Grand Na­tional to be run at 5.15pm

Daily Mail - - Davis Cup – The Aftermath - By MARCUS TOWNEND Rac­ing Cor­re­spon­dent

THE Grand Na­tional will be put back to 5.15pm next year, the lat­est ever start time for the big­gest horse race of them all. Since 2006, the Na­tional has been staged at 4.15pm but or­gan­is­ers Ain­tree are hop­ing a tea-time slot on April 9 will at­tract a big­ger tele­vi­sion au­di­ence. This year a peak fig­ure of 8.8mil­lion watched the race, broad­cast for the third time on Chan­nel 4. That was up on 2014 but sig­nif­i­cantly lower than the 11m who watched in 2012, the last time it was on the BBC. Con­fir­ma­tion of the move is ex­pected at the Grand Na­tional launch to­day at the Lam­bourn sta­ble of Oliver Sher­wood, trainer of this year’s win­ner Many Clouds. Ain­tree chief John Baker hinted yes­ter­day at a big an­nounce­ment but de­nied spon­sors Crab­bie’s have de­cided not to re­new their three-year deal, which ends in 2016. Ain­tree is part of the Jockey Club race­course group, which is also con­sid­er­ing a tea-time slot for the Derby.

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