Day Two Aintree Grand National Meeting Preview 2022

James Mackie | @JMackieRacing

Aintree - April 07 2022
Aintree 12:45
Harry Skelton

Langer Dan

J: Harry Skelton
T: Dan Skelton
Age: 6
Weight: 11-1
OR: 137
Days: 21

The first race on the second day of the Grand National meeting is the Grade Three Handicap Hurdle over 2m4f and with 22 runners heading to post we have two selections.

We can't get away from Langer Dan for the Skelton team who was primed for a big run at the Cheltenham festival last time out looking to get better than his second in the Martin Pipe but was unfortunately bought down at the second flight.

Having not been seen for 11 months after his second to Galopin Des Champs, suffering a small setback, he returned in February when running at Taunton in a Handicap Hurdle off 5lb higher.

It was an obvious prep run for Cheltenham finishing last of the sixth, but still running a decent race and strangely the handicapper dropped him 3lb for that run.

Heading into this race off a mark of 137 which is only 2lb higher than his run in the Martin pipe last year, it gives him a huge chance if none the worse for his tumble last time out.

Aintree - April 07 2022
Aintree 12:45
James Bowen

Fils D'oudairies

J: James Bowen
T: Nicky Henderson
Age: 7
Weight: 11-4
OR: 140
Days: 76

At a bigger priced and advertised as an each way shout in this race is the ex Joseph O'Brien trained Fils D'oudairies who is now with the Seven Barrows based trainer Nicky Henderson.

A decent horse in Ireland only running over fences for O'Brien one of his best runs came in January last year when a narrow second to the smart Envoi Allen in Grade Three company.

Falling at the Cheltenham and Punchestown festival after that he was sent into a P2P under Enda Bolger and was pulled up with it looking like fences was not his forte.

Moved to Henderson, he has only been seen once to date and he was a superb second of 11 at Ascot over 2m3f when just behind the smart Unexpected Party.

Not seen since that run in January he looks to have been primed for this event and off only 2lb higher could be a player.

Will like some rain.

Aintree - April 07 2022
Aintree 13:20
Paul Townend

El Fabiolo

J: Paul Townend
T: W P Mullins
Age: 5
Weight: 11-4
Days: 97

The first Grade One event of the afternoon is the Top Novices Hurdle over 2m 1/2f and we are siding with the very unexposed El Fabiolo for Willie Mullins.

The Simon Munir and Isaac Souede owned gelding was bought after running twice in France, with his last run coming at Auteuil when a good third over 2m2f.

Seen just once since moving to the Closutton maestro he bolted up on stable debut at Tramore on New Year's Day landing a Maiden Hurdle by 13 lengths.

Looking an obvious talent he has not been seen since suffering a small setback but stepping up in trip could bring improvement and it is very much unknown just how good he could be.

Aintree - April 07 2022
Aintree 13:55
Charlie Deutsch

L'Homme Presse

J: Charlie Deutsch
T: Venetia Williams
Age: 7
Weight: 11-4
OR: 164
Days: 23

One of the races of the afternoon on day two of the meeting is the Grade One Mildmay Novices' Chase and we have pledged our allegiance to the superstar L'Homme Presse.

He was campaigned very lightly over hurdles last term, obviously going over the larger obstacles was always at the forefront of connections thinking, and that was a brilliant decision made by them.

L’Homme Presse has won all five of his chasing starts by a combined 53.5 lengths, and he has seen to be getting better with every run.

Making a smart seasonal debut at Exeter over 2m3f, he then went to Ascot and landed a Graduation Chase over 2m5f in emphatic style.

On New Year's Day he put up another career best to take the Grade Two Dipper Novices' Chase by 10 lengths giving weight away to the mare The Glancing Queen.

Looking to land Grade One honours next time out he improved once more to take the Scilly Isles Chase by 21 lengths.

Heading into the Cheltenham festival last time out going up in trip to three miles he made every yard from the front to land the Grade One Brown Advisory Novices' Chase.

He has been a breath of fresh air for Venetia Williams and although having a tough race last time out in different conditions to that of Friday's, the fifth in his last race has won since and he should keep improving.

Aintree - April 07 2022
Aintree 14:30
Mark Walsh

Fakir D'oudairies

J: Mark Walsh
T: Joseph Patrick O'Brien
Age: 7
Weight: 11-7
OR: 164
Days: 48

Next up is the Grade One Marsh Chase over 2m4f and Fakir D'oudairies is looking to land back to back renewals of the race and his fourth Grade One in his career.

Bounding onto the scene in the UK when bolting up in a Grade Two at Cheltenham for juveniles. His impressive antics saw the gold and green of McManus swoop and purchase him before he was sent off favourite for that years’ Supreme. 

Beaten into the he stayed on like a trooper and hinted then that his future could lie over further than the minimum trip. 

Immediately moved to chasing, he made handy use of his four year old weight for age allowance. Beating Melon on chase debut, he was then a lucky winner of the Grade One Drinmore when Samcro blundered two out. 

Second in last years’ Arkle he again looked tapped for a bit of pace, but again put in a solid performance to take Put The Kettle on all the way.

In open company he’s ran over two miles being beaten by Notebook, three miles where he didn’t stay the trip and pulled up and then dropped right back down to two miles to be second to Chacun Pour Soi in the Dublin Chase.

He then headed into the Grade One Ryanair Chase at the Cheltenham festival and was again another solid second behind the wide margin winner Allaho, who would have beaten anyone on the day.

Next time out the six year old gave a career best performance over fences to take the Grade One Melling Chase at Aintree, seeing off the likes of Politologue.

Looking to round the season off in style he went up to three miles for the Grade One Punchestown Gold Cup and although finished third he was a long way behind Clan Des Obeaux and Al Boum Photo, with the three miles being too far.

This term he returned in the Grade Two Clonmel Oil Chase at Thurles when bolting up by 15 lengths and off the back of that he ran onto into fourth a star studded renewal of the Grade One John Durkan Chase.

Sent back to Thurles next time out against long time rival Allaho, he could only manage a 12 length second in the Grade Two Horse & Jockey Hotel Chase.

O'Brien last time out sent him to Ascot placing him in the weak Grade One Ascot Chase and he dually obliged to win easily.

Skipping the Cheltenham festival to keep him fresh for his title defence, he looks to be one of the best bets of the Friday.

Aintree - April 07 2022
Aintree 15:05
Connor Brace

Pink Eyed Pedro

J: Connor Brace
T: David Brace
Age: 11
Weight: 10-0
OR: 132
Days: 40

One of the trickiest events of the week is the Grade Three Topham Handicap Chase over 2m5f and with around 30 runners heading to post we have had two stabs at the race, both from an each way stand point.

The first is the 11 year old Pink Eyed Pedro that at 20/1 could outrun his odds, but he will have to put up a career best.

The David Brace trained animal is a very consistent horse without doing too much winning, placing in sixth of his last nine events.

One of his stand out runs to date comes when second of 22 in this race last year, loving the national fences and just being beaten by the well handicapped Livelovelaugh.

Heading into the race this year off 5lb lower off a mark of 132, if being in similar form has to be of interest having some classy course form, but he may just find some lesser exposed horses too good.

Worth a shot at 20/1.

Aintree - April 07 2022
Aintree 15:05
Harry Cobden

Tamaroc Du Mathan

J: Harry Cobden
T: Paul Nicholls
Age: 7
Weight: 10-7
OR: 142
Days: 34

At a very similar price is the Paul Nicholls trained Tamaroc Du Mathan who deserves his chance in a race like this and up in trip.

The seven year old was a fair hurdler but since being sent over fences last season has been a much better animal, making a winning debut at Wincanton, he then finished second to Shishkin in a Grade Two and backed that up in the Grade Two Pendil Novices' Chase when up in trip.

Starting this term at Aintree in the Old Roan Handicap Chase he unfortunately was pulled up and after that at Sandown was below par again.

However, he bounced back to form in a big way last time out when second behind the smart Paint The Dream at Newbury in the Grade Three Greatwood Gold Cup.

Going up in trip again is going to bring more improvement having stayed on well the last day and off the same mark as last time out, he could go close.

Aintree - April 07 2022
Aintree 15:40
Harry Cobden

Gelino Bello

J: Harry Cobden
T: Paul Nicholls
Age: 6
Weight: 11-7
OR: 138
Days: 35

The final Grade One of the day on Friday comes in the Sefton Novices' Hurdle over the extended three miles and Gelino Bello for Paul Nicholls has some serious form in and around this trip.

A decent bumper horse, the six year old son of Saint Des Saints won on his first start and was then a solid third at Newbury behind the smart Good Risk At All and I Like To Move It.

Sent hurdling this term he has been seen five times, winning over 2m4f at Aintree on his seasonal debut and then up in trip bumped into the talented Blazing Khal at Cheltenham's November meeting in a Grade Two.

Tried over three miles he was another good second behind the talented Blazing Khal for Charles Byrnes and then down in trip and grade at Kempton he was a solid fourth of 19 in the Listed Lanzarote Handicap Hurdle.

Having a bunch of strong form he boosted it once more when last seen at Newbury seeing off the talented Peking Rose by nine lengths to win a Novice Hurdle.

Missing the Cheltenham festival for this event, he could be the value in the field.

Aintree - April 07 2022
Aintree 16:15
Kevin Brogan


J: Kevin Brogan
T: Ben Pauling
Age: 6
Weight: 10-8
OR: 125
Days: 34

The final event of the afternoon at Aintree on day two is the Handicap Hurdle for Conditional jockeys and Amateur Riders and again we are going dutch with such a big field on offer to look at.

The first is the Ben Pauling trained Severance who has the talented Kevin Brogan taking off 3lb but aside from that he holds some leading form.

Two starts ago at Cheltenham he gave a seasonal best effort to finish half a length second behind the progressive Cormier in a decent handicap hurdle.

Taking on the same rival in a hotter race at Kelso in the Morebattle Handicap Hurdle, he was a good fourth behind some well handicapped horse.

Dropped 2lb for that run and with a 3lb claimer on board he is effectively 5lb lower for this event, which makes him well in.

Aintree - April 07 2022
Aintree 16:15
Cillin Leonard

Whizz Kid

J: Cillin Leonard
T: Dr Richard Newland
Age: 6
Weight: 10-8
OR: 125
Days: 16

At a similar each way price is the French exploit for Dr Richard Newland Whizz Kid who has only been seen three times in England over hurdles and has shown some reasonable form.

Not enjoying the heavy ground on seasonal/British debut at Sandown in the Grade One Tolworth Hurdle he was a long way behind the superstar Constitution Hill.

In calmer waters the last twice he got off the mark at Catterick beating his closest rival by 27 lengths and then at Ludlow on good ground under a penalty he went on to win again by close to 10 lengths.

Going into a handicap for the first time in this off a mark of 125 with a 5lb claimer on board he could be extremely well handicapped and looks a bet.