Rough reception for Aintree favourite's short price

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The Independent Online
Grand National punters have flown against the evidence of the form book and have ignored Rough Quest, the Gold Cup runner-up, in betting on Saturday's big race. Rough Quest is still the favourite, but has been eased to 5-1, from 4-1 and 9-2, by Ladbrokes and William Hill respectively. "Rough Quest remains lightly backed, despite appearing a handicap good thing," Ian Wassell, of Ladbrokes, reported.

The best supported horses yesterday were Lusty Light and Tartan Tyrant (both 20-1 from 33-1) and Antonin in to 33-1 from 50-1.

With the going at Aintree drying out all the time and now officially good, from good to soft, Tartan Tyrant may still be withdrawn, along with the Tim Easterby-trained Toogood to Be True. An infection in the eight- year-old's hock was discovered on Monday and although this has been treated, the chances of the gelding taking part at Aintree are 50-50.

Surprisingly, Greenhill Raffles, sold at the Doncaster sales on Monday, will be a starter. The gelding, now trained by Lucinda Russell, will race in the colours of her father, Peter. Just 20 minutes after Greenhill Raffles arrived in her yard, Miss Russell gave her first impressions: "He looks fine, although he has a bit of a tummy. We will give him a canter tomorrow - just a bit of a jolly - and then take him to Aintree, working him on the track on Friday."

The Tote Jackpot was won at Huntingdon yesterday to a dividend of pounds 156,655.20 to a pounds 1 stake. One punter, from Coulsdon in Surrey, won pounds 62,662.08 with a 40p line.