The famous Aintree Racecourse is home to the fantastic Randox Grand National every year and the big race is set for Sunday’s 5.15pm start!

The actual meeting for the Aintree Festival starts today with the Opening Day, followed by Ladies Day on the Friday and then we finish with Grand National Day on the Saturday.

All in all, it is a fantastic festival of horse racing, and one of the most popular days for punters across the UK and beyond, many of whom will have their one bet a year on the outcome of the race.

That means you can expect betting sites like bet365 Sport to be very busy from now until the race starts on Saturday taking bets from a wide range of punters.

Get up to €100 in Bet Credits for new customers at bet365 Bet365 Review
Min deposit €5 Up to €100 in Bet Credits
Bet Credits available for use upon settlement of bets to value of qualifying deposit. Min odds, bet and payment method exclusions apply. Returns exclude Bet Credits stake. Time limits and T&Cs apply. The bonus code BET247 can be used during registration, but does not change the offer amount in any way.

Let’s now take a look back at the history of the race, starting with a look at what makes it so special.

The Grand National – A National Treasure?

The very first Grand National was contested in 1839, although there are records of similar races being held in the years preceding this race, although they are not counted in the official records.

Somewhat appropriately given how open and difficult to predict the race would become, the first winner was portentously called ‘Lottery’.

Over the years, the race has produced some of the most exciting and memorable moments in horse racing and sporting history. Red Rum chasing down Crisp in the 1973 race to clinch the win right on the line, the famous outsider Foinavon winning the race when a riderless horse caused a mass pile up at the fence that now bears the name of the winning horse.

There was also the emotional win for Bob Champion and Aldaniti in 1981, when the jockey overcame cancer and the horse a lameness in his leg as a youngster to claim an emotional win.

Part of what makes the meeting so special is the Grand National course, which features 16 jumps, 14 of which are jumped twice in the race itself.

Some of those fences have the most iconic names in horse racing history; Becher’s Brook, Valentine’s Brook, the Canal Turn, the Water Jump and the fearsome The Chair are all iconic fences, most of which must be jumped twice.

In recent times, the meeting has moved from a one-day meeting to a three day meeting and that action begins today as we can see from the full list of races across all three days below.

Day One – Opening Day

  • 1.45pm – The Manifesto Novices’ Steeple Chase (2m 4f)
  • 2.20pm – The Jewson Anniversary 4-y-o Juvenile Hurdle (2m 1f)
  • 2.55pm – The Aintree Bowl Steeple Chase (3m 1f)
  • 3.30pm – The William Hill Aintree Hurdle (2m 4f)
  • 4.05pm – The Randox Foxhunters’ Open Hunters’ Steeple Chase (2m 5f)
  • 4.40pm – The Close Brothers Red Rum Handicap Steeple Chase (2m)
  • 5.15pm – The Goffs UK Nickel Coin Mares’ Standard Open NH Flat (2m 1f)

Day Two – Ladies Day

  • 1.45pm – The Mildmay Novices’ Steeple Chase (3m 1f)
  • 2.20pm – The Wiliam Hill Handicap Hurdle (2m 4f)
  • 2.55pm – The Top Novices’ Hurdle (2m 0.5f)
  • 3.30pm – The The Marsh Steeple Chase (Registered as the Melling) (2m 4f)
  • 4.05pm – The Randox Topham Handicap Steeple Chase (2m 5f)
  • 4.40pm – The Cavani Menswear Sefton Novices’ Hurdle (3m 0.5f)
  • 5.15pm – The Abersoch Land and Sea Handicap Hurdle (2m 0.5f)

Day Three – Grand National Day

  • 1.45pm – The EFT Systems Maghull Novices’ Steeple Chase (2m)
  • 2.25pm – The Bridle Road Handicap Hurdle (3m 0.5f)
  • 3.00pm – The Turners Mersey Novices’ Hurdle (2m 4f)
  • 3.35pm – The JRL Group Liverpool Hurdle (3m 0.5f)
  • 4.15pm – The William Hill Freebooter Handicap (3m 1f)
  • 5.15pm – The Randox Grand National Steeple Chase (4m 2.5f)
  • 6.20pm – The Weatherbys Standard Open (2m 1f)

Today is the day when the final field of the national is reduced to 40 runners from the 50 that had been declared earlier in the week. We already knew four of those horses would not run (all owned by Gordon Elliott) but the final field for the race is confirmed today,

Runners And Riders For The 2023 Grand National

NoRunnerAgeTrainerPrev. OddsCurrent OddsJockey
26Corach Rambler9Lucinda Russell6/1 fav6/1 favDerek Fox
2Noble Yeats8Emmett Mullins8/17/1Sean Bowen
7Delta Work10Gordon Elliott8/18/1Keith Donoghue
12Longhouse Poet9Martin Brassil12/112/1JJ Slevin
1Any Second Now11Ted Walsh12/112/1Mark Walsh
13Gaillard Du Mesnil7Willie Mullins14/112/1Paul Townend
28Mr Incredible7Willie Mullins14/114/1Brian Hayes
15Le Milos8Dan Skelton16/114/1Harry Skelton
23Vanillier8Gavin Cromwell20/116/1Sean Flanagan
6Capodanno7Willie Mullins22/116/1Danny Mullins
35Our Power8Sam Thomas20/120/1Sam Twstn-Davis
3Galvin9Gordon Elliott20/120/1Davy Russell
25Ain’t That A Shame9Henry De Bromhead20/120/1Rachael Blackmre
5The Big Dog10Peter Fahey25/125/1Aidan Coleman
9Lifetime Ambition8Mrs John Harrington25/125/1Sean O’Keeffe
17The Big Breakaway8Joe Tizzard33/133/1Brendan Powell
11Coko Beach8Gordon Elliott33/133/1Harry Cobden
10Carefully Selected11Willie Mullins33/133/1Michael O’Sullivan
24Velvet Elvis7Thomas Gibney40/140/1Darragh O’Keeffe
19Roi Mage11Patrick Griffin40/140/1Felix de Giles
29Mister Coffey8Nicky Henderson40/140/1Nico De Boinville
4Fury Road9Gordon Elliott40/140/1Jonjo O’Neill Jr.
14Darasso10J.P. O’Brien40/140/1Luke Dempsey
32Gabbys Cross8Henry De Bromhead50/150/1Peter Carberry
36Dunboyne8Gordon Elliott50/150/1Jack Tudor
34Eva’s Oskar9Tim Vaughan50/150/1Alan Johns
39Back On The Leash9Martin Keighley66/150/1Adam Webb
22Minella Trump9Donald McCain66/166/1Theo Gillard
38Fortescue9Henry Daly66/166/1Hugh Nugent
20Diol Ker9Noel Meade66/166/1Kieren Buckley
27Enjoy D’Allen9Ciaran Murphy66/166/1Simon Torrens
31Hill Sixteen10Sandy Thomson66/166/1Ryan Mania
30Cloudy Glen10Venetia Williams66/166/1Charlie Deutsch
37Francky Du Berlais10Peter Bowen66/166/1Ben Jones
8Sam Brown11Anthony Honeyball80/180/1Johnny Burke
40Born By The Sea9Paul John Gilligan100/1100/1Philip Enright
21A Wave Of The Sea7Joseph O’Brien100/1100/1Shane Fitzgerald
18Cape Gentleman7John Joseph Hanlon100/1100/1Jody McGarvey
33Recite A Prayer8Willie Mullins100/1100/1TBC
16Escaria Ten9Gordon Elliott80/1100/1Adrian Heskin

Who Are The Horses To Back In The 2023 Grand National?

With 40 runners, an arduous length and 30 difficult fences to jump, picking a winner in the Grand National in any year is tough and 2023’s race will be no different.

Last year’s winner Noble Yeats, has already found support, being backed in from 8/1 to 7/1 over the last 24-hours, while Gaillard Du Mesnil has also shortened from 14/1 to 12/1.

However Vanillier and Capodanno are the two biggest movers in the ante post betting over the last 24 hours, coming in from 20/1 and 22/1 to 16/1 each respectively.

Looking at the odds, my horse to back for the win is probably either Delta Work or Noble Yeats, but I actually feel the each way market here offers better value.

Bet365 is paying out on the top six finishers at odds of 1/5 and as such, I think there are some great options here namely:

  • Mr Incredible – 14/1
  • The Big Dog – 25/1
  • Mister Coffey – 40/1
  • Fury Road – 40/1

So good luck if you are going to have a bet on the National this weekend and enjoy the rest of the fabulous Aintree Festival this week!