Tony McCoy reveals his top tip for the Virtual Grand National 2020


All profits from bets taken for Saturday’s race will go to the NHS (Picture: Getty)

Former Champion Jockey Sir Tony McCoy has revealed his pick to win the Virtual Grand National 2020 and called on fans to get behind Saturday’s race after the usual event at Aintree was called off.

The coronavirus pandemic has caused havoc with the sporting calendar, forcing the biggest horse race of the year – which has been going since 1836 – to be cancelled for the first time since World War II.

Instead, ITV will air a virtual, computer-simulated Grand National at 5pm using the 40 runners who had been expected to race in the real event – with all profits from bets going to the NHS.

Tiger Roll won the last two Nationals and could have equalled Red Rum’s record (Picture: Getty)

McCoy, who finally won the race aboard Don’t Push It in 2010, believes it is an excellent idea and is backing reigning champion Tiger Roll to make it three in a row – though admits he would have gone for another horse had the event proper gone ahead.

‘For those people that are working in the NHS, doing the work they are at the moment, it must be horrific, what they are seeing at times,’ said McCoy.

‘I’d have gone for Burrows Saint in the real one. I just thought having won the Irish Grand National last year he’d have plenty going for him.

‘If we were being realistic I’d say Burrows Saint, but a better story would be Tiger Roll winning.

‘I’d like Tiger Roll to win the Virtual Grand National. I hope none of them get bad rides!

McCoy fancied Burrows Saint to win the ‘real’ Grand National (Picture: Getty)

‘Most of all it’s a great cause — you wouldn’t expect anything else — but it’s good of the bookmakers to be doing it.’

The Virtual Grand National has been run previously to try and predict the winner of the actual race, with recent form and stamina key parts of the algorithm, though Tiger Roll was well beaten in his last outing in the Cross Country Chase at Cheltenham.

MORE: Grand National 2020 sweepstake kit: Download your guide

MORE: Can you bet on the virtual Grand National and who are the runners?

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