Sun, Apr 11, 2010 - Page 19 News List

Bookmakers fear Nina plunge in Grand National

REUTERS , AINTREE, ENGLAND

A race-goer sits among the trash during the second day of the Grand National at Aintree Racecourse in Liverpool, England, on Friday.

PHOTO: REUTERS WARNING: EXCESSIVE CONSUMPTION OF ALCOHOL CAN DAM

Bookmakers are predicting a £5 million (US$7.65 million) Grand National plunge on Character Building as Nina Carberry was to bid to become the first female jockey to win the famous steeplechase yesterday.

The 25-year-old Irish amateur was a late call up to ride the 16-1 chance, trained by John Quinn, after the horse was sold to new owners this week.

“The time has come about where there is equality in this sport and she rides with such strength that she has the respect of her peers,” William Hill spokesman David Hood said. “She is an extraordinary horsewoman, and we reckon at least 5 million pounds of the public’s money could be resting on her shoulders.”

“She also has that novelty factor for people who do not normally bet on the Grand National. I don’t think she’ll go off favorite, but she’ll go off second or third-favorite,” Hood said.

Big Fella Thanks is 10-1 favorite to give trainer Paul Nicholls a first Grand National triumph while last year’s shock 100-1 winner Mon Mome is a 12-1 chance to follow up.

About £100 million will be gambled across Britain on the race.

Carberry, who has chalked up more than 150 winners since her first in 2001, hails from a famous racing family.

Nina’s father, Tommy, rode L’Escargot to victory in the 1975 National and older brother Paul was successful in 1999 on Bobbyjo, trained by Carberry senior.

Paul Carberry will partner King Johns Castle, a 25-1 chance, in the showpiece race, which starts at 1515.

Nina Carberry has had one previous National ride in 2006 when she completed the course, but finished ninth and last on Forest Gunner.

Charlotte Brew was the first female jockey to ride in the National in 1977, but failed to complete the course. Rosemary Henderson (fifth on Fiddlers Pike in 1984) and Carrie Ford (fifth on Forest Gunner in 2005) have fared best since then.

This story has been viewed 1687 times.

Comments will be moderated. Keep comments relevant to the article. Remarks containing abusive and obscene language, personal attacks of any kind or promotion will be removed and the user banned. Final decision will be at the discretion of the Taipei Times.

TOP top