Fresh off the back of unparalleled success at the 2012 Cheltenham Festival, things are looking fantastic for trainer Nicky Henderson so I wouldn’t be too quick to dismiss his one and only 2012 Grand National runner, Shakalakaboomboom (it’s easier to say than spell!).
It may even come as a surprise to some that Nicky Henderson has never won the Grand National and in a twist of irony, neither has Paul Nicholls, the trainer he is currently battling for the trainers’ title. However, in Shakalakaboomboom he believes he has one of his best chances of success, following his proven experience around the Aintree fences when finishing seventh in last year’s Topham Chase.
Henderson said: “He’s our intended runner and is all ready to go. After the Topham, in which he jumped beautifully, it was just that two-miles-six was a bit short for him. I think 10st12lb is an area horses can win from and he’s in good form. It’s nice he’s been there once before.”
It’s been a long time coming for Henderson who’s closet chance came from Zongalero’s second place to Rubstic in 1979, although he has had a number of runners placed down the years.