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Aintree Day 1 Thursday 8th April Preview and Tips


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Aintree falls just three weeks after the highs and lows of Cheltenham’s four day March extravaganza.


But Aintree is not Cheltenham, and the vagaries can catch out the unwary bettor.


Many punters fail to realise just how different Cheltenham and Aintree are in nature. Despite both being left-handed and extremely difficult to win at, the two courses have absolutely no similarities in terms of their constitution, and the commensurate demands placed on aspirant equines.


In addition, as stated, Aintree comes just three weeks after the Cheltenham Festival itself – and it’s not as often as backers believe that a horse will recover from its exertions in the Cotswolds in time to win here too.


Indeed, since the Aintree meeting in 2000, 74 Cheltenham winners have lined up and just 14 of them managed to win (a strike rate of 18.9%). This would have resulted in a loss of £16.08 to £1 level stakes at SP.


These beaten ‘good things’ included the likes of Master Minded (at 2/5); Wichita Lineman (4/6); Samakaan and Voy Por Ustedes (both 10/11); and Rooster Booster and Captain Cee Bee, who were both sent off at 5/4.


Luckily for the enlightened minority punters tend to ignore these facts.


They latch on to Festival winners believing that – because the market suggests they’re tough to beat, and because they had the quality to win at Cheltenham – they have some kind of right to follow up at Aintree.


The harsh reality is that it doesn’t happen very often at all, and knowing this fact allows you to gain a real advantage over the general betting public.


So what is the winning Aintree formula, if it is not following Cheltenham winners at Liverpool?


By sticking with in-form horses who are coming here unexposed, you provide yourselves with the perfect opportunity to find a big-priced winner or two.


This aims to provide a very profitable angle to finding Aintree winners.


You are simply looking for lightly raced horses who have shown form on their last two starts. Specifically, shortlist horses who finished in the first six last time out, and in the first three on their penultimate start.


From that shortlist, you need to identify those who have run between 30% and 70% of the average number of races contested by runners in the race (over the same obstacle type as today’s race).


For instance, if the average number of hurdle runs by horses in the Liverpool Hurdle is ten, you’d be interested only in horses who had had between three and seven previous hurdle runs.


If you’d taken the time to find and follow these horses, you’d have bagged 24 winners from 164 starters, and a whopping £88.40 profit to a £1 level stake at SP.


Thursday’s potentials are:


2.00 Silver Token


2.35 Al Qeddaaf


3.10 What A Friend


4.20 Safari Journey


4.55 The Nightingale


5.30 Maraafeq




Another shortcut to finding massive priced Aintree winners can be to ignore Cheltenham form completely.


Every year, the shortest priced horses in the betting for almost every race had their previous starts at the Cheltenham Festival. And every year, about half of the races are won by those horses.


But roughly half were not, and these ‘against the crowd’ horses have been hugely profitable to follow, especially over hurdles and in the flat races.


How else could last time out winners be returned at odds of 14/1, 16/1, 25/1, and a truly eye-watering 66/1 last year? Or 16/1 and 25/1 in 2008?


The rules for this fun system are as follows:


- Aintree in April


- Non-handicap hurdles or flat races


- Won last time out


- Didn’t run at Cheltenham last time out


- Ran between 8 and 47 days ago


That simple little ruleset found 11 winners from 113 runners (9.73%) since 2003, for a profit of £154.50 to a £1 level stake, or 136% ROI.


(Note, because of the odds of the horses identified, the strike rate is low at just under 10%, so patience and / or small stakes should be invested in this one).


One of the features of this approach is that you concentrate on runners who may have been contesting lower class races, as opposed to the highly competitive graded events held at courses such as Cheltenham throughout the course of the season. Such horses will be coming here without having to exert too much energy in the process, and will likely be much fresher on the day.


Thursday’s contenders are:


2.35 Drussell, Me Voici, Nafaath, Super Kenny

Edited by chrisobee
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In general I am a fan of systemic betting but not for the big meets. Two of the races today are strong Cheltenham trend races. In both the Matalan and Totebowl, 9 of the previous 10 winners were previously seen at the Cheltenham Festival.

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2.00 Kayf Aramis ew


It's impossible to oppose Big Bucks for win purposes. Tidal Bay is the horse most likely to finish second if he consents to put his best foot forward but, given that is not entirely certain, his price doesn't make much appeal, even in the 'without favourite' market. Bouggler may not stay as well as some of those closest to him in the market and Souffler is closely weighted with Kayf Aramis on their Haydock running in February. The 8/1 available for Kayf Aramis in the 'without favourite' may be worth a small e/w wager.


2.35 Sanctuaire with small saver on Notus De La Tour


There is not much between Sanctuaire and Barizan on Official Figures but the former had the easier race at Cheltenham and was visually the more impressive. Notus De La Tour is capable of closing the gap on the favourite and his slick hurdling makes him a live candidate if the Sanctuaire fails to reproduce his Cheltenham running.


3.10 Nacarat


If Imperial Commander runs to anywhere near his best then he is going to look the price of the century post race, but he cannot be backed with confidence given his overall profile. Though I'm loathe to desert one of my rare Cheltenham successes I'm going for Nacarat as opposed to the other horse I was interested in Carruthers because he is not as dependent on leading and soft ground is not a pre-requisite for him to produce his best.


3.45 Trust Fund/Blue Teen


Baby Run is the likely winner if he takes to these fences and runs to the same level as he did at Cheltenham. However 7/2 is a skinny price for him to do so. Trust Fund has seen it and done it and if Blu Teen is still capable of producing something like the form he was showing for Paul Nicholls a few seasons back then he is capable of a big run.


4.20 Consigliere/Safari Journey/Lennon


A minefield of a race, all 3 horses mentioned fall down on one trend or another but they all look capable of making their mark in this race.


4.55 The Nightingale/Somersby


The Nightingale was a wide margin winner at Kempton lto over similar trip on easy ground leaving Othermix trailing by 18 lengths ( subsequent 2nd in Jewson) with a very assured round of jumping. Comes here fresh and is a likely improver who should make his mark in what looks an ideal race for him.

Somersby 2nd in above average Arkle, shaping as though step up no problem. Bags of tactical speed and an assured, fluent jumper. Went round Sandown 2 seconds faster than Twist Magic when he won the Tingle Creek ( carrying only 5lbs less). Jumped well and sets a high standard.


5.30 Ainama


Useful novice, best effort when 3rd at this meeting over C&D. Stamina stretched over 24f over both starts in handicaps and looks well treated at this more suitable trip. Conditions look ideal.

Silverhand looks well handicapped and is respected.

Edited by chrisobee
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Here we go......


2.00 Souffleur w/o Bucks, 5 on Bf seems generous enough.


2.35 Nafaath with a saver on Sanctuaire.


3.10 Imperial Commander not following the crowd opposing the champ.


3.45 Moncadou


4.20 Pigeon Island


4.55 The Nightingale


Best of luck to you all.

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Not particularly confident about any selections at Aintree today so going to keep to minimum stakes and avoid the favs if possible..good luck everyone.



If Big bucks gets round he wins, but horses often struggle after Cheltenham so you never know...I am going with Bouggler who was more fancied than Souffler and Kayf Aramis the last time in ran despite finishing behind both, I really like Emma Lavelle and she has put cheek pieces on him today, hopefully this will bring about some improvement from this consistent animal.




Looks like another Nicholls/Walsh good thing here, but I really like the look of Super Kenny, he was very impressive on his only run and could be anything. One to keep an eye on at a very big price is D McCains Al Qeddaaf, he was beaten favourite last time but is well thought of, e may be worth having a few token pound for interest.

Selection:Super Kenny



Despite being just 5 runners this looks a very tricky contest, there are question marks about all of the runners so I am having to go with the least exposed in What a Friend, his form in Ireland hasnt really held up that well, but he is a steady jumper.

Selection:What a Friend



This could well go to a huge price animal, Baby Run was superb last time, but at such a skinny price in a 21 runner minefield, he's best left alone, previous winners Trust Fund and Christy Beamish will have their supporters, but I am going for Nedzers Return, trainer Gordon Elliot has won this previously and he knows the time of day, I will dutch this with a big price one in Van Ness who has been going well.

Selection:Nedzers Return........Van Ness



Pigeon Island ran a great race at Cheltenham surprising even his followers, but he may struggle today...and basically i'm struggling to find anything too, so I am going to do Nikola as it is my missus' name...and Kilmackilloge, who has course and distance form, he is lightly raced for an 11 year old supposedly due to bursting blood vessels, but if he is ok he is not without a chance.

Selections:Nikola(because of the missus) Kilmackilloge



Not many runners but good quality, I really like Somersby who is a super little horse, but I am going with a little value in Hey Big Spender, he was entered in a 3 mile race on Friday but goes for this instead, despite unseating last time he has been very consistent this year and could topple the Knight horse.

Selection:Hey Big Spender



Well if you need a winner in this to save your day....good luck...

I will going for Sir Harry Ormesher and Benfleet Boy :-)


Good luck today all, lets get some winners



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Little review of my selections:

2.00 Bouggler ran poorly, as expected Big Bucks won well

2.35-massive price winner, Super Kenny ran poorly, but Al Qedaaff ran well to finish 5th at 80/1 and is worth keeping an eye on.

3.10-What a friend, jumped superbly, great ride from Ruby..WINNER 5/2

3.45-As I said in my writeup could go to a big price winner, and it did at 50/1, Nedzers was unseated, But Van Ness ran a good race to finish 4th at 50/1

4.20. Kilmackilloge fell early, Nikola plodded on but was never in a position to win.

4.55 Hey Big Spender fell, Mad Max won nicely but if Somersby had jumped better I am sure he would have won.

5.30 Benfleet Boy faded after leading early, but Sir Harry Ormesher won at 16/1 yeaaahh. WINNER 16/1


So not a bad first day with a winner at 5/2 and 16/1


Lets beat those bookies tomorrow guys.



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Unlucky with Black Jack mate




Cheers Frankie. A reasonable return on a tough day. Souffleur got me off to a great start and Black Jack rounded it off nicely.


Nice going with Sir Harry obliging, sets you up nicely for tomorrow.

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