Grand National five to watch: #2 Chicago Grey
Neptune Collonges ended a 51-year wait when last year becoming the first grey horse to win the Grand National since Nicolaus Silver in 1961 and like London buses, Chicago Grey has the capabilities of ensuring that two come along at once.
Before Nicklaus Silver, punters have to delve back to the archives of the 1870s to find another grey winner of the Grand National, which goes to show just how infrequently they excel in the Aintree marathon.
However, Chicago Grey not only fits 10 common trends among recent winners, but ran a particularly impressive trial last time after showing minimal form earlier in the season.
Having failed to run a meaningful race since his final Grand National tune-up contest last year, Chicago Grey was dropped to a fairly lenient official rating of 141 for this year’s renewal.
This is not only 9lb lower than when well fancied for the Grand National 12 months ago when he was brought down early on, but also 2lb lower than when a fairly comfortable winner of his latest prep race this year at Navan.
Trainer Gordon Elliott has praised a wind operation for this seeming return to form and should he run to a similar level at Aintree and avoid interference, he could be exceedingly well treated, especially as he was rated as high as 151 in the past.
From a trends perspective, Chicago Grey also ticks numerous boxes and is the only horse, along with Forpadydeplaster, who fits 10 common elements.
These include winning over at least 3m, being aged 8-11, 3-6 runs this season with at least one being over hurdles, ran at least 10 times over fences in their career and having run in the final 48 days before the Grand National.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.