Nicky Richards has given Takingrisks the green light for a tilt at the Randox Health Grand National.
And if Takingrisks makes the cut to compete in the world’s greatest steeplechase on April 4, it will be the Penrith handler’s first runner in the Randox Health Grand National for a decade.
“Takingrisks is in fine form, all being well he will run at Carlisle on Sunday (MARCH 15) in the race he won last year - and then, hopefully, we’ll go to Aintree,” said Richards.
“You’d be very hopeful he might run a very good race at Aintree – he’s everything you want in a racehorse.”
Takingrisks received a hero’s welcome when he was paraded at Carlisle following his splendid Scottish Grand National victory at Ayr nearly twelve months ago, 50 years after Nicky’s father Gordon won the race with Playlord.
“Takingrisks is a wonderful horse – just the type of horse my father would have loved,” added Richards junior.
“He jumps, has bags of stamina and keeps galloping.
“I don’t see why he can’t be an Aintree horse.”
Since his victory in the Rehearsal Handicap Chase at Newcastle last November, Takingrisks has run only once when he went over hurdles at Haydock Park in January.
Richards added: “He’s one of those lovely late-developing horses.
“We don’t over-race them and they carry that improvement on through their life.
“If he gets into the Grand National, he should be nicely in at the weights now.”
The trainer will be bidding to emulate his father, who sent out Lucius (1978) and Hallo Dandy (1984) from their Greystoke base to win the Aintree Grand National.
Meanwhile, Richards continued his hot streak with a treble at Carlisle last Thursday.
Richards’ eight-year-old Echo Express set the ball rolling with victory in the conditional jockeys’ and amateur riders’ race.
Richards was celebrating again when outsider Skiddaw Tara, ridden by Ryan Day, made all in the long-distance hurdles race.
Stable mate Glittering Love was runner-up over the three-mile test.
Lanty Slea, also ridden by Day, completed the treble.
Carlisle returns to action on Sunday, March 15.
Booking line, 0344 579 3002, thejockeyclub.co.uk/carlisle