In 2013 Balthazar King was one of three serious contenders for trainer Philip Hobbs and more importantly was the one most likely to give him the illusive Grand National win having had his best result back in 2002 with What’s Up Boys when he finished 2nd.
At the time of the 2013 National he had sixteen chase starts under his belt, winning seven of them and finishing in second place twice and at nine years of age was starting to tick all of the boxes needed to perform well in the National.
Second Place in 2014 and 15th Place in 2013
He could only manage 15th place that day but returned in 2014 on the back of four consecutive wins, three of them at Cheltenham and went off as one of the race favourites. He just ran out of enough steam to compete on the run-in, but still ran a blinder and finished in second place behind the winner, Pineau De Re.
He's a classy chaser, often displaying slick jumping ability and isn't afraid to lead from the front which would have been a bonus in the National when it comes to avoiding the fallers. He is a tough and highly versatile eleven year old and has all the right credentials for, jockey Richard Johnson to navigate him again for the Grand National 2015.
He is once again on terrific form and this season has had two runs with two wins, the first of which was at Craon in France, the second at Cheltenham in November.
He will carry slightly more weight this year on 11-02, which may increase if the top horses get withdrawn but it could still be third time lucky for this great horse and finally Philip Hobbs and Richard Johnson may get their Grand National win.
Photo Credit | Meteorshoweryn