With the official entries for the 2012 Grand National ever imminent, trainers up and down the land are strategically planning on their charges preparations, entering races and even in some cases, avoiding them altogether. Such is the case for West End Rocker who was due to run at Warwick last weekend.
Trainer Alan King decided against sending him in order to protect the horse’s handicap mark. A win could have seen it go through the roof ensuring a incredibly difficult weight to carry for the Grand National when the BHA announced their official weights for this years race.
The 10-year-old routed a decent field in the Becher Chase at Aintree and has a return to Liverpool at the top of his agenda for the Grand National itself.
In the immediate aftermath King had suggested the Classic Chase would be the ideal stepping stone but he will now wait until the weights are published for the National before choosing his next assignment.
“It would not make sense to risk going up another 5lb-7lb just a few days before the weights are released for the Grand National, so we will put his dress-rehearsal for Aintree on hold,” King told his website.
West End Rocker was brought down at fence six in the 2011 Grand National and is around 20/1 for the 2012 John Smith’s Grand National on April 14.