• George Stevens is the most successful jockey in Grand National history.

  • Who will win the 2023 Grand National at Aintree?

  • History shows that horses that start with the letter R are lucky in Grand National betting tips...


2023 Grand National Runners

Any Second Now

Somewhat of a course specialist now and entitled to run his race. He ran well in the Irish Gold Cup too.

Noble Yeats

Won this race last year and finished strongly to take fourth in the Gold Cup. He should be on the premises once again and should be included in your horse racing online bets.

Galvin

Fourth in last year’s Gold Cup and a Grade One winner. He certainly has the class to play a big part in proceedings.

Fury Road

Sixth in the Ryanair Chase at Cheltenham but probably finds anything over 3 miles a struggle nowadays.

The Big Dog

Third in the Welsh National and was going really well in the Irish Gold Cup before falling in the closing stages.

Capodanno

Winner of the Champion Novice Chase at Punchestown at the end of last season and is a youngster on the up. Willie Mullins trains.

Delta Work

Beat Tiger Roll in the Cross Country at Cheltenham last season then repeated the victory this year. Finishing a well beaten third last year is a worry though.

Sam Brown

Won impressively round Aintree’s Mildmay course last year but this is an all together different task for the veteran chaser.

Lifetime Ambition

Performed well over these unique fences in the Grand Sefton back in the autumn and holds an outside chance for sure.

Carefully Selected

Landed the Thyestes Chase at Gowran but appeared to struggle in the Bobbyjo which doesn’t bode well for him over further.

Coko Beach

Easy winner of the Punchestown National Trial but could only manage eighth place in this last year, beaten 66 lengths.

Longhouse Poet

Finished a good sixth in the race last year in the same season he won the Thyestes. He’s a player if his stamina holds out.

Gaillard Du Mesnil

He finished third in last year’s Irish National and was a fortunate winner in the National Hunt Chase. This will be a tough ask for the youngster.

Darasso 

Came a good third in the Kerry National but is still a novice. He has been running over trips less than three miles too.

Le Milos

A promising chaser who won the old ‘Hennessy’ this season. This will be the Skelton’s best ever chance in the National to date.

Escaria Ten 

Placed ninth in the race last year beaten by 75 lengths. Hard to see him doing much better this time around.

The Big Breakaway

Finished third off top weight in the Welsh National but was pulled up in the Ultima. That Welsh form puts him in with a squeak.

Cape Gentleman

The owner’s great grandfather owned the 1923 winner Sergeant Murphy and that’s where the similarities end I’m afraid. He once featured in the Royal Ascot betting too.

Roi Mage

Ran in numerous French steeplechases as a youngster and will absolutely love a soft ground Grand National. He’s a lively longshot for sure.

Diol Ker

A former Leinster National winner, he will be doing all his best work in the closing stages should his stamina reserves hold out.

A Wave Of The Sea

Far too many letters rather than numbers in his form figures and it would be a major shock should he come home victorious.

Minella Trump

He wants proper good ground which he’s unlikely to get now and unfortunately he’s no Red Rum, Amberleigh House or Ballabriggs.

Vanillier

Ran on strongly at the finish in the Bobbyjo, just failing to catch Kemboy and based on that run has to enter calculations in this marathon contest.

Velvet Elvis

Won an ordinary three-mile chase at Fairyhouse in February and was last seen finishing runner-up to Any Second Now at Navan. He’s one to keep an eye on.

Ain’t That A Shame

A consistent type who ran a very good race in a handicap at Leopardstown over Christmas. Henry de Bromhead knows the time of day when it comes to readying a National winner.

Corach Rambler

Recently won the Ultima Chase at the Cheltenham Festival and trainer Lucinda Russell won this in 2017 with One For Arthur. He has a massive chance.

Enjoy D’allen 

It’s over two years now since his last win and he was a first fence unseater 12 months ago. Probably best to look elsewhere.

Mr Incredible

Willie Mullins’ charge ran a good third in the Kim Muir and might have taken it but for fluffing the last. He can be temperamental down at the start however. 

Mister Coffey

Nicky Henderson’s record has been awful in the National for decades now and I cannot see this second-season novice breaking that hoodoo.

Cloudy Glen

This could well turn out to be another Mon Mome moment for trainer Venetia Williams as this grey is majorly overpriced at 100/1. His Haydock trial was superb.

Hill Sixteen

Beaten by a nose in the 2021 Becher Chase this ten-year-old has an outside chance at a big each-way price.

Gabbys Cross

There must be a question mark about his stamina for this contest based upon his breeding, even if the maestro Henry De Bromhead trains him.

Recite A Prayer

Third in the Cork Grand National but this is an entirely different ball game for the Mullins runner.

Eva’s Oskar

Managed to place fourth in the Eider Chase over four miles on his last start so the trip should not be an issue. Rain would also aid his cause.

Our Power

Unbeaten in two starts this season and a horse clearly on the up. Bookmakers have certainly priced him up accordingly.

Dunboyne 

Fourth in the Kim Muir and does everything at his own pace. He might plod on at the end if it becomes an attritional National.

Francky Du Berlais

Ran an absolute cracker in the Cross Country Chase at the Festival but he’ll need to eke out some extra stamina reserves from somewhere.

Fortescue 

Stays longer than the mother-in-law and ran superbly in the Becher Chase. The wet weather has come just right for him too.

Back On The Lash

Cross Country specialist but ideally wants good ground to be seen at his best.

Born By The Sea

Came over to Wetherby in November 2020 and nabbed a 3m Chase as the outsider of three. He’d need an amazing amount of luck to nab a Grand National though.


  • Age: 8 of the last 10 winners were aged between 9 and 11.

  • Price: 2 of the last 10 favourites have won. 3 of the last 10 winners have come from the top 3 horses in the Grand National odds.

  • Last Run: 3 of the last 10 winners won on their last run before the Grand National with 3/10 placing on their last run. 9/10 winners ran within the last 35 days. 5/10 winners ran at the Cheltenham Festival on their last run.

  • Weights: 9/10 winners carried a weight of between 10st 6lbs and 11st 6lbs to victory.

  • Previous Aintree Form: 10/10 winners had at least one previous run at Aintree. 4/10 winners had at least one previous win at the track.

  • Previous Distance Form: 10/10 winners had at least one win over 3 miles or longer.

  • Previous Chase Form: 10/10 winners had at least 3 Chase wins, with 8/10 having at least 4 Chase wins to their name.

  • Rating: 9 of the last 10 winners were rated between 148-160.

  • Graded Win: 6/10 winners had at least one previous win in a Graded race.

  • Season Form: 7/10 winners had at least four runs that season already.

Grand National Winners:

Did you know that certain letters of the alphabet are much luckier than others when it comes to picking out Grand National winners at Aintree racecourse?

Of course there’s absolutely no science to it, but horses that have started with the letter “R” have won the world’s  greatest steeplechase at total of 21 times since 1839.

Aintree legend Red Rum clocked up three victories for Team R, while the likes of Rule The World and Red Marauder have been two of the more recent winners.

Six winners adrift from the leader is the letter “M” on fifteen victories, with the most recognisable names to those with short-term memories being Many Clouds in 2015, 100-1 surprise scorer Mon Mome in 2009 and Monty's Pass in 2003.

The letter “S” brings up the third spot, providing punters with 14 winners over the years including Silver Birch in 2007 and Seagram in 1991.

The full list of letters and their respective number of Grand National winners is as follows:

R (21) M (15) S (14) A (13) T (13) C (11) G (9) L (9) P (9) E (8) B (7) W (7) D (6) F (6) J (6) H (4) N (4) K (3) O (3) V (2) I (1) Q (1) Z (1) U (0) X (0) Y (0).

Grand National Trainers:

Let’s take a look through the current crop of trainers from the UK and Ireland and their respective records in the Aintree marathon.

Some have enjoyed success under Grand National sponsors while others are still waiting for their first win in the race.

Gordon Elliott (3 wins)

Elliott’s first win in the race came in 2007 when Silver Birch won under Robbie Power. He then had an eleven year wait before Tiger Roll took top honours in 2018, then again in 2019.

Anything the Cullentra stable sends over to Merseyside to compete in the race has to be considered and invariably at least one of Elliott’s runners goes well.

Nigel Twiston-Davies (2 wins)

With wins in 1998 with Earth Summit and 2002 with Binderee, Twiston-Davies is a formidable trainer when it comes to preparing horses for these unique Aintree fences.

If anything Twiston-Davies is well overdue another success, so keep your eyes peeled as to what he saddles.

Willie Mullins (1 win)

For a massively successful operation, it’s really surprising that Mullin’s sole Grand National winner to date was Hedgehunter in 2005.

He’s been knocking on the door several times since and you certainly cannot underestimate anything he enters.

Paul Nicholls (1 win)

Nicholls finally registered his first win in the National with Neptune Collonges in 2012, but has mainly had mixed fortunes with the rest of his runners over the years.

Again, for a big stable, punters would have expected more from the Ditcheat maestro but the cookie hasn’t always crumbled for him.

Nicky Henderson (0 wins)

It still beggars belief that one of the most successful National Hunt trainers of all time still does not have the Grand National on his illustrious CV.

Henderson’s first runner in the Grand National came in 1979 with a horse called Zongalero, which ironically finished the runner-up and that has been the closest he has ever come to landing the race.

Grand National Jockeys:

  • George Stevens is the most successful jockey in Grand National history with five wins. His final triumph came in 1870.

  • Bruce Hobbs is the youngest jockey to have won the race. The 17-year-old was victorious aboard Battleship in 1938. The oldest jockey was Dick Saunders who won aged 48, riding Grittar.

  • The first female jockey to compete in the Grand National was Charlotte Brew in 1977, riding Barony Fort at 200-1.

  • Since then 16 female jockeys have had mounts in the race, with Katie Walsh being the most successful this far when she came third in 2012 aboard Seabass.

  • Of the current crop of female jockeys, Ireland’s Rachael Blackmore looks the most likely candidate to be the first female winner of the Grand National.

  • The 2009 winning trainer, Venetia Williams, also rode in the race. She fell at Becher’s Brook on the first circuit when riding 200-1 chance Marcolo in 1988.


*Credit for all images belongs to AP Photo*

 

Steven is a sports and horse racing enthusiast and is a member of the Horseracing Writers and Photographers Association (HWPA) in the United Kingdom.

He is a regular visitor to Paris Longchamp for the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe and a lifelong fan of the Aintree Grand National, a subject he writes about 52 weeks of the year. Last year he reached the impressive milestone of attending the last 30 renewals of the Grand National.