TREVOR Hemmings is eyeing a FOURTH £1m 2020 Randox Health Aintree Grand National winner with Vintage Clouds at the world renowned Merseyside track on April 4.
“Vintage Clouds is a very good horse – very steady,” said Octogenarian Mr Hemmings, 84, who was successful in winning the Aintree showpiece in 2005 with Hedgehunter, repeating his success in 2011 with Ballabriggs and completed a trio of successes, when Many Clouds won in 2015.
Owner of Championship football club Preston North End, Isle of Man based owner Mr Hemmings, CVO, will be hoping Vintage Clouds can score another victory, to add to his tally of National winners.
Vintage Clouds, is trained by Sue Smith, wife of Showjumping legend Harvey, who said: “After consideration we decided to enter Vintage Clouds for the Grand National.”
The decision came in the wake of Vintage Clouds winning the Peter Marsh Chase at Haydock Park in January: “Having won so well in the Peter Marsh Chase we kept our options open.
“We discussed it at length with Trevor – and decided that we would enter the 2020 National,” she said.
“Vintage Clouds jumped superbly in the Peter Marsh and has come out of the race very well,” said Sue.
Vintage Clouds fell at the first fence in the 2019 Grand National – and pulled up in the Becher Chase in December – at Aintree.
“Vintage Clouds has struggled slightly over the Aintree fences, notably in the Becher – but we want to keep our options on the table,” said Sue, who trained 2013 Grand National winner Auroras Encore.
Gordon Elliott trained 10 year old Tiger Roll, 5-1 favourite, tipped when winning in 2019, became the first horse since Red Rum to win back-to-back Nationals.
Elliott has made a staggering 18 entries in the National, more than any other trainer, including noted Delta Work and Champagne Classic.
Fellow Irish trainer Willie Mullins has entered 10 horses, headed by Irish Grand National winner Burrows Saint, and noted duo, Cadmium and Total Recall.
Native River, Sizing John, One For Arthur, Bristol De Mai, Walk In The Mill and Kimberlite Candy are amongst the plethora of 100 plus entries.
Sir Alex Ferguson co-owned Give Me A Copper, trained by Paul Nicholls, and Wales Rugby Union star Jonathan Davies co-owned Potters Corner, are also noted entries.
The 2020 Randox Health Grand National weights will be announced at St George’s Hall in Liverpool on February 11.