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Dessie hoping to go one better than last year in Saturday’s National

| 06.04.2011

He came within five lengths of his first Grand National winner in 2010, and the man who never got as far as Becher’s Brook as a jockey is hoping to go one better in the 2011 Grand National.

Dessie Hughes and his association with the Grand National is on an upward curve and having failed to finish the Grand National as a jockey, the County Kildare man has endured better success as a trainer.

In 2009 Black Apalachi was the highly fancied 11/1 chance and looked in great shape before unseating Denis O’Regan at Becher’s the second time of asking.

2010 saw Black Apalachi return to the Grand National fences and having been sent off the joint 14/1 third-favourite, Black Apalachi duly obliged the each-way punter by finishing five lengths behind winner Don’t Push It in second.

Hughes has two entries in the 2011 Grand National and the man from The Curragh is quietly optimistic about the chances of Vic Venturi and In Compliance.

Both horses have Grand National odds of 50/1 and having beaten Black Apalachi in the past, Vic Venturi arguably edges In Compliance for the pick.

Vic Venturi may be overpriced at 50/1 and was prominent in the 2010 race before being hampered and unseating Roger Loughran at the 20th fence.

Having finished fourth behind 8/1 Grand National favourite The Midnight Club two starts ago, Hughes has every reason to be optimistic about his horses chances.

The form for In Compliance isn’t as strong especially after he unseated his rider at Cork last month, but In Compliance did finish sixth in the 2010 Topham Chase – run over the Grand National fences – and his course knowledge is a positive.

Of the two Vic Venturi is the better Grand National bet and at 50/1 has the ability to run into a place.

A £20 stake on Vic Venturi winning the Grand National would return £1,020. New customers can sign up here to get up to £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.