Horse Racing This Week: 15th – 21st April

Scottish Grand National at Ayr Racecourse

There’s an excellent mix of flat and jumps racing to look forward to this week, including Newmarket’s Craven meeting at Newmarket, plus the Scottish Grand National at the weekend. We run through all the key racing to look out for this week. 

Monday 15th April

Racing returns to Windsor for the first time this year, with the season opener attracting some competitive fields. There’s a particularly interesting jockey booking on their card, with top Irish jockey Shane Foley coming over for just one ride, on board warm favourite King Of Light (2.50pm). 

Elsewhere we have racing to look forward over jumps at Kelso, plus an all-weather meeting at Kempton in the evening. 

We’ll also find out the entries for Saturday’s Scottish Grand National meeting at Ayr. Willie Mullins will aim to cement his position at the top of the British trainers’ title by sending a strong squad of horses to Scotland. 

Tuesday 16th April

Newmarket’s three-day Craven meeting kicks off on Tuesday, with the feature race looking to be the 7f conditions stakes (3.30pm). The race features Group 3 runner-up Boiling Point, who will be aiming to make a winning start to the season, but could face a challenge from Godolphin’s Bold Style. 

Elsewhere, we have jumps racing at Ffos Las and Naas, plus an evening all-weather flat meeting at Newcastle. 

Wednesday 17th April

Day Two of the Craven Meeting at Newmarket could give us some clues towards the 1,000 Guineas in the Nell Gwyn Stakes (3.35pm). Godolphin’s Dance Sequence is unbeaten to date and looks set to go off as favourite, ahead of the likes of Matrika, Regal Jubilee and Alshinfarah. 

There’s further Group action on the card in the form of the Earl Of Sefton Stakes (3pm), where Charlie Appleby will bid to win the race for a third successive year, with Ottoman Fleet his sole representative this year. 

Over jumps, racing returns to Cheltenham Racecourse for the first time since the Festival, where In Excelsis Deo heads the betting for the feature Grade 2 Matt Hampson Foundation Silver Trophy Handicap Chase (2.40pm), on the back of his impressive effort in the Plate Handicap Chase last month. 

Away from Newmarket and Cheltenham, there’s action at Beverley in the afternoon, plus an all-weather card at Kempton in the evening. 

Thursday 18th April

The third and final day of the Craven meeting at Newmarket features the Group 3 Craven Stakes, won in recent years by the likes of Native Trail, Master Of The Seas and Masar. This year the likes of Native Approach, Alcantor and Cambridge will bid to add their name to the impressive list of winners. There’s also further Group action on the card with the Group 3 Abernant Stakes (3pm), which could feature Sprint Cup runner-up Shouldvebeenaring. 

Cheltenham plays host to a mares-only card, which could feature the likes of Dysart Enos and Golden Ace in the Listed Mares’ Novices’ Hurdle (3.50pm). There’s also the Grade 2 Mares’ Novices’ Limited Handicap Chase Final (3.15pm), which could see the return of Harry Fry’s Lady Adare, who has been off the racecourse since November last year. 

Further racing on Thursday comes from Clonmel, Chelmsford and Ripon. We will also find out the final field for Saturday’s Scottish Grand National, as declarations are announced for all of Saturday’s racing. 

Friday 19th April

The Scottish National card kicks off on Friday at Ayr, with a competitive-looking Handicap Chase (3.20pm) looking to be the pick of the action. It could be worth keeping an eye on Dan Skelton’s runners in the race, with the top trainer winning four of the last six renewals! 

The pick of the flat action comes from Newbury, with the 1m 2f Novice Stakes looking an interesting race to keep an eye on. Frankel colt Kalidasa will likely be a popular choice for punters, having won on debut in comfortable fashion. 

Elsewhere, there’s racing at Fontwell in the afternoon, whilst the evening action comes from Bath and Exeter. 

Saturday 20th April

The Scottish Grand National (3.35pm) takes centre stage on Saturday, which has added spice this year due to how close it is in the jumps trainer championship between Willie Mullins, Dan Skelton and Paul Nicholls. Willie Mullins’ runner Macdermott has seen considerable support in the betting since stablemate I Am Maximus won the Aintree Grand National last weekend and looks set to go off favourite for Saturday’s feature. 

At Newbury, the Greenham Stakes (2.45pm) has been won by the likes of Frankel, Kingman and Mohaather in recent years, so is certainly a race to keep an eye on for future stars! Prior to that race, there are a futher two Group 3 races on the card – the John Porter Stakes (1.30pm) and the Fred Darling Stakes (2.05pm). 

Further racing comes from Bangor, Brighton,  Limerick, Nottingham and Thirsk. 

Sunday 21st April

The pick of the action on Sunday comes from the Curragh, with the 5f maiden having been won by the likes of Porta Fortuna and Meditate in recent years, whilst there’s also the Listed Lester Piggott Gladness Stakes on the Irish card too. 

Back in the UK, the Sunday series returns with action at Musselburgh, whilst Wincanton hosts it season finale and Stratford plays host to a six-race card. Tramore completes the jumps action on Sunday over in Ireland.

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