Timeform Shortlist: Aintree, Thursday April 6

The 2017 Grand National Festival gets underway at Aintree on Thursday
The 2017 Grand National Festival gets underway at Aintree on Thursday
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Timeform's free Shortlist comes from Aintree on Thursday, the opening day of the 2017 Grand National Festival.

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1.45 Manifesto Novices' Chase (Grade 1) (1) 2m3f200y

Timeform Top Rated:
175 6. TOP NOTCH Nicky Henderson Daryl Jacob
170 1. CLOUDY DREAM Malcolm Jefferson Brian Hughes
166 3. FLYING ANGEL Nigel Twiston-Davies Noel Fehily

Analyst's Verdict:
Top Notch is a most tough and reliable sort and can get the meeting off to a flying start for the Nicky Henderson team by landing a second Grade 1 success of an excellent first campaign over fences. Cloudy Dreams ran a blinder when chasing home Altior in the Arkle and looks the main threat ahead of the prolific Frodon.


2.20 Doom Bar Anniversary 4-Y-O Juvenile Hurdle (Grade 1) (1) 2m209y

Timeform Top Rated:
172p 2. DEFI DU SEUIL Philip Hobbs Barry Geraghty
160 3. DIVIN BERE Nicky Henderson Noel Fehily
155p 5. FORTH BRIDGE Charlie Longsdon Brian Hughes

Analyst's Verdict:
Impossible to oppose Defi du Seuil who confirmed he's comfortably the best juvenile around with a ready win in the Triumph. Forth Bridge has taken really well to hurdling and is a possible each-way alternative to the favourite, while Divin Bere ran a cracker under top weight in the Fred Winter and should be more than capable of making his presence felt in graded company.


2.50 Betway Bowl Chase (Grade 1) (1) 3m210y

Timeform Top Rated:
188 3. CUE CARD Colin Tizzard Paddy Brennan
180 4. EMPIRE OF DIRT Gordon Elliott B. J. Cooper
176 2. BRISTOL DE MAI Nigel Twiston-Davies Daryl Jacob

Analyst's Verdict:
Cue Card did look in trouble when falling 3 out in the Gold Cup but he bounced back from a tumble at Cheltenham to win this last year and is taken to repeat the feat, as his easy Grade 1 win at Ascot in February suggests he's still as good as ever at the age of 11. Empire of Dirt found things happening a bit quick for him down in trip in the Ryanair and may provide the main threat back at 3m.


3.25 Betway Aintree Hurdle (Grade 1) (1) 2½m

Timeform Top Rated:
184 1. BUVEUR D'AIR Nicky Henderson Barry Geraghty
178x 6. THE NEW ONE Nigel Twiston-Davies Sam Twiston-Davies
177 3. MY TENT OR YOURS Nicky Henderson Aidan Coleman

Analyst's Verdict:
Champion Hurdle winners have a mixed record in this, however it's more likely than not that Buveur d'Air will emulate last year's demolition job by Annie Power stepped up in trip and make it 5 out of 5 for the season. Stablemate My Tent Or Yours is the one for the forecast again ahead of The New One.


4.05 Randox Health Foxhunters' Open Hunters' Chase (2) 2m5f19y

Timeform Top Rated:
145 19. ON THE FRINGE Enda Bolger Mr J. J. Codd
144 20. PACHA DU POLDER Paul Nicholls Miss B. Frost
141 1. BALNASLOW Graham McKeever Mr Derek O'Connor

Analyst's Verdict:
On The Fringe may have lost his crown at Cheltenham last month but is yet to taste defeat over these fences and is taken to turn the tables on Pacha du Polder, who has finished behind the selection in the last 2 renewals of this event. Poole Master, Rebel Rebellion and Dineur have all shown a liking for this course before and should go well, whilst the front-running Balnaslow is also respected.


4.40 Betway Red Rum Handicap Chase (Grade 3) (1) 1m7f176y

Timeform Top Rated:
163 9. ASTRE DE LA COUR Robert Walford P. Townend
162 7. BUN DORAN Tom George A. P. Heskin
161 1. ALISIER D'IRLANDE Henry de Bromhead David Mullins

Analyst's Verdict:
Astre de La Cour has progressed in defeat the last twice, and with this just being his fifth start over fences, he should have more to offer, so looks a solid proposition in an ultra-competitive handicap. Alisier d'Irlande put up a smart performance at Naas last month and looks a big danger under top weight, with Theinval and Bun Doran making up the shortlist.


5.15 Goffs Nickel Coin Mares' Standard Open National Hunt Flat (Grade 2) (1) 2m209y

Timeform Top Rated:
128 8. PETTICOAT TAILS Warren Greatrex Gavin Sheehan
126 3. IRISH ROE Peter Atkinson Henry Brooke
125+ 18. SHEARLING Brian Ellison Richard Johnson

Analyst's Verdict:
The highly-promising Shearling should be well suited by this sharp 2m and may have too much speed for Petticoat Tails, who arrives with the best form courtesy of her excellent second in a Sandown listed event last month. The unbeaten Sweetlittlemystery and Redemption Song also make the shortlist.


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