The 2020 Grand National has been called off because of the coronavirus pandemic.
But ITV will televise a virtual Grand National with forty runners who would have been most likely to line up, using CGI technology and special algorithms.
Among the runners are this year’s favourite Tiger Roll, who if he had won would have joined the legendary Red Rum on a trio of victories.
ITV’s coverage gets underway at 5pm on ITV and ITV HD, where Nick Luck is joined by former champion jockey Richard Pitman and other guests to watch as 40 horses and riders take to the virtual turf.
The special programme will also pit Red Rum and Tiger Roll against each other in a Race of Champions, alongside 38 other winners who will race over a computer-generated recreation of the real Aintree jumps and famous course.
Rob McLoughlin, Executive producer of the Race, said: “We use the latest CGI technology and algorithms and were ready to go ahead as a forerunner to the big race, but now we want to cheer the nation up and ask the computer if history could have been made.”
Virtual Grand National runners and riders
Tiger Roll – Davy Russell
Bristol De Mai – Daryl Jacob
Aso – Charlie Deutsch
Elegant Escape – Jonjo O’Neill Jr.
Anibale Fly – Barry Geraghty
Top Ville Ben – Tom Dowson
Beware The Bear – Jerry McGrath
Peregrine Run – Kevin Sexton
Jett – Sam Waley-Cohen
Alpha Des Obeaux – Richard Johnson
Total Recall – Paul Townend
The Storyteller – Keith Donoghue
Magic Of Light – Robbie Power
Talkischeap – Tom Cannon
Yala Enki – Bryony Frost
Ballyoptic – Sam Twiston-Davies
Burrows Saint – Rachael Blackmore
Definitly Red – Brian Hughes
Sub Lieutenant – JJ Slevin
Ok Corral – Derek O’Connor
Tout Est Permis – Sean Flanagan
Vintage Clouds – Danny Cook
Crievehill – Tom Bellamy
Lake View Lad – Henry Brooke
Jury Duty – Mark Enright
Pleasant Company – David Mullins
Acapella Bourgeois – Danny Mullins
Shattered Love – Lisa O’Neill
Any Second Now – Mark Walsh
Potters Corner – Jack Tudor
Dounikos – Luke Dempsey
Kildisart – Nico de Boinville
Death Duty – Gavin Brouder
Ramses De Teillee – Tom Scudamore
Valtor – James Bowen
Saint Xavier – David Maxwell
Warriors Tale – Harry Cobden
Double Shuffle – Jonathan Burke
Kimberlite Candy – Richie McLernon
Walk In The Mill – James Best
The race will also be streamed live via the ITV Hub from 5pm.
ITV will broadcast five days of top class horse racing this week as Royal Ascot 2020 takes place. The pandemic rules out the presence of The Queen and fans attending the course this year, and ITV’s coverage will be produced… Read more
The 2020 Cheltenham Festival takes place this week (10 to 13 March) with live television coverage on ITV. The channel’s coverage features live footage of five races on each of the four days of the festival, going behind the scenes… Read more
Six Nations 2020 will continue this weekend as England host Wales at Twickenham. This is the teams’ penultimate match of the championship, and will be shown live on ITV England kept their title hopes alive with a 24-12 victory over… Read more