Welsh Grand National Preview: Tips, Betting Offers and Odds – 2:50 at Chepstow, 27th December 2018
Read on for the best odds, offers and betting tips on offer for the 2018 Welsh Grand National, the big race at Chepstow – a fine feast of excitement as you’re still devouring the leftover turkey!
The class in this race doesn’t compete with the King George on Boxing Day but even so, this is a thrilling race.
Welsh Grand National Betting Tips
Odds correct at the time of writing and are subject to change.
- Tips coming soon…
Welsh Grand National Betting Offers
We’ll list enhanced odds and other Welsh National offers here in due course.
- The best Racing Free Bets will be listed here soon.
Welsh Grand National 2018 Ante Post Tips and Race Preview
The festive period is certainly a good time to be a racing fan. Hot on the heels of the mammoth Boxing Day offering, we have one of the real winter highlights taking place on the 27the December. Everyone loves a National, and Chepstow delivers a late Christmas present this year as it lays on the excellent Coral Welsh Grand National. Held over a trip of 3m5½f, and more often than not run on ground which takes some getting through, this is a true marathon affair. Here we take a look at a few of the main contenders aiming to slog it out in pursuit of the prize in 2018.
Tizzard’s Tennessee The Right Fit?
Colin Tizzard famously sent out subsequent Gold Cup hero, Native River, to land this in 2016, and looks set to be responsible for the favourite this year in the form of his recent Ladbrokes Trophy champ, Sizing Tennessee. This ten year old didn’t just win the race formerly known as the Hennessey Gold Cup, he turned it into a bit of a procession in the end when streaking ten lengths clear coming up the straight. Getting in here under just a 4lb penalty, he is clearly well in on the book and boasts every chance if taking to the track on what will be his first visit to Chepstow. Sizing Tennessee is a 8/1 shot with Bet365.
Blue Is The Colour As Elliott Strikes?
Irish powerhouse Gordon Elliott struck gold in the biggest National of them all last season with Tiger Roll, but is yet to win this prize. Elliott looks set to give it a good go this year, with six entries at the time of writing. The likes of Rogue Angel, Out Sam and in particular, Monbeg Notorious, all look interesting, but his best chance may well be the eleven year old, Folsom Blue. Only 3lbs higher than when beaten only 1¾l in the Irish Grand National last season, the bigger the test the better for this one, and he certainly won’t be inconvenienced should the rains arrive. Three miles on good ground around Haydock was always likely to be too sharp for him on his recent return, but that effort will at least have served to blow away any cobwebs ahead of this. At 12/1 with Betfair we see him proving a popular each way option.
Raz To Raise The Roof Again?
He may be 13 years old now, but a proven ability to handle the demands of this race counts for plenty, and as such it may prove unwise to dismiss the claims of the defending champion in this race; Gavin Cromwell’s grand old warrior, Raz De Maree. The rain must come by the bucketload if this one is to prevail again, but that is by no means impossible at this time of year. Whilst he has shown nothing in his three runs so far this season, his entire campaign will likely be centred around this race, and his trainer can be trusted to have him spot on the day. Only 2lbs higher than when coming home 6ls to the good last year, he could make the 25/1 currently available with Ladbrokes look pretty big on the day.
Ibis To Swoop For Nicholls?
Paul Nicholls has landed this prize twice in the past, with the most recent of those wins coming in 2005 though, the multiple Champion Trainer may well be feeling that another victory is a little overdue. In Ibis Du Rheu, Nicholls may have just the horse to break that drought. This one has always looked a horse with a fair bit of ability, but numerous niggling issues have held him back in his career to date. Reportedly better than ever now though, and still only seven years old, it’s by no means too late for him to make his presence felt. An excellent win at Cheltenham last time out – on what was his first run in over 200 days – should have him spot on for this and he looks set to go well. Having often looked a dour stayer, this test may also suit. He can be backed at 20/1 with BetVictor.
- 2017 – (ran in Jan 2018 due to postponement) Raz De Maree – jockey James Bowen, trainer Gavin Cromwell
- 2016 – Native River – jockey Richard Johnson, trainer Colin Tizzard
- 2015 (ran in Jan 2016 due to postponement) – Mountainous – jockey Jamie Moore, trainer Kerry Lee
- 2014 – Emperor’s Choice – jockey Aiden Coleman, trainer Venetia Williams
- 2013 – Mountainous – jockey Paul Moloney, trainer Richard Lee
- 2012 – Monbeg Dude – jockey Paul Carberry, trainer Michael Scudamore
- 2011 – Le Beau Bai – jockey Charlie Poste, trainer Richard Lee
- 2010 – Synchronised – jockey Tony McCoy, trainer Jonjo O’Neill
- 2009 – Dream Alliance – jockey Tom O’Brien, trainer Philip Hobbs
- 2008 – Notre Pere – jockey Andrew Lynch, trainer Jim Dreaper
- 2007 – Miko de Beauchene – jockey Andrew Thornton, trainer Robert Alner
- 2006 – Halcon Genelardais – jockey Wayne Hutchinson, trainer Alan King
- 2005 – L’Aventure – jockey Leighton Aspell, trainer Paul Nicholls
The Welsh Grand National is a Grade 3 National Hunt chase for horse aged four years and above. It is run at Chepstow race course each year and has been since 1949 when the course was switched from Caerleon. Prior to Caerleon, the race had been held at Ely Racecourse in Cardiff since its inauguration in 1895. The race was suspended during the years of 1939 and 1948 due to the War. In total there are 22 fences for the competitors to overcome across its three miles and five and a half furlong distance.
The date of the race has been progressively moved earlier on in the racing calendar in an attempt to attract better horses, despite the threat of increasingly worse weather. It was moved back from Easter Tuesday, to February in 1969 and then to its current date in 1979.
The class of runners did subsequently improve, making it an informative contest for how future events, such as the Grand National and the Cheltenham Gold Cup, were to play out. The most recent example of horses winning this one and then continuing on to win one of these two others are Bindaree, Silver Birch and Synchronised. Bindaree, winner here in 2003, and Silver Birch, winner in this one in the following year, went on to win the Aintree Grand National also. Synchronised, victorious here in 2010, went on to win the Cheltenham Gold Cup in 2012.
Over the past decade there have been few horses, jockeys or trainers alike to seriously stamp their authority on this race, largely due to the open nature of the Welsh National. The only reoccurring name on the previous winners list in the past 10 years is trainer Richard Lee. Lee managed victory in 2011 and 2013, but even then this was with different horses and different jockeys.
This trend perhaps shows the difficulty of this particular race and the unpredictability of it, which of course makes the Welsh National almost as tough a betting proposition as its English equivalent. That said, we did see the dominance of two trainers in the 1980s and early 1990s. Jenny Pitman and Martin Pipe trained eight of the 12 winning horses between the years 1982 and 1993.
Over this period however, the trend of lots of different winning horses continued. The only horse to actually earn repeat victories in this timewas Martin Pipe’s Bonanza Boy in 1988 and 1989. These two victories made this Pipe trained horse the first ever horse to win this race in consecutive years and he remains the only one to have done so still to this day.
Jockey Peter Scudamore enjoyed much success in the late 1980s amassing a total of three wins in five years, two in the saddle of Bonanza Boy, making him one of the most successful jockeys in the history of the Welsh National.
The arrival of the Welsh National means that the year is almost at a close. That means that the Cheltenham Festival is just months away. Now then, THAT means you really should check out our Cheltenham Festival offers post!