The Grand National run annually at Aintree rates as one of the biggest and richest steeplechases in the world. It’s a thoroughbred horse race that stops the United Kingdom for a few dramatic moments in April with thousands of fans in attendance and millions more watching around the world.
Despite being known as a nation of football lovers, not many sporting events capture the imagination of the UK public quite as much as the Grand National manages to.
The leading online sportsbooks make the most of this, offering odds and markets on the outcome of the race. Bettors can make their predictions and place wagers on the racing spectacle from Liverpool on the day of the event or during the build-up, with prices often available up to 12 months in advance of the off.
This is known as antepost betting, and dedicated followers of the sport consider it a great way to get better odds on their bets.
Study The Form Or Rely On Luck?
The National attracts all kinds of bettors, from those that follow the form of each horse, keeping up to speed with results and performances to the once a year bettors who enjoy a small stakes each-way bet. Bettors adopt different tactics when aiming to beat the bookies and land a profit from the race.
Some follow the form, and others put their trust in a pundit or tipster. Plenty go with a horse with a familiar-sounding name or the attractive silks of a jockey.
With more than four miles and 30 obstacles standing between the starting field and the champion, there’s no guaranteed way to beat the bookie and studying the form gives you as much chance as picking a horse at random, relying on pot luck.
There are ways in which you can improve your chances of picking a winner, though. The more research you do into the race, the greater likelihood of you predicting the result.
A growing number of bettors are putting their trust in the trends, looking for clues in the numbers of past results.
Looking ahead to the 2022 Grand National, we advise some of the areas you should be focussing on now if you want to pick the winner in April.
Checking the age of a horse could help you narrow down the field and improve your chances of backing the winner.
An interesting trend from the list of recent Grand National winners is that each of the last six champions has been aged either eight or nine years old.
Four of those six have been eight-year-olds at the time of winning, and the fact Tiger Roll won it twice at eight and nine supports that stats.
When making your bets, look for horses that fall into that age bracket.
One owner group has enjoyed success in recent races, with the world-famous Gigginstown Stud providing us with three of the last five champions.
Connections were in the winner’s enclosure in 2016 with Rule the World and back to back in 2018 and 2019 with Tiger Roll. It will be interesting to see what they send out for 2022.
It rarely pays to back the favourite, and if you had your money on the market leader in each of the last ten years, your success rate would have been one in ten.
That’s nowhere near good enough, especially if you are backing the shortest price runners. The spare on that list was Tiger Roll in 2019, who won at SP 4/1. That means, for a £1 stake, you would have spent £10 and returned only £5.
It’s obvious from those numbers that it’s worth taking on the favourite with an outsider at big odds. That is one of the reasons why bettors love the Grand National.
It has a field stacked with big prices, and you can win big off a small stake. Looking through the last ten winners, we find that all but one has carried double-figure odds.
Tiger Roll won at 4/1, but the year before scored at 10/1. Other nice prices included Auroras Encore at 66/1 in 2013 and Rule The World at 33/1 in 2016.