The countdown to the Grand National is fully underway, with just over two weeks to go until the three-day meeting gets underway at Aintree.
The team have already begun tearing up the entries, in hope of finding some interesting runners in the National Hunt showpiece.
Looking ahead to the world’s famous race, the aintree.co.uk squad has dug up three stats that could well influence your selections for the Grand National.
NINE OF THE LAST 11 WINNERS WERE IRISH-BRED
It seems to be a race that runners originating from Ireland do pretty well in, as nine of the last 11 winners of the Grand National were bred across the Irish Sea.
Only two winners since 2010 have bucked this trend and both were French-bred. Neptune Collonges landed success on his final start for Paul Nicholls in 2012 while Dr Richard Newland claimed victory with his first-ever runner in the race with Pineau De Re back in 2014.
This stat can be extended over a further time period as well, as 17 of the last 22 winners were in fact Irish-bred.
It gives a nod to current market favourite Any Second Now, last year’s winner Minella Times and long-distance specialists Run Wild Fred and Longhouse Poet.
While the stat does not consider the likes of Delta Work, Enjoy D’allen and Escaria Ten, all three are French-bred and worth nothing as well.
ONLY THREE OF THE LAST 38 WINNERS HAD WON OR PLACED IN THE GRAND NATIONAL PREVIOUSLY
Not the stat that Any Second Now, Minella Times or Burrows Saint backers wanted to hear.
The legendary Tiger Roll was the last runner to do this after winning the 2018 and 2019 edition for Gordon Elliott, while Ginger McCain’s Amberleigh Horse placed third in 2003 before winning the 2004 contest. Hello Dandy won the 1984 edition after placing fourth the year previously for Gordon W. Richards.
It does spell trouble for last year’s top four as Minella Times (15lbs higher) and Any Second Now (7lbs higher) have been bumped up in the rating, Burrows Saint retains his mark of 156 and Balko Des Flos is not entered at all.
It looks like a difficult task for these three overall, so it could well be worth looking at other options in the market.
12 OF THE LAST 15 WINNERS MADE THEIR FIRST START IN THE GRAND NATIONAL
Runners that are currently unexposed to the Grand National circuit seem to be more favourable looking at this stat, with only three runners with previous experience in the famous race managing to record success after their first start.
Silver Birch fell in 2006 before landing the 2007 edition, Mon Mome finished 10th before landing a huge upset in the 2009 contest at odds of 100/1 and Tiger Roll landed back-to-back successes in 2019.
It seems that experience is becoming less of an important factor in this contest and it could well be worth taking a chance on a runner that has yet to tackle the famous Aintree fences.