Seek out the big odds on a competitive Friday at Aintree

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It was a mixed bag for favourites on the opening day of the Aintree meeting with Silviniaco Conti going some way to restoring the reputation of the jollies on Merseyside after Hargam’s disappointment.

Nevertheless we are siding with the outsiders on Friday.

There are plenty of big prices to get stuck into as the Grand National itself moves a day closer, and we are getting stuck in.

If you can spot those big prices you can get rewarded with Ladbrokes’ Free Bet offer*.

As always, we have got together to peruse over a quartet of the day’s biggest races in our latest podcast…

But if you want to go straight to point, here are the trio we are siding with each-way on Friday…

Commissioned – 14:15 (Top Novices’ Hurdle)

Stable-mate Qewy is much shorter in the betting, but the fact that Richard Johnson’s mount missed Cheltenham means he will be fresh for this contest.

His effort first time out this season at HQ on decent ground was very taking, and followed that up at Kempton in November, before finding the soft ground not to his liking at the Open meeting.

With a break the five-year-old can repeat some of the form of last season that saw him second in the Adonis Juvenile Hurdle last season, and a close fourth having pulled hard in the Grade 1 Juvenile contest here 12 months ago.

He can use his excellent turn of foot to at least bag a place, and could even take top-spot in a relatively open contest.

Carraig Mor – 14:50 (Mildmay Novices’ Chase)

It’s so often all or nothing for Alan King’s horse, but on his best he could spoil the return to chasing for favourite Saphir Du Rheu.

He beat Southfield Theatre at Newbury earlier this season, so is capable of competing with the best of them, but then disappointed when unseating in the Kauto Star Novices’ Chase and failing to cope with the heavy ground at Haydock in January.

He marked a return after two months off with a very good victory at Exeter. After pulling hard in the early stages, it was impressive how much he had left to pull clear on the bridle to put the race to bed.

Although that contest came after Cheltenham, it was an easy victory, so will be relatively fresh and can go well at a big price.

Annacotty – 16:05 (Topham Chase)

Over the big National fences, you are going to need plenty of luck in running, so taking one at a big price cannot be discounted.

Despite winning a Feltham at Kempton, Martin Keighley went on to disappoint over 3m in subsequent efforts, but has put up some decent performances over shorter in that period.

He won a competitive handicap at Cheltenham on Festival Trials day, and is just 5lbs higher in the handicap for that victory, and as a seven-year-old, can improve again.

There’s no experience over these fences in his record, but he’s yet to fall or unseat in his 12 starts over the larger obstacles, so his jumping does stand the test.

With Ladbrokes paying five places on this race, there is no reason not to have an each-way interest.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Ben Stones

Ladbrokes News’ equine expert, Ben likes nothing more than studying the form to pick out a winner or two for our readers. A Journalism and Media Studies graduate from the University of Winchester, Ben has previously written for a number of football and racing blogs and websites, as well as contributing to the sports pages of his home-town newspaper.