WYE Valley horse Chambard, ridden by amateur jockey Lucy Turner, has made the cut to race the Grand National on Saturday.

As reported below, the field was being cut to 34 horses on safety grounds, but Venetia Williams’ horse - a winner at Aintree over the National fences last December - is among them.

Veteran Cepage - rated at 250-1 despite winning a £50,000 race at the end of last year – misses out though.


GRAND National-winning trainer Venetia Williams will be hoping to shock the racing world again with another outsider at Aintree this Saturday (April 13).

Having won the 2009 race with 100-1 shot Mon Mome, her two current entries for this weekend's epic steeplechase are Chambard at 100-1 and Cepage at a sky-high 250-1.

This year's field will also be trimmed down to just 34 horses on safety grounds, and whether they come under starter's orders won't be confirmed until two days before the race.

But if not withdrawn by the King's Caple yard, Chambard should start having won the prestigious Becher Chase under amateur woman jockey Lucy Turner over the Grand National fences last December.

The horse - which won the Kim Muir at the Cheltenham Festival under Turner in 2022 – was pulled up in the Welsh National at the end of 2023 after 19 fences of the 3 3/4-mile mud-sapping marathon at Chepstow, and came home eighth out of 21 in the Ultima Handicap Chase at last month’s Festival.

But no doubt locals will get behind Chambard if he runs, with punters famously taking the local bookies to the cleaners when Mon Mome romped home 15 years ago.

Despite Cepage's outsized odds, the French horse also has ability, winning the £50,000 Unibet Veterans' Chase at Cheltenham last December after three years out, and racing at the front until falling back and being pulled up in the Kim Muir at last month's festival.

Cepage won at Cheltenham last December
Cepage won at Cheltenham last December (Venetia Williams Racing)

At the other end of the betting scale, there's also local interest in current favourite Corach Rambler at 11/2 - with Hoarwithy-raised former champion jump jockey Peter Scudamore part of the team behind partner Lucinda Russell's defending champion, who came third in last month's Gold Cup one place ahead of Venetia's L'Homme Presse.

Meanwhile, Venetia's yard celebrated three wins in three races at Bangor two weeks ago, with The Famous Five, Montgomery and Hunter Legend all romping home.

Martator at 11/4 under Charlie Deutsch then followed up with victory in the feature handicap race at Ascot on March 24.

The Grand National is live on BBC1, starting at 4pm.