2007 Grand National Review and Results

Get a complete analysis of the 2007 Grand National won by Silver Birch at an SP of 33/1.

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Horse Odds Jockey Trainer
1. Silver Birch 33-1 R M Power Gordon Elliott
2. Mckelvey 12-1 T J O´Brien P Bowen
3. Slim Pickings 33-1 B J Geraghty T J Taaffe
4. Philson Run 100-1 Daryl Jacob Nick Williams
5. Liberthine 40-1 Mr S Waley-Cohen N J Henderson
6. Numbersixvalverde 14-1 N P Madden Martin Brassil
7. Longshanks 14-1 Tony Dobbin K C Bailey
8. Puntal 80-1 Tom Scudamore D E Pipe
9. Hedgehunter 9-1 R Walsh W P Mullins
10. L´Ami 14-1 A P McCoy F Doumen
11. Clan Royal 33-1 Mr J T McNamara Jonjo O´Neill
12. Gallant Approach 33-1 J A McCarthy C R Egerton

2007 Grand National

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2007 Grand National Review

A maximum 40-strong field went to post for the world’s most famous steeplechase, a race which remains the most coveted prize for many in the National Hunt calendar. The quality of the 2007 Grand National contest was well up to standard, with the top horse, Hedgehunter, running off a mark of 158, and the bottom pair, Le Duc and Joes Edge, racing off 134.

Long gone are the days when plenty of runners lined up from out of the handicap proper. Significantly, though, eight of the first nine home 12 months ago, had less than 11st on their backs, and this time, the same pattern developed with only one out of the first eight carrying what many see as the barrier that is that 11st mark. Furthermore, the Irish won it for the sixth time in nine years.

Top Performers

SILVER BIRCH won the 2004 Becher Chase, but was a faller at the Chair in last year’s Grand National. It may have been felt by some that conditions would prove too lively for Silver Birch, but on watered ground, he appeared to be in his element. Asserting his superiority from the final fence, he tried to idle in front, but his rider kept him going to win the 2007 Grand National. Considering this former Paul Nicholls-trained charge changed hands for 20,000gns at Doncaster Sales before joining Gordon Elliott, he has proved an inspired buy and his connections deserve the highest praise.

McKelvey, who appeared to be a little flat-footed when the field was finally despatched, after the runners took a long time to organise themselves at the tape, was given a patient ride. Gradually picking up the leaders in a strongly run race, he was in the chasing group coming back on to the racecourse proper for the final time, but it was not until later still that he really found his stride, and he finished strongest of all, albeit just too late to reel in the gutsy winner. This was a fine effort, all the more meritorious since it transpired he had broken down.

Slim Pickings ran admirably. He travelled strongly through the race, perhaps a bit too strongly and, although he looked a likely winner three out, he hit the last, handing the advantage to the winner, and, while he battled home gamely, he could never find quite enough when it mattered.

Philson Run, a confirmed mudlark and long-distance specialist, ran a smashing race on ground many might have considered to be too lively for him. Unfortunately, as an 11-year-old, time may be against him bettering his 2007 Grand National effort.

Middle of the Field

Liberthine, winner of last year’s Topham, gave Sam Waley-Cohen an unforgettable ride, and vice-versa. Left in front at Becher’s on the second circuit, the only mare in the race failed to get home. But it was a gallant effort.

Numbersixvalverde, last year’s winner, was running off an 11lb higher mark this time. Although running creditably, he could never land a serious blow.

Longshanks reappeared after an absence of more than four months. He seemed to lack the stamina of the principals after running a mighty race for a long way.

Puntal, no stranger to the Grand National experience, turned-in another respectable display. Hedgehunter, winner and second in the last two years, found 11st 12lb too hefty a burden to shrug off as he nears the twilight of his career.

L’Ami ran well for a long way, Clan Royal got round in his own time, along with Gallant Approach, who was the last to finish.

Of those who didn’t complete, two horses deserve special mention. Simon, who travelled and jumped like a dream, had still not been asked anything like a serious question when he came to grief six from home. It is anyone’s guess just where he would have finished, but his connections can surely be excused for thinking that this may have been a glory-day that got away.

Bewleys Berry had jumped well and was in a lovely rhythm before crumpling at Becher’s on the second circuit. He still appeared to be full of running. It was a great shame that he was denied the chance to prove his worth.

Back of the Field

Monkershostin frightened himself early on before refusing. Eurotrek suffered interference at the hands of a faller before being pulled up.

Thisthatandtother ran a great race until coming to the end of his tether. He blundered two from home, after which he was immediately pulled up.

Neither Billyvoddan nor Joes Edge appeared to find the necessary rhythm to play a part. Both were pulled up without ever playing a serious role.

Idle Talk lasted well into the race, but eventually parted company with his rider when facing a tall order.

Point Barrow got only as far as the first fence. While Dun Doire, having trailed the field throughout, was pulled up.

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