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Thursday, 14 April 2016

Scottish Grand National 2016 Outsiders

Hot on the heels of the Grand National at Aintree – in which we managed third and fourth from our three, generously-priced selections – the Scottish Grand National, run over 4 miles at Ayr on 16th April, gives another chance for a tilt at the ring. Eight of the last ten winners went off at double-figure prices, including 66/1, 40/1, 33/1 and 25/1 so, once again, we shouldn’t be afraid to dabble at the ‘wrong’ end of the market.

Golden Chieftain (25/1) is unlucky not to be chasing a hat-trick, having fallen the last twice with the race seemingly at his mercy, including in the Midlands Grand National at Uttoxeter four weeks ago. A 4lb rise in the weights seems more than fair and, with plenty of winning form on soft and heavy going, it’s something of a mystery why he can be backed at such long-odds, even if he is on a career-high mark.

Not for the first time, Shotgun Paddy (25/1) was pulled-up in the Midlands Grand National, but had previously been running creditably in defeat in decent company and remains well-handicapped on his best form. He’s yet to win beyond 3 miles 5 furlongs, but his second of 17, beaten 9 lengths, behind easy winner Rocking Blues in the Eider, over the testing 4 miles ½ furlong at Newcastle, in February was a solid effort and he’s 2lb lower in the weights this time.

The progressive Berea Boru (33/1) has been making hay at a lower level in recent months and deserves a crack at a big prize. He has stamina to prove, having yet to race, never mind win, beyond 3 miles over hurdles or fences and has done all his winning on heavy going. However, with heavy, thundery rain forecast for the West Midlands on Thursday and Friday, his ability to act under testing conditions could be a blessing come Saturday afternoon and his unproven stamina is factored into his price.

Selections: Golden Chieftain (25/1 with Coral), Shotgun Paddy (25/1 generally available), Berea Boru (33/1 with Boylesports, Ladbrokes and William Hill)

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