Horse Racing Tips

Midlands Grand National: Timeform's runner-by-runner guide

Horses preparing to jump
The Midlands Grand National takes place at Uttoxeter on Sunday

"...had plenty left in the tank when scoring at Wincanton..."

Timeform bring you their comprehensive runner-by-runner guide to the Midlands Grand National at Uttoxeter on Saturday and pick out their 1-2-3...

Midlands Grand National
15:35 Uttoxeter, Saturday
Live on ITV4

1. Regal Encore (Anthony Honeyball/ Ben Godfrey (5))
Veteran has been in excellent form at Ascot, winning and twice finishing placed there this season, but he hasn't been so reliable elsewhere and was pulled up at Newbury on his only other run this term. Easily opposed in a race this competitive.

2. Truckers Lodge (Paul Nicholls/ Lorcan Williams (3))
Was a hugely impressive winner of this race 12 months ago but was hit by a 14 lb hike in the weights. Ran respectably when seventh in the Welsh Grand National at Chepstow on his only completed run since, but more is needed to follow up.

3. Ramses de Teillee (David Pipe/ David Noonan)
Proved better than ever when scoring over three miles and three furlongs at Cheltenham in November and got back on track when fourth in the Grand National Trial at Haydock last month. A thorough stayer so can't be ruled out.

4. Highland Hunter (Paul Nicholls/ Harry Cobden)
Progressive hurdler who has taken well to chasing, scoring at Carlisle before finishing an excellent runner-up at Exeter last month. Has more to offer at marathon trips so is much respected.

5. Acting Lass (Harry Fry/ Sean Bowen)
Very useful stayer at his best but he finished lame on his final outing last season and has been pulled up on both runs this term, including after a wind op on his latest start. The blinkers go on now and he has lots to prove.

6. The Two Amigos (Nicky Martin/ Matt Griffiths)
Likeable stayer who arrives on the back of cracking placed efforts in the Welsh National and Grand National Trial at Haydock. Without a win since 2019 but he holds solid place claims once more.

7. Golan Fortune (Phil Middleton/ Kielan Woods)
Useful hurdler who made a winning start over fences in a three-mile novice chase at Ludlow and has posted two good chasing efforts since. A visor is refitted and he's not ruled out back in this sphere.

8. Achille (Venetia Williams/ Charlie Deutsch)
Progressed well in the 2018/19 season, winning three of his five starts. Has been very lightly raced since but has put up two excellent runs this season, only just denied by Lord Du Mesnil in the Grand National Trial over three and a half miles at Haydock last time. Needs considering.

9. Calett Mad (Nigel Twiston-Davies/ Daryl Jacob)
Won four times over hurdles in the 2017/18 campaign and showed improved form over fences the following season despite failing to win. Looked very rusty after 23 months off in the Becher Chase before unseating at the tenth, however.

10. Captain Drake (Harry Fry/ Bryan Carver (3))
Finished an excellent runner-up in this contest 12 months ago and he got back on track in a first-time tongue tie when fourth in the Welsh National. He's won twice here over hurdles and is in the mix again.

11. Prime Venture (Evan Williams/ Isabel Williams (5))
Returned with a ready win at Sedgefield and finished a good fifth in the Welsh National on his only start since. Finished fourth in this event in 2019 so this thorough stayer can't be ruled out. Cheekpieces are retained.

12. Mighty Thunder (Lucinda Russell/ Blair Campbell (3))
Fairly useful hurder who is upwardly mobile over fences and made it three from four with a wide-margin win in the Edinburgh National over four and a quarter miles in February. He is 10 lb higher now but is a fine jumper and one to be positive about.

13. Tommy Rapper (Dan Skelton/ Harry Skelton)
Made light of a 17-month absence when runner-up in a Exeter handicap hurdle on his return last month, so can't be ruled out back over fences for a top yard.

14. Time To Get Up (Jonjo O'Neill/ Jonjo O'Neill jnr)
Low-mileage eight-year-old who showed promise over hurdles in Ireland. Much improved for the switch to chasing for his new yard and readily won a handicap chase over three miles and a furlong at Wincanton last month. There is more to come up in trip and he is a big player.

15. Truckin Away (Philip Hobbs/ Micheal Nolan)
Fairly useful hurdler who has taken well to chasing and gained a deserved win in a three-mile handicap at Doncaster in December. Should stay well but has been hit with a 10 lb rise in the weights so needs another step forward after his break.

16. Coo Star Sivola (Nick Williams/ Sam Twiston-Davies)
Won the Ultima Handicap Chase at the Cheltenham Festival in 2018. Failed to shine last term, but put up his best run this season when second in a three-mile handicap at Sandown last month. No forlorn hope if his stamina holds out.

17. Doing Fine (Neil Mulholland/ Millie Wonnacott (5))
A veteran course winner who arrives here on the back of a three-and-a-half-mile handicap success at Sandown in December. Has gone up 5 lb but this thorough stayer shouldn't be underestimated after a break.

18. Screaming Colours (William Durkan/ Conor Orr (3))
Lightly-raced Irish chaser who scored at Punchestown in November and has continued on the up since. Finished a clear second in the Grand National Trial over three and a half miles at Punchestown last time and has to enter calculations up in trip.

19. Springfield Fox (Tom George/ David Bass)
Landed his first two chases last winter but was twice pulled up this term before finishing a fair fifth (fitted with cheekpieces) in the Eider Chase at Newcastle last month. Headgear is retained but others appeal more.

20. Final Nudge (Fergal O'Brien/ Paddy Brennan)
Capitalised on a reduced mark at Market Rasen on his sole start last term. Left David Dennis and was off 11 months before finishing an encouraging fifth at Wincanton for his new yard. Remains on an appealing mark and is a lively outsider.

Recommended bets

Timeform's analyst verdict

Jonjo O'Neill holds a strong hand in next month's Grand National and can collect in the Midlands version too with Time To Get Up, who had plenty left in the tank when scoring at Wincanton and remains very much at the right end of the handicap after just three chase starts. Irish challenger Screaming Colours is another progressive sort and feared most, with Highland Hunter much respected too.

1. Time To Get Up
2. Screaming Colours
3. Highland Hunter


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