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Grand National Betting Tactics: #1 Give me a run for my money

by Aidan Elder | April 4, 2013


Picking the horse you want to back for the Grand National is difficult. Some people like to do the painstaking hours of research and analysis while others just rock up, throw a dart at the racecard and hope for the best. No matter what tactic you choose, there’s no guarantee of success. So in honour of the various methods people use, here’s our breakdown of the ways to pick a Grand National horse. Here’s part one of a five part series that will hopefully get you closer to landing a winner.

#1 I just want a run for my money

Also known as ‘for the love of God, please stay on your feet for a few fences at least’. Falling at the first fence is a major fear for a lot of people. Not quite as bad as the deep-rooted primal fear of getting cancer, a nuclear apocalypse or the Spice Girls releasing another album, but it’s not far off.

Having your horse fall at the first is an absolute nightmare. And to make matters worse, it’s something your friends will most likely slag you remorselessly for – as if it was your fault the horse got a bit carried away and suddenly thought he was ET on that bike.

Realistically, no-one expects to pick the winner in the Grand National, but getting a run for your money and the excuse to shout obscenities at the TV is enjoyable compensation. With that in mind, we’ve had a look at the horses running in this year’s race who’ve had a crack at the Grand National before, to see if we can rely on any of them to stay on their feet long enough to give us the deluded feeling we might actually win.

PU = Pulled up, F = Fell, UR = Unseated rider, BD = Brought down, Any number = finishing position

PU = Pulled up, F = Fell, UR = Unseated rider, BD = Brought down, Any number = finishing position

It looks like there are a few old reliable who have the happy knack of getting around. In his three bites at the Grand National cherry, Big Fella Thanks has been a steady option, picking up commendable ‘close but no cigar finishes’ of seventh, fourth and sixth. 2011 winner, Ballabriggs gave a good account of himself when trying to defend his title last year and his sixth in that race suggests he’s mastered the intricacies of the organised bedlam.

On the other end of the spectrum, you might want to avoid Becauseicouldntsee. He’s shown about as much aptitude for the Grand National as N-Dubz have for making good music. If you backed him previously and then found you couldn’t see him, it’s because he has got no further than the second and eighth fences in his two Grand National attempts. ‘Best avoided’ is the polite way to put it. ‘Future Tesco burger’ is the less polite way.



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