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2011 Grand National tip #1: Hello Bud will improve on last year

| 08.04.2011

Thursday marks the start of Aintree’s Grand National meeting but the race everyone is looking forward to is Saturday’s 2011 John Smiths Grand National.

Every day this week we will preview the five horses that we believe have the best chance of winning the Grand National in a bid to help you narrow down the field down from 40 Grand National horses, to five Grand National runners with a real chance.

First up this week is Hello Bud, a 25/1 chance who, since finishing fifth in the 2010 Grand National, has won the Becher Chase at Aintree in December amidst two poor performances.

While the two poor performances are a negative against the Nigel Twiston-Davies-trained 13-year-old, the win in the early season Grand National trial is a huge positive for a horse who will carry 1lb less than when tackling the Grand National fences last year.

Two Becher Chase winners – Amberleight House and Silver Birch – have gone on to win the Grand National while Earth Summit won the 1998 Becher Chase eight months after winning the National.

Twiston-Davies believes his horse is made for the Aintree fences and seven of the last ten Grand National winners had competed over the Grand National fences before suggesting course knowledge is a huge positive.

Since 1970 every Grand National winner had won over three miles – criteria Hello Bud filled when winning the Becher Chase – and his experience with three runs over these fences is also a huge positive.

Nigel Twiston-Davies is searching for a hat-trick of Grand National winners after training Earth Summit to victory in 1998 and Bindaree in 2002, and son and promising jockey Sam Twiston-Davies will take the ride.

With a small amount of rain expected this week, the ground looks set to stay on the fast side and Hello Bud will relish the quickness in the ground.

At 25/1 to win, punters are getting just over 6/1 for a top four finish with an each-way Grand National bet.

A £20 stake on Hello Bud winning the Grand National would return £520. New customers can sign up here to get £60 in free bets.



Robbie Morris

Robbie studied sports journalism at the University of Gloucestershire, an establishment chosen for its proximity to Cheltenham racecourse, where he was a season ticket holder. Upon graduation, Robbie was a contributor to GolfPunk, a national magazine aimed at ridding golf of its traditionalist image, before joining the news.ladbrokes team.