Course form gives Nuts N Bolts Scottish National squeak
Given that half of the last 10 winners of the Scottish Grand National had previously shown course-winning form, identifying entrants this year who have already triumphed at Ayr could prove a wise strategy.
Problema Tic is the only current entrant who is unbeaten at Ayr, with his only appearance coming in the Weatherbys Bloodstock Insurance Novices’ Handicap Chase last year on his debut for the yard of David Pipe, having switched from Nicky Henderson.
Being under the watchful eye of Pipe could be significant as he is a trainer that more than most targets races at Ayr and the chase he won has thrown up some Scottish National types in the past.
Notably, the first two home last year, Merigo and Aurora’s Encore, had both previously won the same chase.
Therefore, Problema Tic may have been underestimated at 20/1 in the Scottish Grand National betting, especially as he has been dropped 3lb by the handicapper for finishing fourth at Aintree last time.
However, when it comes to course victories, no Scottish National entrant can match the achievements of Nuts N Bolts, who has triumphed on three of his four starts.
He also ran creditably last time at the Cheltenham Festival when sixth in the JLT Speciality Handicap when competing off his highest career handicap mark.
Nuts N Bolts was doing his best work late on when running into sixth and he is entitled to improve now he is stepping up in distance and has been lowered 2lb by the handicapper.
He is 16/1 to win the Scottish National and has the added advantage of proven winning form on a surface deemed good to soft, which is the predicted ground for Ayr.
Ladbrokes’ quote of 16/1 for Nuts N Bolts is additionally an industry top price.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.