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Silver By Nature bids for Aintree success

Geoff Brown
Silver By Nature is owned by St Johnstone chairman Geoff Brown

Lucinda Russell's Silver By Nature, owned by St Johnstone chairman Geoff Brown, is to be aimed at the £950,000 John Smith's Grand National on 9 April.

Russell's nine-year-old grey is rated 16-1 for the first Scots victory in the Aintree race since Rubstic in 1979.

Russell has always been keen on the grey taking his chance in the world's greatest steeplechase, as long as the ground is safe.

"As long as the ground is OK he will be running in the National," said Russell.

Silver By Nature put himself in line for a trip to Liverpool on April 9 by defying top weight of 11st 12lb in the Grand National Trial at Haydock to win the staying handicap chase for the second year running.

He's been running away up the gallops which is a mild concern. He's not usually like that, but he's been a lot fresher since Haydock. I think it's nice for the horse that he's got his confidence back

Lucinda Russell

No grey has won the world's greatest steeplechase since Nicolaus Silver in 1961 while there has only been one Scottish-based winner.

"Ideally we want soft ground," said the Kinross handler. "I trust Aintree that they will produce good, safe ground and that is the most important thing to us.

"The National itself has changed so much in the past five to 10 years. It's a staying chase for which they produce safer ground and the fences are a hell of a lot safer.

"He's been running away up the gallops which is a mild concern. He's not usually like that, but he's been a lot fresher since Haydock. I think it's nice for the horse that he's got his confidence back.

"He'd had a few hard races and he finds that Haydock track easy and he just enjoys himself.

"He'll train away for the next three weeks and have an easy week before the race and we'll just get him fresh for Aintree.

"He won't have a racecourse gallop. He can have a variation here as we've got two yards so we'll take him across to the other one and work him on the grass.

"We'll make an Aintree-type fence, but I'm quite happy with his jumping. I thought he jumped quite well round Haydock. He's an experienced horse now and Peter Buchanan [jockey] said his run at Newbury [in the Hennessy] just crowned him and made a man of him. Ever since then his jumping's been good."

Silver By Nature will carry 10st 12lb.



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see also
Silver guns for Aintree gold
07 Mar 11 |  Scotland
Silver By Nature tops Welsh list
08 Dec 10 |  Horse Racing
Silver By Nature leads home hopes
03 Mar 10 |  Horse Racing
BBC racing coverage
09 Apr 11 |  Horse Racing


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