Grand National: Easysland to skip Aintree 2021 race after Tiger Roll defeat

Easysland was joint top-weight for next month's steeplechase spectacular.

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Easysland will not run in the Grand National 2021 after finishing second to Tiger Roll in the Cross Country Chase at the Cheltenham Festival.

The seven-year-old wowed the crowds at Prestbury Park by inflicting a 17l defeat on Tiger Roll last year but the dual Grand National winner turned the tables by a similar margin last week.

Easysland was set to be the joint top-weight for next month’s Grand National having been allocated a rating of 167 by the handicapper, but trainer David Cottin has called time on his season.

“Easysland has gone off on his holidays to Ireland after his run at Cheltenham on Wednesday, he will not be running in the Grand National,” Cottin said.

“I haven’t spoken to the owners about future plans yet but I am sure that he will have a good holiday and we will bring him back for next autumn.”

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Easysland was sent off evens favourite for the Cross Country Chase but finished 18l behind Tiger Roll – and Cottin believes the sharper ground contributed to the result.

“The was a notable question mark this year with the ground, the better ground was certainly not to our advantage but it suited Tiger Roll, unlike last year,” he said.

“We all know how good Tiger Roll is, he’s a champion. Looking back on last year and the heavy ground, it probably knocked the speed out of Tiger Roll and it suited us.

“I think he ran an excellent race, there is nothing we would change, we were simply beaten by a champion who came to life on the good ground and now he will head off for a well-deserved holiday.”

Tiger Roll is also skipping Aintree – and a shot at a hat-trick of wins – after connections withdrew the 11-year-old amid concerns over his handicap.

When will we know the final field for the Grand National 2021?

A total of 106 entries were lodged by the February 2 deadline and the weights were revealed two weeks later before the first round of cuts followed on March 2. A second set of scratchings will be announced on March 23 before the five-day confirmation stage on April 5. The final field of 40 and reserves will be confirmed at the final declaration stage on April 8.

What are the latest odds for the Grand National 2021?

Paddy Power are offering non-runner money back for the Grand National 2021 until final declarations.

Cloth Cap is the favourite after impressive wins at Newbury and Kelso. The Jonjo O’Neill-trained nine-year-old has also been allocated a mark of 148.

The JP McManus-owned Any Second Now has climbed to second in the betting after an impressive win in a Grade 2 at Navan earlier this month. Kimberlite Candy and Minella Times are also prominent.

Burrows Saint, Santini and Secret Reprieve are hot on their heels in our NRMB book.

*All prices are bang up to date with our snazzy widget, while in-copy odds are accurate at time of publication but subject to change

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