Grand National tips for 2016: Which horse will win this year's race?

4 and a quarter miles, 30 fences, 40 runners, one winner

Charlie Atkin
Friday 08 April 2016 16:35
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A view of the Grand National trophy
A view of the Grand National trophy

The Grand National is here and it promises to be one of the highest quality renewals in recent years.

One of the most competitive sporting events in the entire calendar, the National is always accompanied by a flurry of bets from all corners of the country.

To hopefully assist in your painstaking research take a look below at a few selections ahead of this year’s race.

Holywell 16/1

Holywell

This horse has some excellent form to his name and could be really rather well handicapped judged on previous form. He’s already officially 4lbs better than his current mark and has every chance to improve further after a solid effort on the opening day of the Cheltenham Festival.

The biggest question is his jumping. An error-prone horse can be easily found out in the National, being such a stern test of a horse’s ability to meet a fence right. This new challenge could bring out the best in Jonjo O’Neill's runner or could be completely against his liking. Either way we’ll find out pretty quickly.

Although it’ll be Holywell’s first time over the unique Grand National fences, he’s performed strongly in the past at the track, winning a Grade 1 at Aintree in 2014 when beating this year’s Cheltenham Gold Cup winner no less.

Goonyella 20/1

Goonyella

One of the dourest stayers in the field, Goonyella’s stamina can’t be questioned. Victorious in last year’s Midlands National and 2nd in the Scottish National means the Jim Dreaper trained gelding is well accustomed to this marathon distance. The latter proved that he can handle good spring ground but the rain that fell earlier in the week would only have helped his chances.

He’s had a few spins around the track and fences already, having lined up in the Becher chase the last two years. Although slightly disappointing in both, the extra distance could see significant improvement.

The Irish haven’t had much recent luck in the race - last winning the National in 2007 - but Goonyella could well buck that trend.

Triolo D’Alene 40/1

Triolo D'Alene

As one of racing’s most eminent trainers, it’s surprising that Nicky Henderson is yet to win a Grand National. However it did take Sir A P McCoy 15 attempts and Richard Johnson, champion jockey elect, is also winless.

That might not put you off the chances of Triolo D’Alene though who has decent course form to his name. Winner of a Topham Chase over these fences in 2013, he’s already proven around the unique obstacles.

After winning the Hennessy Gold Cup back in 2013, Henderson commented that he’d hoped to save the horse for that year’s Grand National. Waiting a couple of years might has hopefully done his chances no harm, still being a nine-year-old.

Wonderful Charm 50/1

Wonderful Charm (L) 

Lastly, one that appears to be some value at the bigger prices is the Paul Nicholls trained Wonderful Charm. Nicholls appears convinced of this horse’s credentials, having trained him very patiently for this.

Some high class form over 2 and a half miles means speed will be no problem, the question remains whether he will see out the race. It’s encouraging that the stable’s retained jockey, Sam Twiston-Davies, takes the ride despite having six runners to choose from.

There you have it, an attempt at one of sport’s most thrilling enigmas.

1st: Holywell

2nd: Goonyella

3rd: Triolo D’Alene

4th: Wonderful Charm

See here for a more comprehensive look at every runner for this year’s Grand National.

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