Punters latching on to Sandown form - and backing McManus runner for Red Rum
Everything you need to know before Thursday's action
Your one-stop shop for Grand National festival news on Thursday morning
Going update: 'we're happy where we're at'
The going remains good to soft on all three courses after 0.6mm of rain overnight, with GoingStick readings as follows – 5.8 chase course, 5.6 hurdle course and 5.4 National course. It is expected to stay dry during racing on Thursday.
Clerk of the course Sulekha Varma said: "It's good to soft all over, which is what we were aiming for. We had a little half a millimetre of rain overnight and that was partially expected, but it's not been much and it's been fine.
"We're set for a cloudy, windy day and still cold. We might have some more rain coming tonight and if that stays in the picture we might not need to do anything overnight, but we'll make that judgement later on.
"We're happy where we're at and it's an ideal starting point. There's a beautiful covering of grass and the team have done a great job."
Updated at 8.04am
Non-runners: three out on day one
4.05 Greensalt (infection), Captain Cattistock (lame)
5.15 Code Name Lise (Lame)
4.40 The Cob (bad scope)
Updated at 9.42am
Market movers: Phil proving popular
Punters are latching on to a piece of handicap chase form from Sandown last month as a key pointer to the Red Rum Handicap Chase (4.40).
The Sam Thomas-trained Grey Diamond was successful there and has been backed into 8-1 (from 14 on Wednesday) for this 2m event.
Runner-up Dostal Phil is 5lb better off here with that rival and has similarly attracted support, with his price shortening to 10-1 (from 14) with several firms.
Dual King George VI Chase hero Clan Des Obeaux was 9-4 favourite for the Betway Bowl with bet365 on Wednesday but has drifted since and is a general 3-1 market leader now.
Support has come for the Nicky Henderson-trained Mister Fisher, who has been cut to 6-1 (from 8) on Thursday. He was pulled up in the Ryanair Chase at the Cheltenham Festival.
2.50 Aintree Clan Des Obeaux 3-1 (from 9-4 on Wednesday), Mister Fisher 6-1 (from 8)
3.25 Aintree Jason The Militant 3-1 (from 4 on Wednesday)
4.40 Aintree Dostal Phil 10-1 (from 14), Grey Diamond 8-1 (from 14 on Wednesday)
Updated at 11.20am
The social section
It will be bizarre for the GN meeting @AintreeRaces to be BCD. It will be hard to watch.— PaulJohnsonBookmaker (@PJohnsonBet) April 8, 2021
Remember it’s YOU, the people who turn up who make it special. Its you who create the atmosphere and make it unique. With all it’s foibles there’s nothing quite like it.
See you next yearpic.twitter.com/a46P8rjGkm
The Randox Grand National field has been declared and @AintreeRaces is all set for three magical days, culminating in the world’s greatest horserace.— Lee Mottershead (@leemottershead) April 8, 2021
We’re getting plenty of Westlife and Ronan Keating on the loudspeakers, which presumably bodes well for Ireland’s runners. pic.twitter.com/6SbxNhdEHb
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