Tuesday, April 7th, 2020

The Case Against Tiger Roll Winning a Third Grand National

March 12, 2020 by  
Filed under Recent Articles

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Tiger Roll is a remarkable racehorse – the first multiple winner of the Grand National since Aintree icon Red Rum – and now set to go back to Merseyside for a historic hat-trick.

Ahead of his attempt at winning the Cross Country Chase for a third consecutive year and a fifth career Cheltenham Festival win en route, Tiger Roll is a general 5/1 favourite with bookmakers for further Grand National glory come 4 April.

He’s a horse that has been underestimated to punters’ costs before, but is he a false favourite bidding for that Aintree treble? Let’s take a look

History against him

It’s easy to say the past, stats and trends all suggested Tiger Roll couldn’t retain his Grand National crown last year yet he did. However, no horse in the race’s storied history has won three consecutive renewals. Red Rum’s victories came in 1973, 1974 and 1977.


This Photo by Unknown Author is licensed under CC BY-SA

That legend is also the last Grand National winner to carry top weight to victory in the world’s most famous steeplechase. While Tiger Roll can look forward to shouldering 11st 10lb rather than 12st on his back, the highest weight carrying performance of a winner since Red Rum was Many Clouds in 2015 off 11st 9lb.

Worse off at the weights

There are plenty of those who filled the places in-behind Tiger Roll set to re-oppose in the Grand National this year off better terms. Last year’s runner-up Magic Of Light gets 4lb more from him for being beaten 2 3/4 lengths and is a standout 20/1 with bet365 to reverse that form.

Walk In The Mill, who came fourth and was 16 lengths behind Tiger Roll, could now face him off 5lb better terms. He has also won the last two runnings of the Becher Chase over the Grand National fences and has to be respected at 20/1 with William Hill, given his aptitude for the course.

It’s those who took minor honours in the race last year that get the biggest swing in the weights. Just half-a-length behind Walk In The Mill was Anibale Fly off top weight, and he has placed in the Cheltenham Gold Cup and this in the past two seasons.

Now Tiger Roll has the welter burden instead, Tony Martin and JP McManus’s Irish raider has a 13lb swing in weight. Anibale Fly is also skipping the Gold Cup this term to go straight to Aintree and cannot be counted out at a general 25/1 with the bookies.

Before backing any longshots, we would advise you that freebets.co.uk give you the best Grand National free bets. And, we will finish here with a few that fit the bill as a shot to nothing with a bookie’s promotion. Past race winner One For Arthur is 17lb better off for a 25-length defeat and coming sixth on Merseyside. Things haven’t been straightforward for Lucinda Russell’s charge since tasting Aintree glory in 2017, but he’s 33/1 in places, and that is attractive off the revised terms.

Regal Encore is a Grand National veteran and, if sneaking in at the foot of this year’s weights, another who is 17lb better off for leading Irish owner McManus and trainer Anthony Honeyball at 66/1.

This is just part of the challenge facing Tiger Roll. Giving extra weight to horses he has beaten before is one thing, but battling unexposed Grand National contenders like Kimberlite Candy and Burrows Saint who may still have further improvement and are prominent in the betting is another entirely.

Jonathan Burgess

Jonathan Burgess is an official Betfair Accredited Trainer and racing columnist for various respected betting industry publications such as: Betting School, The Daily Punt and Betfair’s Education site. He also runs the Profitable – False Favourites Betting Tips Club Which cost just 24 pence a day. You can also connect with him on Facebook and Twitter


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