Rachel Blackamore, Bryony Frost and Katie Walsh will be bidding to become the first woman rider to win the Grand National on Saturday – and there is growing confidence in the latter’s big-race mount.
While Blackamore’s mount Alpha Des Obeaux and Frost’s partner Milansbar have been pretty steady in the market, Walsh’s ride Baie Des Iles has been the subject of sustained support and is now priced at 16/1 with 188BET.
The stats suggest Baie Des Iles is up against it, as no seven-year-old has won the race since 1940. But the mare ticks a host of other boxes and there is clearly confidence behind her.
“Baie Des Iles is really well at home and we are very much looking forward to Saturday,” Walsh said, per the Guardian. “She did a nice piece of work towards the end of last week and everything has gone smoothly with her.
“There is so much luck involved in a Grand National. It can depend on where you’ve been positioned throughout the race or whether you’re behind a horse who doesn’t jump well. There are a lot of variables involved.
“Every runner has a chance of winning the Grand National – you just do not know what is going to happen. We’re really excited about Baie Des Iles and it will be great to be a part of the race again – I’m really looking forward to it. ”
If the stat regarding age is taken out of the equation, Baie Des Iles holds excellent claims as she has been trained for the race and will arrive at Aintree a fresh horse.
What is more, her form has an extremely strong look to it and was franked by Isleofhopendreams and Folsom Blue in the Irish Grand National.
In the Grand National Trial at Punchestown in February, Baie Des Iles was a fine third behind Folsom Blue and Isleofhopendreams, who went on to claim fourth and second respectively in the Irish National at Fairyhouse on Easter Monday.
With no concerns over trip or underfoot conditions – Baie Des Iles has won on ground racing from heavy to good-to-soft – and throw in the fact that the daughter of Barastraight has looked an assured jumper, there are plenty of reasons to believe she has a live chance.
As Walsh stated, plenty of luck is required over the four and a half miles of the Aintree test, but confidence is building that she could go two places better than on Seabass in 2012.