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Nation Gears Up For Grand National

Bookies and punters alike are gearing up for Saturday’s Grand National as weeks of anticipation finally make way for Aintree to prepare for the biggest day on the UK horseracing calendar.

The Grand National is unquestionably the most prestigious race of the year and the 40-runner, four-and-a-half mile event has long been heralded as one of the greatest sporting spectacles in the world.

Its popularity stems from the races notorious unpredictability and despite the global economic recession putting the pinch on gambling markets, bookmakers will certainly not be short of punters – many of whom are not seasoned horse-backers – putting the odd each-way flutter on a long-shot.

Indeed, in the 100 years that the race has been run, only 11 favourites have won the Grand National and this year’s top pick, My Will at 7/1, is by no means a shoe-in come Saturday. However, while the gruelling 30-fence race is certainly regarded as one of the most open events on the horseracing calendar, it is worth noting that no horse at odds of longer than 33/1 has won in the past 20 years.

Therefore, for each-way value most Grand National backers are currently looking to the likes of Hear The Echo (14/1), Kilbeggan Blade (18/1) and Snowy Morning (28/1) to secure a decent return on their investment, with the latter a particularly good price given it’s lenient weight handicapping.

Whatever the outcome, the Grand National promises to be a truly spectacular event and it is one that horseracing enthusiasts and first-time punters alike simply can’t afford to miss.

Duncan Wilkie
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