Day Two Aintree Grand National Meeting Preview

Aintree - April 08 2021
Aintree 12:45
2
Tom Cannon

Edwardstone

J:
 
Tom Cannon
T:
 
Alan King
Age: 7
Weight: 11-11
OR: 149
Days: 21

The first race of the second day at Aintree sees the Grade Three Pertemps Network Handicap Hurdle over 2m4f and with a huge field set to be involved we have two each way punts.

The first is the reliable Edwardstone for Alan King that has been knocking on the door in handicap events this season and is due to land a big one.

The gelding finished second to Chantry House in a bumper two seasons ago and was then sent over hurdles and was unbeaten on his first two starts winning at Wincanton on debut seeing off Grade One winner Fiddlerontheroof.

He backed that up at Aintree when seeing off Harry Senior that since went on to land a Grade Two at Cheltenham, but then ran below par in a four runner Grade Two at Haydock to finish second.

He then stepped up to the Supreme Novices' Hurdle and finished a fair sixth of the 15 runners, being beaten by better horses on the day but still running to a high level.

Back again for this season he was pitched straight into the deep end finishing fifth in the Grade Three Greatwood Handicap Hurdle at Cheltenham.

After the chase debut did not work out when last seen, King sent him back over hurdles and it was the right move when landing a Handicap Hurdle with ease at Market Rasen.

He used that as a prep run to then head to Newbury for the Betfair Hurdle and he managed to stay on well to grab third behind Soaring Glory.

Still in fine spirits, last time out he went to the Cheltenham festival and was again staying on well in the finish to grab fifth in the big fielded County Hurdle.

Although now fairly high in the weights he has some of the best form on offer and the step up to 2m4f is sure to suit.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
10/02/24NBY16.5Hy11-81
13/01/24KEM20.5GS11-84
09/12/23SAN15.5Hy11-102
19/11/23CHL16Sft11-102
15/03/23CHL16Sft11-105
Aintree - April 08 2021
Aintree 12:45
10
Nico de Boinville

Mister Coffey

J:
 
Nico de Boinville
T:
 
Nicky Henderson
Age: 6
Weight: 10-13
OR: 137
Days: 47

At a slightly bigger price, but still holding a superb frame chance is the interesting Mister Coffey for Nicky Henderson who should have no excuses today.

The six year old gelding was thought very highly of last term having previously won a bumper and then sent over hurdles and looking a potential runner in the Supreme Novices' Hurdle.

In December 2019 he won a 17 runner introductory hurdle at Newbury beating smart horses like On To Victory and Shakem Up'Arry.

He was then sent to Huntingdon where it looked like he would have another routine win but instead did not run to form and finished second in a weak event.

He was put away for the season after that, but this term has come back and looks to have matured massively, winning on seasonal debut over course and distance at Sandown in a handicap hurdle.

Mister Coffey headed back over the same course and distance next time out for the Listed Handicap Hurdle and although up 10lb and on heavy ground he still ran a nice race to finish third, with the second since franking the form.

The gelding on a mark of 138 went into the Betfair Hurdle last time out and was a fair seventh of 23 and if improving for that run has a big chance in this one off 1lb lower.

Has a huge amount of potential and is yet to fulfil it and at 10/1 is worth taking a chance on.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
10/02/24NBY23.5Hy11-103
27/01/24DON24Gd11-86
16/12/23DON24GS11-92
18/11/23CHL24.5Sft11-44
15/04/23AIN34.5GS10-48
Aintree - April 08 2021
Aintree 13:20
10
Harry Cobden

Houx Gris

J:
 
Harry Cobden
T:
 
Paul Nicholls
Age: 4
Weight: 10-12
OR: 130
Days: 24

The first Grade One event of the day is the Top Novices' Hurdle over two miles and at a generous price Houx Gris for Paul Nicholls looks to be the value.

The four year old ran in two bumpers in the middle of 2020 in France, winning on debut and then finishing second on his final start before being moved over hurdles.

He made his hurdles debut at Auteuil in September and finished a good third over 2m2f in soft conditions and then next time out over a similar trip he got off the mark.

He was bought and given to Nicholls, making his debut in January at Chepstow in the Grade One Finale Juvenile Hurdle and finishing a well beaten third behind Adagio and Nassalam.

That form does not look all that strong with the second and fourth since getting beat, but it allowed him to be given a very nice mark of 128 for the Boodles at Prestbury Park.

Coming to last he looked to have a huge chance, but in the end could only manage fourth, but he still gave a good showing having also been heavily backed before the off.

He stays at two miles for this event and is being given his chance in pattern company and if what his trainer says is true, the way he works at home should see him go close in this at 12/1.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
09/04/21AIN16.5GS10-12UR
16/03/21CHL16.5GS10-114
09/01/21CHP16Sft11-03
22/10/20AUT17.5Hy10-101
26/09/20AUT18VSft10-63
Aintree - April 08 2021
Aintree 13:50
5
Harry Skelton

Shan Blue

J:
 
Harry Skelton
T:
 
Dan Skelton
Age: 7
Weight: 11-4
OR: 150
Days: 22

Next up is the Grade One Mildmay Novices' Chase over 3m1f and we are siding with the Dan Skelton trained Shan Blue to bounce back to form.

Having been a fair hurdler, this season he has taken his form to the next level by making his chase debut at Wetherby in October over 2m4f and winning by 14 lengths.

Off the back of that he went back to Wetherby and was stepped up to three miles for the first time in his career and he went on again to win by 16 lengths.

He showed clear stamina that day and his biggest asset is how well he jumps a fence, which made the Skelton's happy enough to send him to Kempton for the Grade On Kauto Star Novices' Chase.

He took on some nice horses including The Big Breakaway and blew them away in the final stages, jumping his rivals into submission.

Last time out he was pitched back into Grade One company at Sandown in the Scilly Isles Chase and although jumping well was outstayed by Sporting John.

Shan Blue last time out went to the Cheltenham festival in the Marsh Novices' Chase and although jumping well to start with and going from the front he was easily passed and outclassed at the shorter trip, by some in this field.

The longer trip of Friday will help him but he does need to bounce back to his best.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
17/02/24ASC24GS11-53
23/12/23ASC19Gd11-83
09/12/23CHP23.5Hy11-7PU
18/11/23CHL24Sft11-7PU
26/12/22WET24GS11-3PU
Aintree - April 08 2021
Aintree 14:25
5
Sam Twiston-Davies

Master Tommytucker

J:
 
Sam Twiston-Davies
T:
 
Paul Nicholls
Age: 10
Weight: 11-7
OR: 160
Days: 48

The feature Grade One on day two is the 2m4f Melling Chase and it sees a very familiar field of horses take to post and we believe that Master Tommytucker for Paul Nicholls is the value.

Having been a horse with bundles of potential but never really showing it, this term he seems to have turned over a new leaf and his jumping has improved massively.

Although winning on his seasonal debut last term, he then went on to fall twice in a row, with many thinking his potential was short lived.

However, he made his return this season at Newton Abbott and jumped much better to finish a good second behind Al Dancer.

From there he has really kicked on landing back to back races with superb jumping displays, especially two starts ago at Haydock when winning a good Graduation Chase by 15 lengths.

Nicholls decided to send him to Cheltenham in the Caspian Caviar Gold Cup and off top weight was underwhelming, finishing seventh.

He put things right last time out when winning the Grade Two Silviniaco Conti Chase at Kempton, albeit the favourite Imperial Aura falling at the first.

Last time out he went to Ascot seeking Grade One glory in the Ascot Chase but he was out battled by Dashel Drasher and he will need to reverse that form.

However, he looks to have been progressive this term and if jumping well could be tough to beat.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
05/12/21HUN20Gd11-84
20/11/21ASC21Gd11-82
30/10/21WET24GS11-05
09/04/21AIN20GS11-76
20/02/21ASC21Sft11-72
Aintree - April 08 2021
Aintree 15:05
4
Daryl Jacob

Caribean Boy

J:
 
Daryl Jacob
T:
 
Nicky Henderson
Age: 7
Weight: 11-7
OR: 152
Days: 22

The prestigious Grade Three Topham Handicap Chase over the National fences sees a big field of handicapping horses head to post and with that n mind we have picked out two at prices.

The first is the Nicky Henderson trained Caribean Boy for owners Simon Munir and Isaac Souede and he could just be the class angle in the event.

The seven year old has been very lightly raced over the years, only having three starts for the and performing to a high standard in all of them, with one place and two wins.

He made his chase debut in January of this year and finished a good third behind some nice types and then backed that up a month later when getting off the mark at Haydock.

He was first seen again in November, shrewdly being put into a novices chase by his trainer and going on to beat Fiddlerontheroof to land the Grade Two event.

He dropped out of that company after that run at Ascot and was a poor third of three runners, with the heavy ground going against him.

The gelding then went to Sandown, again on heavy ground and struggled in a decent Handicap Chase, but the key to this horse is quick ground.

The son of Myboycharlie got better ground last time out in the Paddy Power Plate at Cheltenham and finished a fair seventh behind The Shunter.

Getting his ground and having had an away day over the fences, should see him go close.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
06/05/23UTT24GS12-07
19/04/23CHL20.5Gd11-121
28/01/23CHL20.5Sft11-7PU
03/12/22CHP23.5GS11-45
19/02/22ASC24Sft11-4PU
Aintree - April 08 2021
Aintree 15:05
7
Kielan Woods

Huntsman Son

J:
 
Kielan Woods
T:
 
Alex Hales
Age: 11
Weight: 11-0
OR: 145
Days: 22

At a huge price of 20/1 in the race , Huntsman Son for trainer Alex Hales has a big chance of entering the frame.

Having been off the track for over a year, the 11 year old made his return to the track this season on October and landed a Listed chase event ahead of Two For Gold, who has since franked the form.

He then headed to Cheltenham in December for the Grade Three Caspian Caviar Gold Cup and he was pulled up with soft going not suiting him at all.

Given some time off, he returned at the Cheltenham festival last month and finished a good sixth in the Paddy Power Plate behind the likes of The Shunter and Farclas.

He is obviously much better suited going left handed and getting his better ground on Friday makes him a big player.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
24/10/21AIN20Gd10-8PU
05/05/21NAB21Gd11-62
09/04/21AIN21GS11-0UR
18/03/21CHL20.5GS11-56
12/12/20CHL20.5Sft11-3PU
Aintree - April 08 2021
Aintree 15:40
2
NON-RUNNER

Alaphilippe

J:
 
NON-RUNNER
T:
 
Fergal O'Brien
Age: 7
Weight: 11-4
OR: 143
Days: 21

The penultimate race of the afternoon sees the last Grade One of the day with the big fielded Doom Bar Sefton Novices' Hurdle over three miles.

Our first selection in the race is the Fergal O'Brien trained Alaphillipe who was bought to England having won an Irish point to point and has this season looked a stout stayer.

Beating Pats Fancy in a bumper, he was swiftly moved up to hurdles and further in trip. Easily winning his maiden he also had no problems in defying a penalty to notch a brace of 2m4f wins. 

Just failing to shoulder a double penalty, he ran on well and suggested that a longer trip wouldn’t be too taxing. 

Moved up to three miles for the Grade Two Albert Bartlett trial at Haydock, the seven year old absolutely bolted up by 14 lengths.

Looking an assured stayer with a group win to his name he lined up in the Albert Bartlett last month and ran a fair race to finish fifth of the 16 runners.

This looks an easier event than that and if going down to a stamina test he should be in the mix.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
21/01/24LIN23Sft11-5UR
13/12/23LEI22.5Hy11-43
18/11/23CHL24.5Sft11-4PU
26/10/23CRL20Sft11-22
17/03/22CHL24Sft10-82
Aintree - April 08 2021
Aintree 15:40
3
James Bowen

Bothwell Bridge

J:
 
James Bowen
T:
 
Nicky Henderson
Age: 6
Weight: 11-4
OR: 131
Days: 40

At a bigger price but a very interesting runner is the Nicky Henderson trained Bothwell Bridge who has done very little wrong this term.

The six year old made two bumper appearances last season but was unfortunate to bump into a couple of smart sorts, coming second to Third Time Lucki and then was second again to the impressive Boothill on his next start. 

Put away until this season he came back as a hurdler. Moved up in trip he immediately shed his maiden tag and scored a win at Warwick at short odds.

Looking to follow up with his penalty he ran at Newbury in a hot contest featuring Es Perfecto and eventual Challow Hurdle winner Bravemansgame, only managing third. 

Given another small break he returned in late February. Moved up to 3 miles and 1.5 furlongs suited him more and he cantered home a runaway winner. 

He has some smart form in the books, he looks very unexposed, was Impressive on debut, beaten by a smart horse over 2m4f on his second start.

He has a lot going in his favour.

Aintree - April 08 2021
Aintree 16:15
17
Lewis Stones

Copperless

J:
 
Lewis Stones
T:
 
Olly Murphy
Age: 6
Weight: 10-2
OR: 123
Days: 17

The final event on Friday is the Class 2 Handicap Hurdle over 2 1/2 furlong and Copperless for Olly Murphy looks the one to side with if running to form.

The six year old is nicely weighted in the field and with the added bonus of a handy 7lb claimer on board he looks to be extremely light.

Having ran in one bumper on the all weather in 2019, he stepped over hurdles this term and has been superb in all of his runs.

He made his seasonal debut at Perth in September and finished a good second behind Stoner's Choice for Fergal O'Brien who has franked the form on numerous occasions this term.

Copperless has gone unbeaten on both his runs since then, landing a maiden hurdle over this trip at Market Rasen and then going to Taunton in March and doing the same.

He comes to Aintree seeking a hat-trick and he has plenty in his favour.

DateCourseDistanceTypeWeightPosition
08/05/21HAY15.5Sft10-41
09/04/21AIN16.5GS9-9F
23/03/21TAU16.5Gd11-121
17/10/20MAR16.5Gd10-121
24/09/20PER16GS10-122