The most popular event on the horse racing calendar takes place this weekend as the Grand National runs from Aintree Racecourse in Liverpool.
It is a yearly National Hunt horse race over 4 miles, 514 yards and 30 jumps that was first run in 1839. It is sometimes called “the ultimate test of horse and rider”.
The Grand National is the most valuable jump race in Europe, with a prize fund of more than £1 million. Not only does the event attract the usual horse racing fans and punters, but it part of the British culture – many people who do not watch or bet on horse racing get involved in this one race of the year.
This is the race that made Red Rum famous in the 1970s – still the only horse to date to have won the Grand National three times. Many who are too young to have watched those races or have even been born will know the name Red Rum, and they don’t necessarily have to be racing fans either. Red Rum died in 1995 which made the front pages of national newspapers. He was buried at the winning post of the Aintree Racecourse, which is still a destination for his fans.
Total Recall is currently the 11/1 favourite with the bookmakers, though only nine favourites have won the event over the past 70 years. On top of that, the weather is expected to make for a tricky and unpredictable course. You can find the Grand National best odds for winners at Betfair.
These odds are all closely followed by Anibale Fly, Blaklion and Tiger Roll, each at 12/1. Last year’s winner, One For Arthur, started the race at 14/1, whilst the last favourite to win was Don’t Push It, ridden by Tony McCoy in 2010.
I’m looking forward to the Grand National this year. Bradley loved it and Aintree really did make it special. They have something planned this year too which I am very grateful for. This is Bradley last year. I wish this could be this year, I wish I could hold him one last time. pic.twitter.com/rvechxUIA9
— Bradley Lowery Foundation (@Bradleysfight) April 10, 2018
The big race starts at 17:15 on Saturday 14 April.
Taking place just down the road and kicking off 15 minutes later is the Premier League football match between Liverpool and Bournemouth at Anfield.
The match is being televised by Sky Sports in the United Kingdom but there has been much criticism over the scheduling of the game. This means that there will be more than 30,000 racegoers exiting Aintree around the same time more than 50,000 football fans will be attending Liverpool, with some of those coming up from Bournemouth on the south coast.
Liverpool fans are currently in dreamland following their 5-1 aggregate thrashing of Premier League leaders Manchester City in the UEFA Champions League quarter-final earlier this week. Fans will no doubt be excited for the prospect of facing Bournemouth this weekend in what many are expecting to be a top game.
— REDSIDE (@jimmypreece75) April 13, 2018
The Reds currently find themselves in third place in the Premier League table – though our of the title race but with the aim of qualifying for next season’s Champions League. Heading into the weekend they currently hold a 10-point advantage over Chelsea for a top four finish, though having played a game more.
Liverpool have been made the very short favourites with the bookmakers with Betfair giving 2/9 on a home win this Saturday. Bournemouth are long shots at 12/1, with the draw 11/2.