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Jumps fans are in for a treat on Saturday as 24 horses are set to go to post at 3.35pm in the Scottish Grand National at Ayr.
The Grade 3 handicap chase is the most lucrative and prestigious race on the calendar north of Hadrian’s Wall, with the winning connections set to bag a tidy £84,405.
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Scottish Grand National honours could be heading to Wales as Glamorgan-based trainer Christian Williams saddles two of the leading contenders, Kitty’s Light and Win My Wings, while last year’s fourth, The Ferry Master, leads the home charge.
You’ll find Timeform’s horse-by-horse analysis and Scottish Grand National tips from the racing boffins below.
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Scottish Grand National runners
Trainer: Sandy Thomson Jockey: M. M. McDonagh Age: 9 Weight: 11st 12lbs
Useful chaser who got right back on track when runner-up to Nuts Well in listed chase at Kelso (23.4f) 28 days ago. Pulled up earlier in season in Welsh National but he’s not ruled out.
Trainer: Sue Smith Jockey: Sean Quinlan Age: 12 Weight: 11st 9lbs
Smart chaser at his best but he was pulled up going for another win in the Ultima Handicap at Cheltenham 18 days ago. Previously third in this event though, so no surprise to see veteran bounce back.
Trainer: Christian Williams Jockey: Jack Tudor Age: 6 Weight: 11st 8lbs
Yet to score this term (4-time winner last season) but he’s taken his form up another notch, excellent second in Kempton handicap last month. Tongue strap back on. Stays well, and is weighted to go close here.
Trainer: Nigel Twiston-Davies Jockey: Sam Twiston-Davies Age: 7 Weight: 11st 8lbs
Largely progressive novice chaser who bagged his second win at Lingfield (3m) in January. Not disgraced when seventh in Ultima Handicap at Cheltenham since and he’s worth consideration stepping up in trip.
Trainer: Alan King Jockey: Daryl Jacob Age: 9 Weight: 11st 7lbs
Likeable type but he turned in a rare below-par effort when fifth of 7 in handicap chase at Doncaster (24f) in December. First go over this sort of trip and could bounce back after a break.
Trainer: Oliver Sherwood Jockey: Brendan Powell Age: 9 Weight: 11st 5lbs
Came on plenty for his reappearance and proved well suited by the longer trip when winning 3m4f handicap chase at Haydock in November. Off since but he needs considering all the same.
Win My Wings
Trainer: Christian Williams Jockey: Mr Robert James Age: 9 Weight: 11st 5lbs
Arrives on a hat-trick after successes at Exeter and Newcastle, cheekpieces fitted and relishing the step up in distance when bagging Eider Chase (33f) on latter occasion. On the up, and a player in retained headgear.
Trainer: Dan Skelton Jockey: Harry Skelton Age: 8 Weight: 11st 5lbs
Bolted up on his chasing bow at Wetherby in November and better form since when twice placed, third to Ahoy Senor in Towton Chase at Wetherby (24.2f) last time. Should stay well. Much respected back in handicap company for top yard.
Trainer: Olly Murphy Jockey: A. P. Heskin Age: 8 Weight: 11st 4lbs
Has just a maiden to his name over fences but he has been in good form this season, second at Musselburgh (31.5f) latest. Enters calculations despite being nudged up 2 lb.
Streets Of Doyen
Trainer: John McConnell Jockey: Kieren Buckley Age: 8 Weight: 11st 4lbs
Useful Irish chaser who scored at Galway in July. Refused since at Cheltenham and faced stiff task in Brown Advisory Chase there last time. Others are still preferred here though.
Trainer: P. A. Fahy Jockey: D. E. Mullins Age: 7 Weight: 11st 4lbs
Signed off for last season with taking win at Navan (3m). Only twice raced since and really caught the eye when fifth in 3m handicap at Naas 20 days ago. Irish challenger is brother to last year’s third Mister Fogpatches and a bold showing is very much on the cards now his stamina is drawn out.
Trainer: David Pipe Jockey: Tom Scudamore Age: 10 Weight: 11st 2lbs
Useful in France and has matched that form for his present yard in landing 3m handicaps at Southwell and Fakenham. 10 lb higher now though and this is a much deeper contest.
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- SCOTTISH GRAND NATIONAL TIPS FROM OUR EXPERTS FOR SATURDAY’S 3.35 AT AYR
Trainer: Evan Williams Jockey: Adam Wedge Age: 11 Weight: 11st 0lbs
Thorough stayer who scored at Sandown in January. Good third in 3m2f Newbury handicap last time, but this demands more from the veteran.
Trainer: Neil Mulholland Jockey: Richie McLernon Age: 10 Weight: 11st 0lbs
Back to winning ways over fences at Chepstow in October and twice a good third since in Classic Chase at Warwick (29.2f) and veterans’ handicap (3m) at Doncaster. No forlorn hope off an unchanged mark with new headgear tried.
Trainer: David Dennis Jockey: Brian Hughes Age: 10 Weight: 10st 13lbs
Revitalised last term, winning 5 times, and has gone on again this season, excellent third to Win My Wings in Eider Chase at Newcastle (33.2f) last time. Shortlisted eased 1 lb now.
One More Fleurie
Trainer: Ian Williams Jockey: Charlie Todd Age: 8 Weight: 10st 11lbs
Four-time winner at up to 3m last season but he’s yet to fire this term, well held in Ultima Handicap at Cheltenham last time. Big step forward is required.
Trainer: Alan King Jockey: Tom Cannon Age: 7 Weight: 10st 11lbs
Quickly surpassed his fairly useful hurdles form with chase wins at Fakenham (21f) and Bangor (24f) before the turn of the year. Returned from 3 months off with excellent second in 23f Newbury novice handicap, so he’s well in the mix upped in trip.
History Of Fashion
Trainer: P. A. Fahy Jockey: Phillip Enright Age: 8 Weight: 10st 9lbs
Low-mileage Irish chaser who scored at Down Royal in January. Unseated rider early on in Eider Chase at Newcastle before good third in 3m Navan handicap. Possibilities if keeping mistakes to a minimum.
Trainer: Michael Scudamore Jockey: Richard Patrick Age: 9 Weight: 10st 9lbs
Opened his account for this term in 3-runner Newcastle handicap in February before good fourth in Eider Chase there. No forlorn hope off the same mark with his stamina proven.
Ask A Honey Bee
Trainer: Fergal O’Brien Jockey: Connor Brace Age: 8 Weight: 10st 9lbs
Useful form since switched to fences, landing 3-runner novice at Chepstow in January, but he looked unenthusiastic in blinkers when beaten in a match at Catterick 24 days ago. Should stay, but others appeal more.
The Ferry Master
Trainer: Sandy Thomson Jockey: Ryan Mania Age: 9 Weight: 10st 7lbs
Useful winning chaser but he failed to land the odds on back of a wind op when second of 3 at Newcastle (23.4f) 25 days ago. Fourth here 12 months ago though so no surprise to see him step forward now.
El Paso Wood
Trainer: David Pipe Jockey: Philip Armson Age: 8 Weight: 10st 6lbs
Completed 4-timer in French Provinces last year and he gained first win for current yard at Wincanton (26.7f) in January. Posted good fourth in Midlands Grand National at Uttoxeter a fortnight ago and can’t be dismissed.
Trainer: Iain Jardine Jockey: Alan Doyle Age: 10 Weight: 10st 4lbs
Winless since 2020, but he’s a reliable sort and arrives on back of good second at Musselburgh (22f) in February. Tongue strap on for 1st time. Fifth in this contest 12 months ago too and in with a shout.
Trainer: Ian Duncan Jockey: Derek Fox Age: 10 Weight: 9st 10lbs
Yet to score this term, though he was still close up when falling heavily 4 out here (3m) 21 days ago. Course winner too but he needs to show more from 4 lb out of the handicap.
Scottish Grand National tips
Timeform: Pat Fahy’s STORMY JUDGE teed himself up perfectly for this when an eye-catching fifth in the Leinster National at Naas and can go two places better than his full brother Mister Fogpatches who ran a cracker to come third in this contest 12 months ago for the same connections. Stylish Eider heroine Win My Wings heads the list of dangers with her well-weighted stablemate Kitty’s Light and progressive novices Major Dundee, Ashtown Lad and Fantastikas all well in the mix too.
Saturday’s racing tips
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