Bookies Corner: Grand National trading trends ahead of ‘the public’s race’
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Bookies Corner: Grand National trading trends ahead of ‘the public’s race’

The Grand National – undeniably the biggest betting event of the year for UK and Irish bettors, captivating the interest of both seasoned and casual punters alike, and of course of major significance to the bookmakers.

Following hot on the heels of the mixed-results Cheltenham Festival, which saw a combo of bookie-friendly results but also big customer wins, the 2023 Grand National is apparently catching the attention of some ambitious bettors looking for an outsider, according to some horse racing enthused operators.

Are there any outsiders that are catching punters’ attention that trading teams should watch out for this Grand National?

Chad Yeomans, Global Head of Communications and PR, Betway: We’ve seen support for three horses in the past few days that have flagged our trader’s attention! Coko Beach won the Grand National Trial at Punchestown in February and has been backed from 50/1 into 33/1. He’s a horse who stays very well and often shows up well in big field handicaps.

The other two are British trained, which gives hope that the Grand National could come back to England for the first time since 2017. The Big Breakaway (40/1 into 33/1) was second in a Welsh Grand National and has been spoken of highly of his trainer, as has Mister Coffey (50/1 into 40/1), whose third at Cheltenham was a good trial for this race.

Cheltenham saw an eclectic mix of ‘bookie friendly’ days and big outsider wins, what are you expecting for Aintree from current trading?

Barry Orr, Head of Media Relations, Betfair: ’The Grand National is the public’s race and Betfair Ambassador, Rachael Blackmore, is the public’s jockey. Her intended mount, Ain’t That A Shame, has been backed in recent days from 33/1 to 20/1 and continues to attract support from the bettors. 

The favourite, Corach Rambler, is artificially short at the moment at 11/2 and we expect him to drift as punters latch onto more value runners. One of which could be Galvin for Gordon Elliott. 

He was second last time out in Cheltenham and with the likely assistance of Davy Russell, who is having his career swansong in Aintree, it could prove a fairy tale send off for the jockey who was aboard the indomitable Tiger Roll, in both his Grand National victories.

How crucial is the Grand National when it comes to engaging a new audience in racing and what sets the event apart as a spectacle?

Henry Beesley, Head of Content, Fitzdares: Historically, the Grand National is the one race of the year where it is entirely acceptable to choose your horse based on a name that you like or perhaps the silks that you’re most familiar with! It’s always such a lottery.

In that sense, it’s great for attracting a new crowd given that it doesn’t require punters to trawl through form lines or to have too much niche knowledge in order to pick your horse.

That, in part, is what makes it such a special race. Everyone can have a bet in the Grand National. The course is so unique, it’s like nothing else in the sport. Any time that horses race over the famous old fences is such an exciting viewing spectacle. This year should be no different!

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