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Scottish Grand National 2024: Dates, runners, history and more

The Scottish Grand National is a Grade 3 National Hunt steeplechase which is open to horses aged five years or older and takes place over the marathon distance of four-miles at Ayr.

It is the highlight of the year's racing calendar in Scotland, with the Scottish Champion Hurdle also on the card.

The Scottish National, alongside those at Aintree and Fairyhouse, helps to form the triumvirate of major spring Grand Nationals across Britain and Ireland.

Horse Racing

Scottish Grand National date

This year's race is scheduled to take place at 3.35 on Saturday 20th April, one week after the Aintree version. The Scottish National follows the Irish and English versions this year, though this is not always the case.

Scottish Grand National venue

The race is held during Ayr's two-day Scottish Grand National Festival meeting on the south-west coast of Scotland.

Ayr is Scotland's premier racecourse, with racing dating back to the first official meeting in 1771. The jumps course is a left-handed one-and-a-half-mile circuit with nine fences. It runs downhill to the home turn and thereafter there is a gentle rise to the finish, a run-in of 210 yards.

Scottish Grand National how to watch

The big race can be watched via the bet365 Sports Live Streaming platform and on Racing TV. The Scottish National will also be available to watch on STV/ITV, alongside selected other races from the two-day meeting.

Scottish Grand National details

There are 27 fences to be jumped in the Scottish Grand National during the journey of four-miles. The race is a handicap open to horse aged five-years and older. Ground conditions at Ayr can vary greatly, with the track very testing when it is wet, but also prone to drying and offering really quick ground underfoot.

Scottish Grand National history

The race, then known as the "West of Scotland Grand National", was first run at a course near Houston, Renfrewshire in 1858. It consisted of 32 jumps, mainly stone walls.

It was later run at Bogside Racecourse, near Irvine but has found a home at Ayr since 1966.

The first horse to win a Scottish Grand National and an English Grand National was Music Hall, victorious at Aintree in 1922, while Little Polveir (Ayr 1987, Aintree 1989) and Earth Summit (Ayr 1994, Aintree 1998) have achieved the double in modern times.

Three horses - Couvrefeu II (1911, 1912, 1913), Southern Hero (1934, 1936, 1939) and Queen's Taste (1953, 1954, 1956) – have won the Scottish Grand National on three occasions.

Scottish Grand National most successful trainer

Separate records are applied since the Scottish National found it's home at Ayr in 1966. The most successful trainer in the current guise is Ken Oliver with four wins – coming via The Spaniard (1970), Young Ash Leaf (1971), Fighting Fit (1979) and Cockle Strand (1982).

Scottish Grand National most successful jockey

Separate records are applied since the Scottish National found it's home at Ayr in 1966. The most successful jockey in the races' current incarnation is Mark Dwyer, winner on board Androma in 1984 and 1985 and again on Moorcroft Boy in 1996.

Scottish Grand National famous winners

Red Rum is the most famous of them all. The three-time Aintree hero - 1973, 1974 and 1977 – also managed to win at Ayr in 1974 for trainer Ginger McCain and rider Brian Fletcher, carrying a whopping 11st 13lb on his back – unmatched by any winner since.

To date, Red Rum is the only horse to win the English and Scottish Grand Nationals in the same year.

Scottish Grand National runners

Macdermott currently heads the ante-post market for the 2024 Scottish Grand National at 11/2.

The Brian Ellison-trained Anglers Crag is 8/1 after his win in Newcastle's Eider Chase in February – the same race Kitty's Light won in 2023 before scoring at Ayr.

The field for Ayr is set to be confirmed in the coming days, with the likes of Stay Away Fay at 12/1 for champion trainer Paul Nicholls and Git Maker also at 12/1 for Jamie Snowden, amongst those prominent in the betting ahead of the race.

Hopes of a home-based winner could rely on 20/1 chance Inis Oirr for trainer Lucinda Russell, who won with Mighty Thunder in 2021.

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