Belfast Telegraph

Grand National: It can pay dividends to compare bookies

By Robert Fenton

Having a bet on the Grand National will see queues galore in bookmaker shops and newcomers wondering what to do.

It is not difficult and there will be plenty of staff on duty to help with queries and provide assistance.

However, a couple of points to take on board beforehand. The competition from firms is fierce in the battle for custom and therefore take time to consult the various adverts in the media to seek out special offers, before handing over your dosh.

Alternatively, stay-at-home punters can open up an account on line or by mobile and get a free matched bet up to £50 with best-odds guaranteed (Ladbrokes).

That means if you take a price and the Starting Price is greater, you will be paid out at the latter odds.

By placing a minimum £5 bet, you then get a free bet equivalent to your stake, either on the same bet or another.

If placing a £10 with Paddy Power, the customer receives a further £20 to invest.

All such bets are subject to terms and conditions but there's nothing to stop an account being closed once the free bet is exhausted and opening a new one elsewhere.

However, it can only be done once in each case and is limited to one household or same computer use.

If having a cash bet in your local shop, make sure and take an early price as it's almost certain to be better than SP.

The layers on course at Aintree are renowned for cutting the price on virtually every horse and it's rare for SP to beat 'early door' odds.

Even better if you find a firm offering guaranteed odds and also the first five places instead of the normal four, for each-way.

The message is; it can pay to shop around.

All horses to clear the first fence: 6/4.

How many will finish: 13/8 16-20; 11/4 11-15; 11/4 21-25; 7-1 10 or less; 8/1 26 or more

Who will go off favourite: 6/4 Teaforthree; 5/2 Monbeg Dude; 7/2 Long Run; 5/1 Tidal Bay; 14/1 Colbert Station; 25/1 Double Seven.

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