Tuesday, 9 April 2013
Aurora’s Encore to go for National double at Ayr Racecourse?
Grand National hero Aurora’s Encore looks likely to attempt to become the first horse since the legendary Red Rum to add the Coral Scottish Grand National at Ayr Racecourse to his Aintree crown in the same season.
[Pictured: Aurora’s Encore nearest camera
jumping the final fence at Aintree.]
It was in 1974 Rummie achieved the famous double, and indications are that trainer Sue Smith will bring the horse to Ayr on Saturday 20 April in a bid to achieve the double.
Sponsors Coral have Aurora’s Encore at 10/1 second favourite to go one better than last year, when Merigo got up on the post to deny Ryan Mania’s mount victory. And in a quirk of fate the 8/1 favourite for this year’s race is Rival D’Estruval which will carry the Raymond Anderson Green colours which were successful last season.
The ponderable is whether Ryan Mania will be fit to take the mount after taking a crashing fall at Hexham on Sunday and being rushed to a Newcastle hospital.
The £180,000 Coral Scottish Grand National is the centrepiece of the eight-race Saturday card which now carries a total prize fund of £432,000 due to the addition of the Dbs Spring Sales Bumper.
Friday’s eight races have £105,000 on offer, making the two-day Festival the richest ever in Scotland.
And Saturday’s card could be further boosted if Cheltenham winner Simonsig goes to post in the Arcadia Consulting William Dickie & Mary Robertson Future Champion Novices’ Chase.
Advance ticket sales for the meeting are going well, and for more details on racing at Ayr call 01292 264179 or go online at www.ayr-racecourse.co.uk.
For further information please contact Iain Ferguson on 01292 294972 or 07795 565691.
Ayr Racecourse and the associated Western House Hotel are Founder Members of the Elite Ayrshire Business Circle.