What Time Does The 2023 Grand National Start?
One race stands out above all others and that is the Grand National. Held every April at Aintree Racecourse, the Grand National is the pinnacle of the jumps season and is watched by over 600 million around the world.
Each year, we get asked a lot of questions about the Grand National, but two of the biggest are: what day is it on, and what time does it start?
So the fast and easy answer is the Grand National 2023 will be on Saturday, April 15th 2023. It will start at 5.15pm and will be live on UK tv on ITV.
As you would expect from such a huge race, the coverage for the Grand National extends way beyond the race itself.
Given that it is on the third and final day of the festival at Aintree, the build-up begins mid-week.
However, on the day of the race, it’s non-stop Grand National all day long. And that’s despite plenty of races scheduled ahead of it.
2023 Grand National Time
For years broadcasters have been trying to optimise the time that the Grand National starts. Way back when the BBC had the rights to air the race, it used to start at 3pm.
That however, was at a time when most of us didn’t have to work on a Saturday, so everybody had the opportunity to watch it.
By 1999 the race was starting at 3.45pm and that lasted until 2005 when once again the time changed to 4.10pm.
Still not happy; the powers that be moved the start time to 4.15pm the following year, and it stayed that way until 2016.
Figuring that more people would be home from work, and so viewing figures would increase, the race was pushed out again to 5.15pm.
So it’s been that way for a few years now, and combined with the rights going to ITV, the audience has indeed seen a massive boost.
What Channel Is The Grand National On?
ITV recently announced that it has extended its deal to air the Grand National until 2023. But the history behind the race and its broadcasting is very, very interesting.
Despite the race being held every year since the late 1800s, it was only first aired on radio in 1927. It stayed that way until 1960 when the BBC first aired it on tv.
The BBC continued broadcasting the Grand National for over 50 years before the rights went to Channel 4 in 2013.
Despite their best attempts, Channel 4 just couldn’t match the BBC and so in 2017, ITV took on the responsibility of airing the world’s greatest steeplechase.
With the racing team led by Ed Chamberlain, each year since has seen the figures growing. 2020 saw new records for those who tuned in to watch Royal Ascot and the Epsom Derby, despite the meetings taking place behind closed doors.
That of course meant that ITV was very keen to keep hold of the racing, and so after quite lengthy negotiations, they secured a new deal that guarantees coverage until 2023.
Is The BBC Showing The Grand National 2023?
Unfortunately, the Grand National will not be covered by the BBC in 2023. The rights to air the racing is exclusive to iTV, and as such, that is the only channel you can watch the race.
BBC had the rights to show horseracing on a Saturday for more than 60 years. Their partnership with the Grand National lasted for more than 50 years.
But when the time came to strike another deal, they were outbid by Channel 4 in a deal understood to be worth more than £20 million.
At the time, and with a limited sports budget, the BBC opted to pay for exclusive coverage of Wimbledon and the Six Nations instead.
Who Will Win The 2023 Grand National?
If we knew the answer to that we would be millionaires! It’s such a long and complicated race that picking a winner is incredibly difficult.
That said, there are tips available closer to the race. There are also plenty of general trends that you can follow to help you whittle down the potential winners.
That all makes sense when it comes to horse racing, however, the Grand National is often as much about luck as anything else. Outsiders can run an amazing race and favourites can stumble at the first fence.
In terms of odds, the bookmakers are generally a good guide. Sure, they need to make money, so the odds may not be the most attractive for the best horses, but if a horse is 100/1 there’s a good reason.
Of course they can still win, but it’s very unlikely. Better to put an each-way bet on and hope they place so you get some money back!
Noble Yeats will be back in 2023 hoping for a repeat performance. Can he do it? He’s young, on form, and defied all expectations last year. But without Sam Waley-Cohen on board, it could go either way.
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