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Ellison is dreaming of a Red letter day at Aintree

By Martin Kelly

Definitly Red has his connections dreaming of Grand National glory after he ran out a wide-margin winner of the BetBright Grimthorpe Chase at Doncaster.

An impressive winner of the Rowland Meyrick at Wetherby on Boxing Day before parting company with his rider in the Peter Marsh at Haydock, Brian Ellison's charge was a 7-2 chance for this recognised Grand National trial on Town Moor.

Three horses rounded the home turn with a chance of victory, but it was clear Definitly Red had far more to give than Wakanda and Sego Success, jumping to the front with a bold leap four fences from the finish and soon putting daylight between himself and his rivals.

Ellison's charge safely negotiated the remaining obstacles and came home with 14 lengths in hand over last year's Grand National runner-up The Last Samuri, the 100-30 favourite.

Paddy Power cut Definitly Red to 16-1 from 25-1 for the Randox Health-sponsored National and his trainer soon confirmed the Aintree spectacular as his target.

Ellison said: "Providing he schools well over National-style fences, he'll go to Aintree. I can't see why he won't take to them as he is such a good jumper."

Ginger McCain was an Aintree legend and the late trainer had a hand in the finish of the BetBright Mares' Novices' Hurdle as Lastbutnotleast (2-1), the final horse he purchased, triumphed in colours very similar to those of triple National hero Red Rum.

The seven-year-old is trained by his son Donald, who said: "I don't get excited about much nowadays but I did then, the breeding, the name and colours."

Aintree could also be on the agenda for Thomas Crapper, who ran out an emphatic winner of the Greatwood Gold Cup at Newbury under Charlie Poste.

Elsewhere, a special mention must go to Joao Moreira, who made racing history in Hong Kong when riding eight winners on a single card at Sha Tin.

Belfast Telegraph


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