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Aidan Coleman: Exclusive Interview | Grand National 2021

Aidan Coleman heads to Aintree ahead of the first Grand National Festival for two years

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Horse Racing - Cheltenham Festival - Cheltenham Racecourse, Cheltenham, Britain - March 14, 2019 Aidan Coleman celebrates winning the 3.30 Sun Racing Stayers' Hurdle Action Images via Reuters/Paul Childs

Champion Chase-winning pilot Aidan Coleman confirms he will ride Balko Des Flos in the 2021 renewal of the Grand National.

The Irishman, who secured Cheltenham Festival success aboard Put The Kettle On last month, has been in flying form in the saddle of late as the eyes of the racing world turn to Merseyside for the three-day National Festival.

Coleman will partner Phoenix Way and Brewin’upastorm on Thursday afternoon, before taking the seat in the latter’s stable-mate Strong Glance a day later.

Davy Russell celebrates on Balko Des Flos, who partners Aidan Coleman in the National, after winning the Ryanair Chase back in 2018

Aidan also spoke about the recent retirement of four-time winning Champion Jockey, Richard Johnson, who announced he was finalising his career in the sport at Newton Abbot on Saturday.

“If you just read all of the tributes to him since he’s retired, you can see just how in high regard he was held in”, Coleman said.

“He was just the most fantastic ambassador for us jockeys and it’s great that he’s been able to retire on his own terms and walk away.

“What a career.”

A stunning duel saw Aidan Coleman and Paisley Park see off Thyme Hill and Richard Johnson at Ascot in December

Coleman enjoyed two memorable battles with Johnson through this campaign aboard Paisley Park, who is set to reoppose Thyme Hill without the Herefordshire rider in the Liverpool Hurdle on Saturday.

The in-form rider states he will join forces with former Ryanair successor Balko Des Flos in the biggest race of them all.

The Grand National Festival gets underway on Thursday 8th April, with the feature race taking place at 5:15pm on Saturday afternoon.

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