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Grand National 2023 Tips - Irish challenger can take a big bite out of his rivals

jon-vine
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Last updated: 14 Apr 2023
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Jon Vine 14 Apr 2023
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  • We've picked out a second runner to back in the 2023 Grand National
  • This huge handicap takes place at Aintree on Saturday 15th April
  • The Big Dog is our second selection at 25/1
Grand National 2023 Tip 2 The Big Dog
Grand National at Aintree. (Getty)

Here's our second selection for the 2023 Grand National, which takes place at Aintree on Saturday 15th April.

The final field is yet to be confirmed for the Grand National, but we've picked out another runner worth backing in this most famous of handicaps.

Grand National 2023 Tip 2 - The Big Dog


Last week, I put Dan Skelton's Le Milos up as my first selection for the Grand National at 20/1. Some may call it folly to back any of the home challengers - given that only four British runners have managed a top-five finish in the last four years, and that Irish raiders will account for at least 60% of this year's field.

When looking for an Irish winner of the Grand National, Gordon Elliott is usually the best place to start. Henry De Bromhead and Willie Mullins will have runners too. However, my eye has been drawn to Peter Fahey's THE BIG DOG, who will surely go off at much shorter than 25/1.

After beginning his campaign with victories in the Munster National and the Troytown Handicap, Fahey's ten-year-old traveled over to Chepstow for the Welsh Grand National. Despite a welter-burden of 12-00, Aidan Coleman's mount was still in there pitching with The Two Amigos right up until the second-last fences, where The Big Dog made a mistake and faded back to third on the run to the line.

Fahey rewarded his star with an outing in the Irish Gold Cup at the Dublin Racing Festival. The Big Dog travelled powerfully that day and had even jumped himself into a narrow lead, before a soft fall at the second-last took Fahey's runner out of the race.

Maybe it's that tumble that explains why The Big Dog is so far adrift of the favourites in the market. Most entrants with two victories in strong Irish handicaps and a fantastic effort under 12-00 in the Welsh Grand National under their belt would usually be priced up around the 16/1 mark, but that fall in the Irish Gold Cup seems to have put the bookmakers off.

Fahey told the press at the start of March that Aintree remains the big plan and The Big Dog jumped beautifully in a recent racecourse gallop. Fahey also said that regular rider Keith Donoghue had committed himself to the ride. Given Gordon Elliott's current problems with injured jockeys, that may not be the case come April 13th when the final field for the 2023 Grand National is confirmed. Whoever gets the pleasure of riding The Big Dog at Aintree, I'm sure he'll give them an exciting spin.

Verdict

I expect plenty of money to come for The Big Dog in the build-up, so I'm going to take a slice of the 25/1 while it lasts.

Grand National 2023 Tip 2: The Big Dog Each-Way @25/1 at BetUK - 10 Units
The Big Dog
Each-Way
@25/1 - 10 Units

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