The going ahead of the Randox Grand National Festival (Thursday 7th April to Saturday 9th April inclusive) is currently:
MILDMAY & HURDLE COURSES: Good
GRAND NATIONAL COURSE: Good, Good to Soft in places
Sulekha Varma, Clerk of the Course at Aintree, said today:
“We changed the going today to Good on the Mildmay and Hurdle courses and Good, Good to Soft in places on the Grand National course.
“Throughout March, we only saw 14mm of rain and put down 25 to 30mm of irrigation across all courses between March 22nd and 29th. We did not water yesterday or on Wednesday due to rain being forecast but in the end that did not really materialise – there was just 1mm on Wednesday and a sleety shower yesterday, which did not have any measurable effect.
“We are therefore recommencing watering today, with 5mm set to be applied to all courses and we will continue to monitor the situation going forward to maintain conditions. The forecast is looking somewhat uncertain, with the chance of some damper conditions next week - Monday and Wednesday are currently predicted to be the days with the highest chance of rain.
“I am very happy with where we are at the moment and the turf is looking incredible. We have done most of the work in preparing the racing surface for next week and are now in the stage of maintaining it and applying the finishing touches.”
BEST SHOD AWARD RETURNS
For the first time since 2019, the award for the “Best Shod” horse in the Randox Grand National will be presented. The Worshipful Company of Farriers will present a memento to the owner and farrier of the best shod horse in the world’s greatest chase.
First presented in 2016, this year’s award will be judged by a female farrier for the first time – Sarah Mary Brown. Based in North Yorkshire, Brown was the first female to gain fellowship of The Worshipful Company of Farriers.
RANDOX GRAND NATIONAL TROPHY UNVEILED
This year’s trophy for the winning owner in the Randox Grand National was designed by Anthony Heaney and crafted by silversmith Cara Murphy.
Explaining its design and symbolism, Heaney said: “The trophy design is all about new beginnings, overcoming COVID and the future of healthcare
“The Randox biochip had a huge part to play in the testing of COVID and can be seen held up high by a molecular structure which consists of an antibody and DNA strand intertwining. The drop in the centre and outer structure, which act like handles for the trophy, doubles as the Randox ‘O’ and a horseshoe.
“Below the drop, small molecules rising up from a ripple can be seen. This is a nod to all of the people Randox has tested and helped get back to normality - think of it as them breaking free from their bubble.
“The black gold and yellow gold intertwining is to remind us of the dark days we’ve overcome and how it’ll always be part of us.”