Two years ago, the John Wade-owned and trained Always Right went very close to lifting the Coral Scottish Grand National, eventually going under by just a length to Beshabar in a memorable three-way finish to the feature event of the Scottish jumps season.
Absent from last year’s renewal, the gelded son of Right Win looks set to run a very big race back at Ayr on April 20, having proved himself in top form going into the contest with a fine win at Kelso last time out. He battled on bravely to beat Garleton by a head in the listed Premier Chase at the Borders track and sprang a 20/1 surprise on punters in the process.
After winning on his seasonal bow last term, things went all wrong for Always Right, pulling up in successive outings in Grade 3 company then being in the process of running a big race at Aintree in the 2012 John Smith’s Grand National when unseating his rider at The Chair while travelling strongly in fourth place.
His handicap rating dropped from a high of 148 to 140 after a lack-lustre effort on his first outing of this term, but clearly Wade’s 11-year-old is once again back in the groove judged on his brave win at Kelso last time out.
Set to run off a mark just a pound higher than in 2011, Always Right is a top-priced 10/1 second-favourite in the Scottish National odds for the four-mile-one-furlong affair, and if encountering a decent surface looks certain to give a very good account of himself.
Rival d’Estruval remains the current Scottish National betting market leader at 8/1, while Aintree hero Aurora’s Encore is still a possible runner at Ayr and is priced up at 12/1 to complete a remarkable double for Sue Smith and Ryan Mania.