Grand National

The Beginner’s Guide to Watching the 2017 Grand National

The Grand National, the nation’s biggest steeplechase event, is just around the corner. An estimated 600 million people will be tuning in from around the world to see the best horses compete in the event.

The event will take place on April 8th and will last for three days.

There are several ways you can follow the excitement. The best way, of course, is by visiting the Aintree racetrack, since there are plenty of side events and other great activities to engage. In this article, we’re going to take a look at how you can do that as well as some other alternatives of watching this year’s Grand National.

Live Events

Aintree is about 4 hours away from London. You can take the M40 and the M6 to get there if you plan on driving to the racetrack yourself. Be sure to prepare for the extra traffic, since a lot of people will be travelling there as well.

What’s important is securing tickets for the events you want to watch. According to Aintree’s own website, the Festival Zone and West Tip Seats are all sold out, but you can still pick up a few tickets for the Steeplechase Enclosure.

Other sources of tickets may also still have tickets available for select events, since a lot of people are cancelling their trips to the course. Be sure to consider the hospitality packages from the course as well, since they allow you to watch the best events in the utmost comfort.

Preparing for the Event

Another important thing to note is the dress code. If this is your first time watching the Grand National live, you may be tempted to wear an old, comfortable pair of jeans and a T-shirt. There is no official dress code at Aintree, but you can still be denied entry if you’re not dressed properly for the event.

Try to wear something semi-formal but comfortable. A comfortable shirt paired with a pair of dark denim or chino pants and a semi-formal jacket will do. This combination will also enable you to stay comfortable should the weather get colder during the event.

Avoid carrying items that you don’t really need, especially those that fall into the ‘dangerous’ category. It’s best to leave bigger electronics such as your laptop at home too. Last but not least, pack a couple of bottles of water and your daily essentials.

Watching from Home

While watching the event live at Aintree is the best way to go, not all of you will have the opportunity to be at the centre of the excitement this year. Worry not, because there are some other options that will allow you to enjoy the best events from this year’s Grand National from the comfort of your home.

A number of websites and streaming services are streaming the event live, so those who are placing a bet can still follow the events as they progress, and get excellent insight from betting tips. This year also marks the first time ITV takes charge of broadcasting the steeplechase instead of BBC and CH4. The TV station has already said that it will do an extensive coverage of the whole Aintree Festival, which means races and other side events will be well covered this year. More importantly, the whole event can be watched in HD. You will be able to follow the races without a problem.

These are some of the ways you can watch this year’s Grand National. It will be a spectacular event nonetheless, so be sure to plan your trip to Aintree or check out which London pubs will be showing the event live.

Featured image courtesy of Stacey MacNaught, with thanks

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