Scottish Grand National Preview: Tips, Betting Offers and Odds, Ayr, 21 April 2018
Approaching the tail end of April and the latest editions of the English Grand National and Irish Grand National are now firmly in the record books. We do still have the staying and jumping spectacular of the Scottish version of the race to look forward to though, and here we take a look at the best odds and betting offers available and provide our betting tips for the race.
A Grade 3 National Hunt Steeplechase run over a trip of 4m 110yards, the contest is open to runners aged five and older. First run in 1858, and here at Ayr since 1966, the race now offers £215,000 in total prize money.
Scottish National Tips 2018
- Vicente to win at 10/1 with Betfair
- Captain Redbeard each way at 33/1 with Bet365
(odds correct at time of publication, subject to change)
Scottish National Betting Offers
- RACEBETS BET £10 ON SCOTTISH GRAND NATIONAL, GET £10 FREE BET – NEW CUSTOMERS. 18+, min stake £/€10, max stake £/€10, min deposit £/€10, new depositing accounts only, 2 x £5 Free Bets to be used at Stratford on 22/04. Stake not returned, UK&IE customers only, offer valid until 21/04 17.00 BST, standard T&C’s apply. +18. BeGambleAware.org
- WILLIAM HILL BET £10 GET £30 IN FREE BETS – New William Hill online customers only. Min. unit stake of £10/€10 at odds of 1/2 or greater. Only the “win” part from EW bets will count. Free bet terms, payment method & country restrictions apply. Free bets credited as 3 x £10/€10. Free bet stakes are not returned as part of the settlement of successful free bets. All Free Bets must be wagered within 30 days.
- LADBROKES £50 FREE BET OFFER – 18+. New customers only. Promo code ‘F50’ required. Certain deposit methods excluded. Min £/€5 on win or each-way bet excluding Tote or pools = match max £/€50 free bet. Min odds 1/2 (1.5). Bet must be made within 14 days. Free bet valid for 4 days. Free bet stake not returned. Single bets only. Free bet cannot be used on certain markets. T&Cs apply.
- CORAL BET £5, GET £20 IN FREE BETS – 18+. UK+IRE only. Min first bet £5 at odds 1/2 or more. Tote and Pool excluded. Must be placed within 14 days of account reg. £20 credited as 4 x £5 free bets. Not valid with Cash Out. Free bet valid for 4 days. Free bet stake not returned. T&Cs apply.
- Other offers coming soon…until then check out all of our racing free bets
Betting Tips and Race Preview 2018
One week after Tiger Roll just about held on to win the Grand National at Aintree it’s time for racing fans to turn their attention north of the border. The Scottish Grand National is every bit as demanding in terms of stamina and jumping as the Aintree spectacular. Run over four miles, 100 yards, there are 27 fences to be jumped and while the field is a little smaller than last week’s race, 30 horses are set to go to post at Ayr.
Vicente to Get Back to His Best On Good Ground
The weather has finally turned across Britain. A cold, wet winter played havoc with racecourses all over the country but now that the sun is out and it’s mainly dry, good ground is returning. While some horses love nothing more than a real stamina-sapping run on boggy conditions, other long distance chasers prefer it when the pace is a little faster and the ground a little firmer. That’s certainly the case for Vicente who comes to life at this time of year.
Paul Nicholls’ charge has won both of the last two renewals of the Scottish Grand National and the weather in the Ayr area has seen punters flooding in to back him for an incredible treble. The going at Ayr remains officially good to soft but it’s getting closer to good all the time and the more conditions dry out, the better Vicente’s chances are.
It’s been a disappointing season thus far for Vicente. After coming very close to winning on his reappearance at Cheltenham in November, the nine-year-old failed to complete either of his last two assignments. However, both of those races were on heavy ground and in truth, Vicente never really stood a chance. Those failures should actually ensure he is fresher than many of his opponents.
Vicente, a 10/1 shot with Betfair, will need his best stuff but he finds it with such regularity at Ayr that he remains the one the rest have to beat.
Mysteree Can Oblige at a Healthy Price
Mysteree hasn’t made an appearance at Ayr since 2014 which is a little surprising given that he finished third and first on his two appearances four years ago. Both of those results came on heavy ground earlier on in the year but Mysteree has a fair amount of good form on good to soft ground as well.
The first of his two appearances this season came at Chepstow where he was pulled up in the Welsh Grand National. He was much better next time out at Haydock, battling hard in the closing stages to claim third on heavy ground. That performance gave connections hope that he would get four miles and even longer providing he got decent ground.
Michael Scudamore has spoken before about his hope of turning Mysteree into a Grand National Horse. He didn’t run at Aintree but can make up for that disappointment by claiming at least a place at Ayr where he is available at big odds of 33/1 with Bet365 (as of 19th April 2018).
Scottish Grand National Previous Winners
- 2017 – Vicente – jockey Sam Twiston-Davies, trainer Paul Nicholls
- 2016 – Vicente – jockey Sam Twiston-Davies, trainer Paul Nicholls
- 2015 – Wayward Prince – jockey Robbie Dunne, trainer Hillary Parrott
- 2014 – Al Co – jockey Jamie Moore, trainer Peter Bowen
- 2013 – Godsmejudge – jockey Wayne Hutchinson, trainer Alan King
- 2012 – Merigo – jockey Timmy Murphy, trainer Andrew Parker
- 2011 – Beshabar – jockey Paddy Brennan , trainer Tim Vaughan
- 2010 – Merigo – jockey Timmy Murphy, trainer Andrew Parker
- 2009 – Hello Bud – jockey Paddy Brennan, trainer Nigel Twiston-Davies
- 2008 – Iris de Balme – jockey Mr Charlie Huxley, trainer Sean Curran
- 2007 – Hot Weld – jockey P.J. McDonald, trainer Ferdy Murphy
Race History, Top Trainers and Record Jockeys
The forerunner to this race went by the name of the West Of Scotland Grand National and was held at Houston from 1848 to 1866. The course in those days was only three miles long, with the obstacles consisting mainly of unforgiving stone walls. Switched to Bogside in 1867, the event was given its current title in 1880. The distance was also increased to just shy of four miles during the contests time at Bogside. Switched to its current venue of Ayr in 1966, the current four mile trip was introduced and the conditions of the race have remained unchanged ever since.
There is no doubting the most illustrious name to appear on the roll of honour here. The brilliant and hugely popular triple Aintree Grand National winner, Red Rum, added this event to his impressive career haul in 1974. He remains the only horse to win both the English and Scottish Nationals in the same season.
Others have achieved the famous double during their careers though, including Music Hall, Little Polvier and Earth Summit. Aged just six at the time of his win here in 1994, Earth Summit is the youngest winner of the race in modern times.
From the young to the old, the elder statesmen on our modern list of winners came just one year later in 1995, when the 12 year old Willsford came home in front for Jenny Pitman.
Red Rum carried 11st13lbs do victory for his triumph, but that still puts him 1lb shy of the record 12st shouldered to glory by Playford in 1964.
Charlie Cunningham set the pace amongst the riders in the early years of the contest, with four wins between the years of 1881 and 1889. Since the switch to Ayr, Mark Dwyer’s record of three wins between 1984 and 1996 remains unmatched as of 2016.
Ken Oliver’s four wins at Ayr make him the leading trainer since the event was switched to its current venue. Having also won once at Bogside, Oliver’s five total wins put him in a tie for the all-time lead with Neville Crump.