Grey day for Becher Chase punters wanting Grand National tips
Some early Grand National clues could be in order for punters this weekend as the big Aintree fences are tackled for the first time this season in the Becher Chase.
Hello Bud and West End Rocker are two horses almost certain to be involved in both races and will be among the most closely followed and scrutinised for their performance.
However, some punters have an infatuation with grey horses and it could be they who are celebrating come the end of the Becher Chase.
Looking solely at trends, it is hard to put up much of a case for Another Palm, but the horse clearly has a lot going for him and is joint favourite at 7/1 to win the Becher Chase.
The ease at which he travelled and the security of his jumping were particularly apparent when finishing second at Cork on his latest start and these will be valuable assets at Aintree.
Meanwhile, he has previously placed over 3m6f, which shows he should have the stamina to see out the 3m2f of the Becher Chase, even if the ground is on the soft side.
The obvious sticking points are the record of horses aged under eight in the past decade and the fact that Another Palm is still a relative novice in the jumping game.
Punters looking for an alternative could do worse than side with another grey in Swing Bill.
He has already run credibly twice this season so there should be no fitness issues and the fact that he has previous experience of the Aintree fences could be an advantage.
Swing Bill is 10/1 to win the Becher Chase and fits many of the trends of former winners, in terms of the strength of his official rating, where he finished on his last start and the recentness of his latest racecourse appearance.