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The Midnight Club Emerges as Leading National Fancy


Punters can blame it all on the Ruby Walsh factor as the ante post markets are starting to develop in the build up to the 2011 John Smith’s Grand National at Aintree on April 9. Having returned to race-riding just prior to Cheltenham after spending the better part of the season on the sidelines nursing an injury, Ruby Walsh made a major splash at the annual National Hunt showpiece with a number of high-profile scores over the four day festival.

Walsh confirmed at the weekend that he would be opting for the ten year-old son of Flemensfirth and it will prove the first occasion where the Irishman has been in the irons on Willy Mullins charge.

The Midnight Club is unraced at Aintree but managed a third place finish in last year’s Jewson Novices’ Chase at Cheltenham. He had previously run third in the Albert Bartlett to the talented Weapon’s Amnesty in 2009 – his only defeat over hurdles.

The talented Irish chaser has just captured his first graded contest with a win in the Grade 2 Bobbyjo Chase at Fairyhouse and punters appear to be confident about his ability to navigate the exaggerated hurdles on the National course at Aintree.

A number of popular bookmakers have trimmed The Midnight Club to an 8/1 price from 10/1 and, with the Aintree surface remaining dry at the moment, rain in the forecast just might see his price continue to descend as his most recent victory came over ground rated heavy. 

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