Great Britain

Virtual Grand National to return to screens this year – and it could predict the winner of the real thing

The Sun

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THE Virtual Grand National is to return to screens this year - and it could predict the winner of the real thing.

Last year's Aintree showpiece was cancelled due to Covid.

But still racing fans and punters everywhere were treated to a thrilling virtual race, won by Potters Corner.

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The computer-generated contest will be back this year on Friday April 9 at 8pm on ITV 4 before being screened again on ITV 1 at 1pm the following day.

Given its ability to predict how the actual race will be run, viewers are advised to pay close attention.

Cause Of Causes won the virtual race in 2017 before finishing second in the real thing at decent odds of 16-1.

The JP McManus-owned runner ended up four-and-a-half lengths adrift of One For Arthur.

The 2018 virtual race was won by Tiger Roll, who of course claimed the real thing that same year and in 2019.

The Willie Mullins-trained Rathvinden won in 2019 before finishing third at 8-1 in the same year.

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Cloth Cap is the huge favourite this year and is already as short as 7-2.

However, maybe the latest CGI technology from Inspired Entertainment - as well as algorithms which take into account form and going preferences - could sway punter opinion.

Whatever happens, here's all you need to know for the world's most famous race.

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