Grand National Tips

Paul Nicholls' Aintree Grand National Festival Preview: Pic D'Orhy is my best chance of the week

Betfair ambassador and horse racing trainer Paul Nicholls
Listen to Paul discuss his Aintree team with Vanessa Ryle

Betfair ambassador Paul Nicholls discusses his plans for this week's Aintree Grand National Festival 2024, including runners Bravemansgame, Ginny's Destiny, Pic D'Orhy and more, and explains why he is not feeling the pressure in the Trainers' Championship. Listen to his conversation with Racing...Only Bettor's Vanessa Ryle...


Listen to Paul Nicholls' talk to Vanessa Ryle about the 2024 Aintree Grand National Festival and see an edited summary of his comments below.


Listen to Paul Nicholls Aintree Grand National Preview


Paul Nicholls on Grand National changes

"There are fewer horses in the field for the Grand National this year and an earlier start time of 16:00 on Saturday. Here is what Paul had to say about the changes:

"It is hard to make the National 100% safe but the changes that they have made in the last couple of years have helped. Anything that improves safety, and the welfare of the horses, is a good thing but at some point you have to draw the line."


Paul Nicholls on his Aintree big guns

Thursday 13:45 - Ginny's Destiny

"It's unbelievable how much he has improved this season. He had a hard race at Cheltenham and who knows whether the horses who ran there will perform well at Aintree.

"As long as that race did not leave a mark on him, and the horse that beat him day Grey Dawning (who is the favourite here), this will be an interesting race. I don't think there is much between them. "We have a chance if Ginny's Destiny performs to his best."

Thursday 14:20 - Kalif du Berlais

"He's a big chasing horse and we have like him since the day he came to us. I think there is lots of improvement to come from him. He ran very well at Kempton, but we may have rode him wrong, and I have seen his homework and am very happy with him. He has a leading chance."

Thursday 14:55 - Bravemansgame

"He had a hard race in the Gold Cup at Cheltenham. All season, he has not had the ground he likes. The track will suit him better here, possibly, but I would still like to see it dry up a bit. Ideally, he would like good ground but it will not be good at Aintree. He seems well and I am looking forward to him running because he is well capable of running if everything goes right in the mix."

Friday 15:30 - Pic D'Orhy

"He is fresh [after not running at Cheltenham]. I think his last run was a career best. He was positive and jumped brilliantly, beating two smart horses. This track suits him really well, flat and left-handed.

"It is a good looking race but we are really looking forward to it. He is very, very well."


Paul Nicholls on the Trainers' Championship

"I'm not feeling the pressure like Dan Skelton probably is. I have had the experience so many times I've been involved in battles with Willie Mullins that have gone down to the last day of the season.

"You can only do your best and Aintree plays a big part [in the outcome of the Championship]. Willie is sending lots of horses over and if one of them won the National that would give him a fighting chance [in the Trainers' Championship].

"Dan is £25K in front of me but that's nothing in the scheme of things at the moment. There is a big three weeks to come but Aintree will play a big part in it.

"I am feeling more pressure to help Harry Cobden win Champion Jockey. If he can do that I will be delighted."


Now read Paul Nicholls: Stable tour ahead of my intended runners at Aintree


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