herald

Monday 22 April 2019

Elliott stays on roll

Can Tiger Roll repeat the feat of the legendary Red Rum
Can Tiger Roll repeat the feat of the legendary Red Rum

Gordon Elliott has confirmed his 13 jockey bookings for Saturday's Randox Aintree Grand National with Patrick Mullins one of those to pick up a spare ride for the trainer who will saddle a record number of runners in the race.

Elliott, who won the race with Silver Birch in 2017 and again with Tiger Roll last year, reported all his team to be in good health, including Tiger Roll who will once again be ridden by Davy Russell.

Happier

"I couldn't be happier with them and I'm looking forward to running them all and hopefully we'll get a bit of luck," Elliott told The Herald.

"Davy Russell rides Tiger Roll, Keith Donoghue rides Outlander and Paddy Mullins is on Don Poli," Elliott confirmed of his top four in the weights.

He continued: "Jamie Codd rides Mala Beach, Dounikos is Jack Kennedy, Denis O'Regan rides A Toi Phil and Noble Endeavour is Mark Enright.

"Sean Bowen will ride Monbeg Notorious, Andrew Ring is on Blow By Blow, JJ Slevin rides General Principle, Robbie Power is on Jury Duty, Luke Dempsey on Folsom Blue and Robbie Dunne is on Bless The Wings."

Tiger Roll is the clear favourite as he bids to become the first horse since the legendary Red Rum to win the Aintree feature two years in a row.

"They are in good order and obviously our main chance is with Tiger Roll again," Elliott said. "I don't know if he can do it again, everybody that has ever watched the Grand National knows that you need a lot of luck in the race, but I do know I couldn't be happier with the horse since Cheltenham."

While Tiger Roll is a general 7/2 chance with bookmakers, Elliott's next in the betting is Jury Duty who has been one of the better supported horses in recent days and he is now a 20/1 shot with BoyleSports following more interest yesterday.

"They're all in good form, Jury Duty was very good in Down Royal so he is going there in good order. Mala Beach needed rain but it looks as if they'll get a bit before Saturday and Jamie Codd rides him," said Elliott. "We discussed jockeys with Michael and Eddie O'Leary as obviously they have a lot of runners in the race and Patrick's (Mullins) name came up so we were happy to go with that."

Apple's Jade could run in the Ryanair Hurdle after working yesterday morning and Elliott also revealed plans for his other Grade One runners over the three days in Liverpool.

"Dallas Des Pictons goes for the Mersey Novices' Hurdle on Saturday," Elliott added.

"He ran a blinder at Cheltenham. Felix Desjy runs in the two miler on Friday and Chosen Mate runs in the two-and-a-half miler. He's stepping up but couldn't have done much more so deserves to take his chance."

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