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Grand National Betting Tactics #2: I love a Fairytale ending

Forget the Racing Post predictor or getting the pin out. Here's some Hollywood endings to melt your heart or more importantly put some cash in your pocket on Saturday.

by Sean Goff | April 3, 2014

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.

#2 I love a good fairytale ending

Andy Murray wins Wimbledon. Tick. Phil Mickelson wins the Open Championship. Tick. England win the World Cup again in the summer. Eh, we’ll get back to you on that.

Sport is full of fairytale endings and the world’s greatest race – the Aintree Grand National is no different.

Trouble is you only hear about them after the race.

But not this time. The Paddy Power Blog marks your card ahead of a breathless Clare Balding choking back the tears come 4.30pm on Saturday afternoon.

1. Here come the girls : Rebecca Curtis & Teaforthree

Rebecca Curtis 800

Welsh trainer Rebecca Curtis will tick at least two boxes marked “fairytale ending” if Teaforthree delivers in the world’s greatest race on Saturday.

Curtis will become just the third winning female trainer of the Aintree showpiece after Jenny Pitman (Corbiere 1983) and Venetia Williams (Mon Mome, 2009) .

She may have celebrated her 34th birthday on April 1, but she’s no fool. The likely favourite finished third here last season and is the the only runner from last season’s top six to line up again.

2.Teenage Kicks : Tidal Bay

Sam Twiston Davies 840

While most 13-year-olds spend their days sulking and try to look menacing in oversized hoodies, Tidal Bay will become the first teenager to win the Grand National since Sergeant Murphy in 1923. Sam Twiston-Davies’ mount would also become the first top-weight to win it since three-time National hero Red Rum in 1974.

Expect Paul Nicholls’ tough, experienced stayer to arrive later than British Rail as he tries to get his nose-band in front to deliver the ultimate Hollywood ending in the world’s greatest race.

3. Davy’s double : Russell & Lion na Bearnai

Davy Russell Gold Cup 840

Russell’s stock dropped quicker than Channel 4 racing’s viewing figures after he got the boot from Ryanair boss Micheal O’Leary at the turn of the year.

But the former Irish champion bounced back in style at Cheltenham last month. He won the Gold Cup on Lord Windemere and takes the reins aboard 2012 Irish Grand National winner Lion na Bearnai in Saturday’s marathon.

A win for Davy Russell means he’ll have gone from zero to hero in less than a month. David Moyes take note.

4. Royal Approval : Zara Philips & Monbeg Dude

Zara Philips 840

If dodgy jumper Monbeg Dude wins on Saturday expect Zara Philips to make the New Year’s Honours List (again) – and not just because she’s the Queen’s granddaughter.

The 2006 Sports Personality of the Year has been teaching the 2013 Welsh Grand National winner how to jump better ahead of a crack at the big one at Aintree.

Not that it’s all for professional pride. Her husband, former England rugby international Mike Tindall is part-owner of the Michael Scudamore-trained live wire and will trouser a healthy chunk of the £1m booty if the Dude crosses the line in front.

It will also be the closest the Queen has come to a winner since Devon Loch infamous ‘shadow jump’ in 1956.

5. Amatuer dramatics : Sam Waley-Cohen & Long Run

Sam Waley Cohen 840

The class horse in the race, but a bit like Ronnie O’Sullivan, hasn’t being showing too much love for the game lately. The 2011 Cheltenham Gold Cup winner would become the first horse since L’Escargot in 1975 to do the famous double.

While his stomach for the fight must be taken on trust, there’s no doubt – for once – about big-race pilot Sam Waley Cohen’s (SWC) ability around Aintree.

SWC won the Fox Hunters chase on Thursday aboard Warne and has finished second, third and fourth over the National fences – and will never have a better chance to capture the big one. If he does he’ll be he first amateur since Marcus Armytage on Mr Frisk (1990) to do so. And he’ll also become the toast of the Henley Regatta set everywhere.




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