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2016 Grand National runner profile: Holywell

| 09.04.2016

David Metcalf | April 6, 2016

Coral’s horse racing experts profile all 40 entrants in the 2016 Crabbie’s Grand National, the most prestigious steeplechase of the National Hunt season.


Age: 9
Weight: 10st 12lb

Owner: Gay Smith

Grand National Record:
2014 Twirling Magnet (Fell 1st)

Trainer: Jonjo O’Neill

Race horse trainer JONJO O'NEILL.

Grand National Record:
2003 Carbury Cross (7th)
2004 Clan Royal (2nd), Joss Naylor (PU 19th)
2005 Simply Gifted (3rd), Shamawan (21st), Native Emperor (UR 9th), Clan Royal (CO 22nd)
2006 Clan Royal (3rd), Risk Accessor (5th)
2007 Clan Royal (11th)
2008 Bob Hall (PU 19th), Butler’s Cabin (FELL 22nd)
2009 Butler’s Cabin (7th), Reveillez (BD 3rd), Can’t Buy Time (FELL 18th)
2010 DON’T PUSH IT (WON), Can’t Buy Time (FELL 8th)
2011 Don’t Push It (3rd), Quolibet (UR 11th), Can’t Buy Time (FELL 18th)
2012 Sunnyhillboy (2nd), Synchronised (FELL 6th), Arbor Supreme (UR 10th)
2013 Lost Glory (PU 17th), Sunnyhillboy (UR 30th)
2014 Twirling Magnet (FELL 1st), Burton Port (UR 2nd)
2015 Shutthefrontdoor (5th)

Jockey: Richie McClernon

Grand National Record:
2010 Can’t Buy Time (FELL 8th)
2011 Can Buy Time (FELL 18th)
2012 Sunnyhillboy (2nd)
2013 Sunnyhillboy (UR 30th)
2014 Twirling Magnet (FELL 1st)
2015 Court By Surprise (PU 18th)




Holywell was out of sorts this season before finishing second under top-weight in the Grade 3 Ultima Handicap Chase at the Cheltenham Festival on March 15th.

However, is a class act on his day as his fourth to Coneygree in the 2015 Cheltenham Gold Cup and then third in the Grade 1 Bowl at this venue show.

The gelding is also a two-time winner at the Cheltenham Festival, capturing the Listed Pertemps Final over hurdles in 2013 and the Ultima Handicap Chase in 2014.

Holywell also ended the 2013/14 season as the highest-rated novice chaser in England or Ireland after a 10-length demolition of this year’s Cheltenham Gold Cup winner Don Cossack in the Grade 1 Mildmay Novices’ Chase at Aintree.

Jumps Race record

Holywell has won or been placed in 75 per cent of his races. He has become well-treated in the weights and has an excellent record in the Spring.

Starts: 25
Wins: 7
2nd: 7
3rd: 4
Career win and place prize money: £311,565


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David Metcalf

A lifelong Manchester United supporter, David has over 25 years’ experience in the media industry having worked for regional and national newspapers. He is a huge horse racing, football and greyhound fan and has done interviews on various radio and TV stations, including talkSPORT and Sky Sports, whilst working as a PR front man for a betting firm. David has also written for most of the top Premier League football fan websites, and produced a Cheltenham Festival guide with former eight-times champion national hunt jockey Peter Scudamore, MBE, after helping him to set up a syndicate for his trainer son Michael.