by ANNIE DALE Elegant Escape has the progressive profile of a Grand National winner – there’s no doubt about it. Already one of the best staying chasers in the business, he is still just seven years old and there is scope for further improvement. He has finished inside the top three in 13 of his 17 runs over fences and that bodes well for a successful bid at Aintree in April.
There is always an element of luck when it comes to the Grand National. Favourites tend to fall short, although Tiger Roll proved that the fancied horses can come out on top in 2018. It is something of a lottery but that only adds to the excitement for horse racing novices and aficionados alike. Watch this space, the 2019 Grand National could be the most exciting yet.
Winner of the 2018 Welsh Grand National at Chepstow, Elegant Escape has proven himself over a longer distance and in a big field, the Colin Tizzard runner defeated 19 rivals in testing conditions. With a sound trip and no jumping errors, Elegant Escape will be right in the mix approaching home and you’d be hard pressed to find a horse in the race to beat him in the closing stages.
Tizzard, trainer of the 2018 Gold Cup winner Native River, is one of the best in the business and he is confident that Elegant Escape can flourish at Aintree. He was a well-beaten third on his previous outing at the Merseyside circuit but that was a Grade One contest and the form is solid. Elegant Escape reversed the form with Terrefort at Sandown Park, finishing 49 lengths clear of the Nicky Henderson runner.
A good run in the Cheltenham Gold Cup will only enhance his chances of winning at Aintree. Capable of producing two huge efforts in the space of a month, Elegant Escape could follow in Tiger Roll’s footsteps by winning at the Cheltenham Festival and claiming Aintree Grand National 2019 glory. Tizzard will have high hopes for Elegant Escape in the coming weeks – it could be a big month for connections
You have to go back to 1940 to find the last seven-year-old winner of the Grand National but Elegant Escape could be the horse to buck that trend. He has the talent to go close in his pursuit of Aintree glory and punters should give serious consideration to the Tizzard runner ahead of April’s meeting. He deserves his spot near the top of the betting and a positive Gold Cup run will boost his claims.
The Grand National is one of the highlights of the horse racing calendar. 40 runners and riders will line up for the Aintree showpiece, all with dreams of finishing first past the post. Elegant Escape has the profile for Grand National success and he could be the one to beat come race day. Watch this space, Elegant Escape means business and he will be tough to stop if near the front at the final fence.