Racing: Grand National principals line up again

Eight of the nine finishers in last year's John Smith's Grand National are among the 119 entries for this season's renewal at Aintree on 14 April.

Martin Brassil's winner Numbersixvalverde is likely to again meet Hedgehunter, the 2005 winner, who was second last year. Clan Royal, Nil Desperandum, Risk Accessor, Puntal, Joes Edge and Inca Trail could also run in their second consecutive Nationals. The Irish have won the National five times in the last eight years and another formidable challenge can be expected with 33 horses entered from across the Irish Sea. As well as Hedgehunter, Willie Mullins has five other candidates while Michael O'Brien has entered Cheltenham Gold Cup third Forget The Past

Grand National: 119 entries

John's Smith's Grand National £700,000 added 4m 4f; Aintree, 14 April:

Abbeytown (Mrs J Riordan, Ire); A New Story (M Hourigan, Ire); Armaturk (P Nicholls); Ballycassidy (P Bowen); Bang And Blame (M W Easterby); Bewleys Berry (J H Johnson); Billyvoddan (H Daly); Bold Bishop (J J O'Neill); Bothar Na (W P Mullins, Ire); Celtic Son (D Pipe); Church Island (M Hourigan, Ire); Clan Royal (J J O'Neill); Cloudy Bays (C Byrnes, Ire); Coljon (P Nolan, Ire); Cornish Rebel (P Nicholls); Cowboyboots (L Wells); Crozan (N Henderson); Dix Villez (P Nolan, Ire); Dublin Hunter (D Hughes, Ire); Dunbrody Millar (P Bowen); Dun Doire (A J Martin, Ire); Espoir Du Bocage (M Scudamore); Eurotrek (P Nicholls); Exit Swinger (Mrs C Ford); Exotic Dancer (J J O'Neill); Fair Prospect (Miss L Russell); Far From Trouble (C Roche, Ire); Forget The Past (M J O'Brien, Ire); Fota Island (M Morris, Ire); Gallant Approach (C Egerton); Garvivonnian (E Mitchell, Ire); Graphic Approach (C Egerton); Ground Ball (C Swan, Ire); G V A Ireland (F Flood, Ire); Hakim (J Spearing); Hedgehunter W P Mullins (Ire); Heros Collonges (Mrs N Macauley); Homer Wells (W P Mullins, Ire); Idle Talk (T George); Inca Trail (D McCain Jnr); Innox (F Doumen, Fr); Iris Bleu (D Pipe); Iris Royal N Henderson; Iron Man (P Bowen); Ivoire De Beaulieu (F Murphy); Jack High (T Walsh, Ire); Joes Edge (F Murphy); Joueur D'Estruval (W P Mullins, Ire); Just In Debt (M Todhunter); Kandjar D'Allier (A King); Kelami (F Doumen, Fr); Kerryhead Windfarm (M Hourigan, Ire); Kerstino Two (C E Longsdon); Kilbeggan Blade (T George); Knowhere (N Twiston-Davies); Korelo (S Gollings); Kymandjen (P Nolan, Ire); L'Ami (F Doumen, Fr); Lacdoudal (P Hobbs); Ladalko (P Nicholls); Latimer's Place (N Gifford); Le Duc (P Nicholls); Liberthine (N Henderson); Little Brick (D Pipe); Livingstonebramble (W P Mullins, Ire); Longshanks (K Bailey); Lord Of Illusion (T George); Lou Du Moulin Mas (P Nicholls); Marble Garden (R Chotard, Fr); Mark The Man (N Meade, Ire); Maurice (D McCain Jnr); Mckelvey (P Bowen); Model Son (Mrs A Thorpe); Monkerhostin (P Hobbs); Naunton Brook (N Twiston-Davies); Ned Kelly (E O'Grady, Ire); Nil Desperandum (Miss V Williams); Nirvana Du Bourg (N Henderson); Nitrat (F Doumen, Fr); Numbersixvalverde (M Brassil, Ire); Ollie Magern (N Twiston-Davies); Ossmoses (D M Forster); Our Ben (W P Mullins, Ire); Parsons Legacy (P Hobbs); Patricksnineteenth (P R Webber); Philson Run (N Williams); Point Barrow (P Hughes, Ire); Preacher Boy (R Hodges); Puntal (D Pipe); Ransboro (N Richards); Ride The Storm (E O'Grady, Ire); Risk Accessor (J J O'Neill); Ross Comm (Mrs S J Smith); Royal Auclair (P Nicholls); Shannon's Pride (R C Guest); Silver Birch (G Elliott, Ire); Simon (J Spearing); Sir Rembrandt (R Alner); Slim Pickings (T Taaffe, Ire); Solarius (D Pipe); Sonevafushi (Miss V Williams); Southern Vic (T Walsh, Ire); State of Play (E Williams); Sybellius D'Artaix (R Chotard, Fr); Take The Stand (P Bowen); Theatre Knight (J H Johnson); The Bandit (Miss E Lavelle); The Outlier (Miss V Williams); The Parishioner (M Hourigan, Ire); Thisthatandtother (P Nicholls); Tikram (A King); Turpin Green (N Richards); Undeniable (Mrs S J Smith); Ursumman (N Madden, Ire); Without A Doubt (C Llewellyn); Zabenz (P Hobbs); Dauphin Des Carres (D Pipe); Iris De Balme (S Curran); Louping D'Ainay (F-M Cottin, Fr).

William Hill betting: 12-1 Hedgehunter, 14-1 Numbersixvalverde, 16-1 Dun Doire, Eurotrek, Far From Trouble, Point Barrow, State Of Play, 20-1 Clan Royal, 25-1 Billyvoddan, Exotic Dancer, Forget The Past, Homer Wells, Ladalko, L'Ami, Liberthine, 33-1 and upwards others.

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When I was supporting Ray La Montagne I was six months pregnant. He had been touring for a year and he was exhausted and full of the cold. I was feeling motherly, so I would leave presents for him and his band: Tunnock's Tea Cakes, cold remedies and proper tea. Ray seemed painfully shy. He hardly spoke, hardly looked at you in the face. I felt like a dick speaking to him, but said "hi" every day. </p>
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