Scottish Grand National tips from our experts for Saturday’s 3.35 at Ayr

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Ayr plays host to one of the most prestigious prizes in the National Hunt game on Saturday as a bumper field of 24 jumpers go to post in the Scottish Grand National.

Hill Sixteen, second in the Becher Chase over Aintree’s iconic spruce fences last December, heads the weights from the oldest horse in the race, Vintage Clouds, and the youngest, Kitty’s Light.

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Uncle Paddy’s paying a whopping SIX places for the Scottish Grand National so there’s plenty of each-way value if that’s your sort of thing.

We’ve rounded up our experts’ best bets to help you narrow down your selections for Saturday’s 3.35pm at Ayr.

Matt Chapman: The one that fascinates me is Irish raider HISTORY OF FASHION, who lacks experience and has a terrible win-to-run record, but who might just absolutely lap up this distance. History of Fashion is trained by Pat Fahy in Co Carlow, and has only been seen Under Rules thirteen times, scoring just once at Down Royal over 3m. He hacked up that day. That was on January 25, and afterwards he went against Win my Wings in the Eider only to unseat at the sixth fence. History of Fashion was last out at Navan, and he kept on well without ever looking like winning in a handicap chase. It’s hard to say he’s thrown in off 130, but I suspect this trip could bring out a totally different performance. It’s a chance I’ll risk with a few quid each-way.

Mick Fitzgerald: Jack Tudor nearly pulled off a miracle in the Bet365 Gold Cup at Sandown last year when he got badly hampered. Even though his place was improved in the stewards enquiry, he still didn’t get the race. Christian Williams must be really pleased with how KITTY’S LIGHT‘s season is coming to a head at the right time. She was runner-up last time in a Kempton handicap to stablemate Cap Du Nord and is only 4lb higher than when running such a good race at Sandown last year. The ground is perfect for him, he just needs to jump slickly and that can sometimes let him down.

Frank Hickey: STORMY JUDGE is the one and I’m very, very sweet. As soon as the Leinster National was over, I said he’d win the Irish National – and this is nowhere near as strong as that. Hill Sixteen carries top weight off a mark of 147 and you’ve got horses rated in the low 120s getting a run here. It’s not a very strong renewal.

Stormy Judge ran in two handicaps last season, winning a competitive race over 2m4f on heavy ground at Naas off 120 before following up in a strong novice handicap at Navan off 127. He had Enjoy D’allen, who is among the favourites for the Grand National, back in second and School Boy Hours was 12l back in third, who came out and won the Paddy Power this year. Foxy Jacks was back in sixth and went on to win at the Punchestown Festival. He got 12lbs for that but it looks fair considering what they have done for the form in the interim. He could blow these away! He’s in a different league.

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.

Scottish Grand National tips summary:

Matt Chapman – History Of Fashion
Mick Fitzgerald – Kitty’s Light
Frank Hickey – Stormy Judge
Timeform – Stormy Judge

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