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2017 Aintree Festival tips - Insider tips for the Mersey Novices' Hurdle at 2:25pm

Finian's Oscar winning the Grade 1 Towton Novices' Hurdle at Sandown.

Our expert brings you insider tips for the Mersey Novices' Hurdle, the first Grade 1 contests on Grand National day at Aintree.

Many of these are dipping a first hoof into pattern race company having proved prolific in less-exalted novice events but Messire Des Obeaux is an exception. He won the Grade 1 Challow Hurdle in December and was a close-up third in the Neptune Investment at Cheltenham, though has been on the go for a while.

FINIAN’S OSCAR was forced to miss Cheltenham after suffering a minor setback but he looks the one to beat in this if back fighting fit. Colin Tizzard’s unbeaten five-year-old won the Tolworth Hurdle at Sandown in January and holds promising maiden Captain Forez and Lough Derg Spirit on collateral form.

La Bague Au Roi found the company too hot in the Mares' Hurdle at Cheltenham and now has a bit to prove but Brio Conti and Le Breuil have both been making strides lately, though whether they are at the level required for this just yet will be revealed today.


Countdown to Grand National

The 2018 Grand National takes place on Saturday 14th April and we'll have live coverage of the meeting on here and on Twitter.

Join millions of fans preparing to celebrate the build up to the world's most famous race - the Aintree Grand National.


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2017 Aintree Festival tips - Insider tips for the Mersey Novices' Hurdle at 2:25pm

Our expert brings you insider tips for the Mersey Novices' Hurdle, the first Grade 1 contests on Grand National day at Aintree.

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