Five time Cheltenham Festival winner TIGER ROLL is set for his last ever race as he runs in the Glenfarclas Cross Country Chase.
The duel Grand National winner is set to retire following the Festival and will not go to Aintree in a bid to become a triple Grand National champion.
Tiger Roll owner, Michael O’Leary, has declared that the superstar horse will retire after the Cheltenham Festival. The five-time Festival winner is set to run in the Cross Country on the Wednesday of Cheltenham racing week.
Despite being a fan favourite and duel Grand National winner, O’Leary has categorically decided that he will not run at Aintree in April. This is because the British Horseracing Authority (BHA) decided to give Tiger Roll a rating of 161. The owner described this as an ‘idiotic’ and ‘absurd’ handicap rating for the horse.
Tiger Roll will run in the Glenfarclas Cross Country Chase at Cheltenham
Despite the ongoing controversy regarding Tiger Roll and the BHA handicap rating ahead of the Grand National, he will run at the Cheltenham Festival in March.
‘The Tiger’ will make his way up the famous Cheltenham hill for the last time in a bid to become a four time Cross Country champion. The 12-year-old currently sits as the bookmakers favourite, and can be backed at a price of 6/4 with William Hill.
He has won the race three times already, in the 2018, 2019 and 2021 Cheltenham Festival respectively. Should he triumph at Cheltenham in a couple weeks time, it would be Tiger Roll’s sixth win at the famous Festival and would be a fitting way to end his successful career.
However, whether the Gordon Elliott trained horse wins or not at Cheltenham, it is still extremely disappointing for racing fans that he won’t feature in the Grand National.
Tiger Roll will not take part in the Grand National at Aintree
Racing fans are extremely disappointed that the Aintree superstar will retire after his outing at Cheltenham. This is because the BHA gave Tiger Roll a rating of 161 for the featured Aintree race, which owner Michael O’Leary has described as ‘idiotic’ and ‘absurd’.
Connections have been unhappy with the handicap marks he has been given in Britain in recent years. If he had have been given a rating of 150 with a 5lb premium, giving him a race rating of 155 for the Grand National, O’Leary would have been happy for him to run in the famous race.
Speaking on the Racing Debate on Sunday, owner O’Leary added his view that fans are being robbed of a great Aintree spectacle and a huge opportunity has been ‘ruined’ by the British handicappers.
“This handicapper has now prevented the most popular horse in training running in the Grand National two years in a row. He has ruined a huge promotional opportunity that’s available to Aintree and the Grand National by having Tiger Roll trying to emulate Red Rum.
“You cannot defy age. He will not be in the Grand National by the time he runs in the cross country – he’s coming out at the next forfeit stage,” O’Leary said.
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In what is set to be Tiger Roll’s last ever race before retirement, William Hill are offering you a price of 6/4 for ‘The Tiger’ to get his sixth Festival win in a long and extremely successful career.
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