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Close Brothers Red Rum Handicap Chase – Aintree – Thursday 11th April

Thursday 11th April 16:40

Will Smith provides an 8/1 each-way 2-star ** ante-post bet for the Red Rum Handicap Chase on Day 1 of Aintree's Grand National meeting.

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Bookie Selection Best Odds Market Bet
Unexpected Party 8/18/1 4.40 Aintree
EW 4 places 1/4
Place BetPlace Bet

Date of Tips: 08/04/2024

Disclaimer The odds for these selections were correct at the time of publishing (15:59 08/04/2024) but may have changed since. Please check the latest price before placing your bet.

Plenty of the 27 entries for Thursday’s sole handicap offering on Day 1 of Aintree’s Grand National meeting, the Close Brothers Red Rum Handicap Chase at 4.40, will have been aimed here for the ‘spring ground,’ that is often the prevail of this meeting.

Unfortunately for them, the wettest March in some areas since 1891, with further heavy showers due over the next few days, means that anything better than an overall description of ‘heavy’ would be a welcome surprise.

As a punter though, these kinds of extreme occurrences mean that often betting angles can present themselves. I feel one such opportunity is to back last month’s Grand Annual winner Unexpected Party to back up that effort, by winning the Red Rum Handicap Chase at a general 8/1 each-way for 4 places.

Dan Skelton has been prolific with his entries over the three days at Aintree, in a bid to not miss a trick when it comes to placing his horses to good effect, as he attempts to wrestle the trainer’s championship away from his previous mentor Paul Nicholls. He has four entered, but given Harry Skelton has just been placed next to the name of Unexpected Party, it seems as if he is the chosen one.

At a general 8/1 each-way now, it is worth locking in that price, and also the 4 places as it could be entirely possible that the final field is some way under the industry standard of 16, given the conditions.

I mused before the Grand Annual that Unexpected Party had never had his ideal set of conditions – 2m over fences, left-handed, soft or heavy ground, and a strong tempo – and it is no surprise that he fairly skipped around Cheltenham to win that race cosily.

If in anything like the same form, Unexpected Party is by far and away the one that they will all have to beat, at a track that promises to suit him even more. At 8/1 each-way generally for 4 places, he is the sole 3-star *** Ante-Post play for Day 1 of Aintree’s Grand National meeting.

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