/Weight Position at Aintree (weights did not rise)
Teeton Mill 10-12-00 NR
Suny Bay 10-11-13 13th
Escartefigue 7-11-08 NR
Cyfor Malta 6-11-04 NR
General Wolfe 10-11-01 12th
Earth Summit 11-11-00 8th
Go Ballistic 10-10-13 NR
Or Royal 8-10-12 NR
Lord Gyllene 11-10-12 NR
Coome Hill 10-10-11 18th
Cyborgo 9-10-11 PU bef 19
Number of entries 103
Number in handicap 29
Weights (at time of weights lunch) of first four home
1st Bobbyjo 9-00
2nd Blue Charm 8-12
3rd Call It A Day 10-00
4th Addington Boy 10-07
Horse Age/Weight Position at Aintree (weights did not rise)
Suny Bay 9-12-00 2nd
The Grey Monk 10-11-08 NR
Couldnt Be Better 11-11-07 NR
Cyborgo 8-11-07 NR
Senor El Betrutti 9-11-05 NR
Addington Boy 10-11-05 NR
Coome Hill 9-11-05 NR
Rough Quest 12-11-04 PU bef 29th
Challenger Du Luc 8-11-03 Fell 1st
Belmont King 10-11-02 NR
Number of entries 105
Number in handicap 25
Weights (at time of weights lunch) of first four home
1st Earth Summit 10-05
2nd Suny Bay 12-00
3rd Samlee 9-04
4th St Mellion Fairway 9-05
Horse Age/Weight Position at Aintree (weights did not rise)
Dublin Flyer 11-12-00 NR
Master Oats 11-11-10 5th
Couldnt Be Better 10-11-05 NR
Young Hustler 10-10-13 NR
Flashing Steel 12-10-11 NR
Challenger Du Luc 7-10-09 NR
Nahthen Lad 8-10-09 9th
Coome Hill 8-10-06 NR
Maamur 9-10-04 NR
Amtrak Express 10-10-04 NR
King Of The Gales 10-10-04 NR
Son Of War 10-10-04 NR
Lo Stregone 11-10-04 PU 27th
Number of entries 102
Number in handicap 21

Weights (at time of weights lunch) of first four home
1st Lord Gyllene 9-13
2nd Suny Bay 10-03
3rd Camelot Knight 8-06
4th Buckboard Bounce 10-01

Breakdown of Weights by Trainer with past successes in the John Smith’s Grand National
Peter Bowen
Iron Man (11-02)
McKelvey (10-11)
Always Waining (10-07)
Dunbrody Millar (10-03)
Ballycassidy (10-01)
Blue Splash (10-01)
Lankawi (10-00)
Tommy Spar (10-00)
Take The Stand (9-13)
Irish Wolf (9-11)
Mr Ed (9-01)

David Pipe
Celestial Gold (11-10)
Madison Du Berlais (11-06)
Vodka Bleu (10-13)
Dom D’Orgeval (10-11)
Joaaci (10-10)
Over The Creek (10-07)
Comply Or Die (10-06)
Milan Deux Mille (10-06)
Whispered Secret (10-00)
Not Left Yet (9-10)
Sixo (9-05)

Paul Nicholls
Mr Pointment (11-08)
Turko (11-07)
Opera Mundi (11-03)
Thisthatandtother (11-02)
Cornish Sett (10-07)
Royal Auclair (10-07)
Le Duc (10-02)
Sweet Diversion (9-13)

Nigel Twiston-Davies (1998 Earth Summit, 2002 Bindaree)
Knowhere (11-08)
Ollie Magern (11-08)
Fundamentalist (11-01)
Naunton Brook (10-07)
Patman Du Charmil (10-05)
Ardaghey (10-04)
Baron Windrush (10-04)
Irish Raptor (10-01)

Willie Mullins IRE (2005 Hedgehunter)
Hedgehunter (11-09)
Rule Supreme (11-05)
Snowy Morning (10-12)
Alexander Taipan (10-11)
Homer Wells (10-05)
Livingstonebramble (10-02)
Bothar Na (9-12)

Philip Hobbs
Monkerhostin (11-07)
Dream Alliance (11-01)
Parsons Legacy (10-07)
Boychuk (10-04)
Tom Sayers (10-02)
Captain Corelli (10-01)

Tony Martin IRE
Patsy Hall (10-07)
Royal County Star (10-07)
Dun Doire (10-04)
Newbay Prop (10-01)
Wonderkid (8-11)

Ferdy Murphy
Nine De Sivola (10-08)
Joes Edge (10-04)
You’re Special (9-13)
Leading Man (9-12)
Noir Et Vert (9-12)

Jonjo O’Neill
Butler’s Cabin (11-00)
Bob Hall (10-08)
Drombeag (10-03)
Risk Accessor (10-01)
Innox (9-13)

Tom Taaffe IRE
Slim Pickings (11-00)
Tumbling Dice (10-07)
In The High Grass (10-03)
Merdeka (10-02)
Glenfinn Captain (10-00)

Venetia Williams
Mon Mome (10-08)
Nirvana Du Bourg (10-02)
Flintoff (9-11)
Pass Me By (9-10)
The Outlier (9-07)

Howard Johnson
Bewleys Berry (10-11)
Backbeat (10-06)
Theatre Knight (10-02)
Royal Rosa (9-07)

Francois Doumen FR
L’Ami (10-12)
Kelami (10-06)
Nitrat (9-12)

Tom George
Kilbeggan Blade (10-04)
Ballyfoy (9-13)
Toulouse-Lautrec (8-12)

Donald McCain Jnr
Cloudy Lane (10-08)
Idle Talk (10-06)
Bannister Lane (10-00)

Evan Williams
Flying Enterprise (9-11)
Maletton (9-07)
McEvoy (9-03)

Michael Hourigan IRE
Beef Or Salmon (11-12)
Hi Cloy (11-09)

Dessie Hughes IRE
Black Apalachi (10-05)
Sea Diva (9-09)

Mouse Morris IRE
Baily Breeze (10-08)
Hear The Echo (10-01)

Tom Mullins IRE
Chelsea Harbour (10-13)
Secretofshambhala (8-11)

Michael Scudamore
Azulejo (9-11)
Majadal (10-00)

Charlie Swan IRE
Foreman (11-06)
Oodachee (9-12)

Colin Tizzard
Joe Lively (11-04)
Bob Bob Bobbin (10-01)

Sean Aherne IRE
Beantown (9-05)

Kim Bailey (1990 Mr Frisk)
Longshanks (10-03)

Paul Blockley
Model Son (9-05)

Kahlil Burke
Gardasee (NQ)

Richard Chotard FR
Fustrien Du Paon (9-12)

Francois Cottin FR
Juful Tennis (9-00)

Henry Daly
Billyvoddan (11-04)

Victor Dartnell
Sir Rembrandt (10-10)

Henry De Bromhead IRE
Oscar India (9-08)

Ben De Haan
Bengo (8-09)

Eoin Doyle IRE
No Full (10-09)

Don Forster
Ossmoses (10-03)

Jim Goldie
Lampion Du Bost (10-00)

Richard Guest
Our Armageddon (9-10)

Jessica Harrington IRE
Knight Legend (11-04)

Nigel Hawke
Loulou Nivernais (10-01)

Ron Hodges
Preacher Boy (9-12)

Pat Hughes IRE
Point Barrow (10-10)

Malcolm Jefferson
Roman Ark (10-11)

Alan King
D’Argent (10-09)

Len Lungo
Brooklyn Breeze (9-10)

Niall Madden IRE
Ursumman (10-05)

Charlie Mann
Nadover (10-06)

Arthur Moore IRE
King Johns Castle (10-08)

John Murphy IRE
Final Act (9-01)

Paul Murphy
Contraband (10-11)

Dr Richard Newland
Burntoakboy (9-09)

Michael O’Brien IRE
Forget The Past (11-07)

Richard Phillips
Pak Jack (10-02)

Brendan Powell
Bosham Mill (9-02)

John Quinn
Character Building (10-05)

Keith Reveley
Ungaro (11-03)

Nicky Richards
Turpin Green (11-10)

Craig Roberts
Victory Gunner (9-02)

Christy Roche IRE
Cool Running (10-03)

Philip Rothwell IRE
Native Jack (9-09)

Oliver Sherwood
Eric’s Charm (10-01)

Sue Smith
St Matthew (9-11)

John Spearing
Simon (11-04)

Alison Thorpe
Henry’s Pride (8-12)

Martin Todhunter
Silver Jack (9-02)

John Weymes
Another Rum (9-03)

Nick Williams
Philson Run (10-05)

Lisa Williamson
Cornish Rebel (10-09)

J P McManus (11):
Foreman (11-06)
Butler’s Cabin (11-00)
L’Ami (10-12)
King Johns Castle (10-08)
Bob Hall (10-08)
Ursumman (10-05)
Drombeag (10-03)
Cool Running (10-03)
Risk Accessor (10-01)
Glenfinn Captain (10-00)
Innox (9-13)

Trevor Hemmings (2005 Hedgehunter) (6):
Turpin Green (11-10)
Hedgehunter (11-09)
Billyvoddan (11-04)
Cloudy Lane (10-08)
Idle Talk (10-06)
Nirvana du Bourg (10-02)

David Johnson (6):
Celestial Gold (11-10)
Vodka Bleu (10-13)
Joaaci (10-10)
Over The Creek (10-07)
Comply Or Die (10-06)
Not Left Yet (9-10)

Andrea & Graham Wylie (4):
Bewleys Berry (10-11)
Backbeat (10-06)
Theatre Knight (10-02)
Royal Rosa (9-07)


The long-time market leader with totesport is the well-supported Paul Nicholls-trained Mr Pointment. The lightly-raced nine-year-old headed the betting at 14/1 after securing a game victory in the totesport.com Becher Chase over the big Aintree fences on November 25, but those odds soon shortened to 12/1.

Popular Irish owner JP McManus is still chasing success in the world’s most famous steeplechase and his Butler’s Cabin was a 14/1 equal second choice of three prior to the publication of the weights. The eight-year-old scored at the Cheltenham Festival last season and added a famous triumph in the Irish Grand National at Fairyhouse in April.

Racing Post Chase winner Simon and the Willie Mullins-trained Snowy Morning are the other 14/1 pre-weights shots with totesport. The latter, runner-up in the Grade One Royal & SunAlliance Chase last term has had two starts over hurdles this season.

The Howard Johnson-trained Bewleys Berry was a length runner-up to Mr Pointment in the totesport.com Becher Chase and has been steady in the list at 16/1, while 2007 John Smith’s Grand National third Slim Pickings has been static at 20/1.

A swathe of horses have been available at 25/1 including the Peter Bowen-trained McKelvey who was a fast-finishing runner-up to Silver Birch in last season’s main event. Others on offer at the price include Grade Two Letheby & Christopher Chase winner Knowhere and Cloudy Lane, trained by Donald McCain jnr, son of Aintree legend Ginger “Red Rum” McCain.

There has been support for shrewd Irish handler Tony Martin’s trio. Paddy Power Chase winner Newbay Prop and Troytown Handicap Chase victor Royal County Star both shortened to 25/1 in January. Dun Doire, who has tightened from 40/1 to 33/1 in the past two months, was pulled up before four out in last year’s renewal.

Damian Walker, Racecourse PR Manager at totesport, said today: “Mr Pointment has been very popular since his win in the totesport.com Becher Chase. Punters jumped on the back of the fact that Paul Nicholls said after the race that the horse could be his number one John Smith’s Grand National hope and he has been extremely well-backed.

“With the performance of the Nicholls stable this season, he’s definitely the horse we’ve seen the most money for up to now. At this stage, Mr Pointment wouldn’t be a good result for us or any other bookmakers. Punters are almost backing Nicholls blind, especially at the big Saturday meetings. He had another three winners at Sandown on Saturday and it’s costing us money.

“Our odds compilers will compare Phil Smith’s handicap against the handicap we have produced and if we feel he has been lenient with a horse, then we might trim its price. Likewise, if a horse seems to have a bit too much weight we might ease that out. There are always one or two horses that have a few pounds less than we thought they would get, so we’ll change the prices accordingly.”

For old articles (from 1st March 2000) go to the Newslink Archive

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