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Ted Walsh cautious about chances of Any Second Now in Grand National
Ted Walsh may be of the firm opinion that the weight of 11st 12lb handed to Any Second Now is beyond the capabilities of the 2022 runner-up, however the fact remains that the 11-year-old will still take his place in the Grand National in less than four weeks’ time on the back of a second victory in the Webster Cup.
Any Second Now triumphed in the 2021 Webster Cup in impressive fashion prior to coming in third behind Minella Times in the Grand National that same year. In the latest renewal of the former contest, under the guidance of Denis O’Regan, he was utterly decisive as he soared past Velvet Elvis after the final fence to win by seven lengths. On the back of this, his odds for the Grand National were shortened from a general 20/1 to 16/1.
Walsh is more than satisfied as to where he has this strong stayer right now, however he is still being realistic about his chances in the National whilst lugging around topweight.
He said: “He did it nicely and didn’t do any more than he had to. Denis was very happy with him. He popped away nicely, got under the last a bit, but when he grabbed hold of him after the last he quickened up well.
“I’m happy with him now. Any time he has gone to Aintree he has gone with a win, in this race twice and the Bobbyjo last year. He’s been a model of consistency. I’m glad they got this meeting on. It’s a month to Aintree now and that should be grand.
“He has a big task at Aintree. He is up 8lb from last year. He wasn’t unlucky last year, a horse on the improve beat him. He will need absolutely everything to fall right for him and for a few of the fancied ones to run into trouble. But it’s great to have him.”
He added: “He loves it around here. It’s seven years since he won his maiden hurdle here at 66-1 for Ian McCarthy, he’s been a very sound horse and he never lets you down. From two miles to four miles on every type of ground. Where would you get a horse like that?”