British Raiders Have Huge Chance In Belgian Grand National

Belgian Grand National

Not many people will know that racing even takes place in Belgium but today is one of their biggest race meetings of the season with the Belgian Grand National taking place at Waregem and there are some British raiders looking for European glory.

Jamie Snowden is looking forward to running his leading long distance runner Fact Of The Matter in the historic Grand Steeple-Chase des Flandres today.

The contest which is known as the Belgian Grand National is much like the Aintree feature with huge fences and tricky water jumps that the horses will have to over come.

Snowden's Fact Of The Matter will be ridden by his normal rider Gavin Sheehan who will be having his first ride in Belgium during his career and the horses trainer has said that if he hd the opportunity to ride in the famous race when he was an amateur jockey, he would have jumped at the chance.

(Credit Racing Post) The trainer said: "It might be a bit beyond me now but I would have loved to have had a go at it," said the trainer, who travels over on the morning of the contest. 

He added: "I saw what the water jump looked like in 1920 and luckily they've modified it since then. It should be exciting for Gavin. Races like this are such a buzz for jockeys and it will be an adventure."

Fact Of The Matter has been a smart horse over in England when landing the Cross Country handicap chase at Cheltenham in December and since that day has been primed to go for this contest as part of the 10 race European Cross Country Series.

Last time out over in Britain he was not at his best struggling over the Grand National fences at Aintree in the Topham, finishing a weak 14th but now having plenty of time to prepare for this he has a leading chance to land the €100,000 contest.

"He took well to the fences at Cheltenham and has every chance if he can repeat his performances from the end of last year. It is over three miles and stamina is his forte," Snowden added. 

"My assistant Freddie [Mitchell] went out with him on Sunday morning and it was only a six-hour drive. He travelled over there brilliantly and has had a pop over the bank."