What Time is the 2024 Grand National and Where Will It Take Place?

Grand National

It will be all change at the Grand National this year.

The most famous – or infamous, perhaps – steeplechase horse race on the planet has seen a series of format changes in 2024, which have been designed to make the renewal safer, fairer and more accessible to watch.

So here’s everything you need to know about the 2024 Grand National.

Who’s the Favorite for Grand National 2024?

Last year’s winner, Corach Rambler, was the early favorite in the Grand National 2024 betting , however after the release of the handicap weights – handing him a considerable increase on 2023 – he has since been eased out to +1200.

The horse race tips columns are instead focusing on the horses it deems to have been best treated by the handicapper – I Am Maximus (+1000) and Vanillier (+1000), who are considered to have been handed a light weight relative to their ability.

All horses in the Grand National carry a handicap in the form of a lead weight attached to the saddle. The ‘better’ the horse, e.g. its form, rating and perceived class, the heavier the weight it has to carry, in a bid to level the playing field.

The handicapper has also ditched an old unwritten rule that would compress the weights of the top horses, in a bid to persuade trainers and owners to enter classier horses into the race. So, the 2024 edition could be the ‘fairest’ and most exciting in years.

What Time is the Grand National?

Organizers of the Aintree showpiece have consistently altered its start time over the years, in a bid to maximize the number of viewers on a day – Saturday – in which people may be busy doing other things or playing/watching sport already.

But, for 2024, a new start time has been named – 16:00 GMT.

That change has been made so that the amount of time that the horses are kept in their stables is reduced, compared to the old time of 17:15 GMT. This earlier start should ensure that the conditions and the ground are at their best, too.

Where Does the Grand National Take Place?

The Grand National is held each year at the Aintree Racecourse in Merseyside, England.

It has hosted the race for more than a century, with its long track perfect for hosting the action – the horses run two laps of the course to complete the full four mile, two furlong trip.

Aintree is also the home of some of the most challenging fences in racing, with Becher’s Brook, The Chair and Canal Turn famed for their height, depth and steep landing areas.

How Many Runners are There in the Grand National?

For many years, the race featured 40 horses in total.

But in another change for the 2024 Grand National, the field size will be reduced to 34 – again in a bid to improve the safety and welfare of the horses.

The idea is that there will be fewer horses reaching the fences simultaneously, which in the past has led to falls, refusals and riders being unseated – particularly early in the race before the field has started to spread.

So it will be a new-look Grand National in 2024, but the same thrill and excitement of one of the greatest spectacles in racing will surely remain.