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Grand Opening Day

Bet on Grand Opening Day at Aintree With William Hill

Thursday 6th April

Bet on Grand National Opening Day with William Hill

Grand National Opening Day is the first day of the Grand National Festival held at Aintree Racecourse, near Liverpool. It will fall on 12th April 2018, followed by Ladies’ Day (13TH April, Day 2) and Grand National Day (14th April, Day 3). The festival has sprung up around the Grand National race, which is arguably the world’s most famous horse race. However, the festival has many other top races, including the Grade 1 Aintree Hurdle and Juvenile Hurdle, both of which take place on Day 1. There are seven races in total on Grand National Opening Day, with the likes of Faugheen and Buveur D’Air expected to feature in the marquee race - the Aintree Hurdle. The first race of Grand National Opening Day, the Manifesto Novices’ Chase, will go off at 13:40pm on 12th April.

2018 Grand National Opening Day Betting Guide

The Grand National Festival, which was formerly sponsored by Crabbie’s, goes hand in hand with the Cheltenham Festival. Many of the runners and riders will have run at Cheltenham a few weeks beforehand. For example, the Aintree Hurdle (15:25pm) often has a similar field to the Champion Hurdle. Buveur D’Air won both those races last year and should be among the favourites to win again in 2018.

Another important Opening Day race, the Betway Bowl, will feature several of the top chasers in horse racing. Previous winners include Silviniaco Conti and Cue Card, both of whom won the King George VI Chase. In total, four of the seven races on Grand National Opening Day are Grade 1 races. Put simply, this means that a quality field of runners and riders is guaranteed, with most able to pull a win out of the bag. However, keep an eye on the form of these horses in big events like the Cheltenham and Winter Festivals to get an indication of your selection’s big race temperament.

Where to Bet on Grand National Opening Day?

William Hill offers betting on every race of Grand National Opening Day, as well as every other race in the 2018 Aintree Festival. You will top odds for each runner, as well as tips, results and the latest news around the Aintree races. A racecard is provided for each race, giving you information on your selection’s form, as well as trainer and jockey details. You can place your Grand National bets online using your mobile, tablet or desktop. Ante post betting for the 2018 Grand National race is available now, with generous odds offered for all predicted runners.

Grand National Opening Day Races and Highlights



2017 Winner:

Good to Know:

Manifesto Novices Chase


Flying Angel

The Race is named after Manifesto, a two-time Grand National winner (1897 and 1899).

Anniversary 4-Y-Old Juvenile Hurdle


Defi Du Seuil

Last year's winner, Defi Du Seuil, has won every competitive race in his career so far.

Betway Bowl


Tea For Two

Last year's winning jockey, Lizzie Kelly, was the first ever female winner of the race.

Aintree Hurdle


Buveur D'Air

Ruby Walsh has won this race five times, most recently on Annie Power in 2016.

Grand National Opening Day - 2017 Results & Winners

Grand National Opening Day 2017 began with a comprehensive victory for Noel Fehily on Flying Angel in the Manifesto Novices’ Chase. The result was never really in doubt as Flying Angel took the lead with five to jump, leaving betting favourite Top Notch to settle for third. The unbeaten Defi Du Seuil landed the first of two big wins of the day for jockey Barry Geraghty in the Grade 1 Juvenile Hurdle. Geraghty also took the Aintree Hurdle on Buveur D’Air. The biggest surprise of the day came in the Betway Bowl, with Lizzie Kelly riding Tea For Two to victory over a quality field that included Cue Card, Silviniaco Conti and Bristol de Mai. Opening Day 2017 was rounded off with wins for Dineur (Foxhunters Chase), Double W’s (Red Rum Handicap) and Dame Rose (Mares’ Flat Race).



Winning Jockey

Winning Trainer:

Manifesto Novices Chase

Flying Angel

Noel Fehily

Nigel Twiston-Davies

Anniversary 4-Y-Old Juvenile Hurdle

Defi Du Seuil

Barry Geraghty

Phillip Hobbs

Betway Bowl

Tea For Two

Lizzie Kelly

Nick Williams

Aintree Hurdle

Buveur D'Air

Barry Geraghty

Nicky Henderson

Foxhunters Chase


James King

Mickey Bowen

Red Rum Handicap Chase

Double W's

Brian Hughes

Malcolm Jefferson

Aintree Mares Flat Race

Dame Rose

Alain Cawley

Richard Hobson

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