Randox Grand National 2024: Everything we know so far
3 weeks ago
For that one weekend, it feels like all eyes on Liverpool as we host one of the biggest sporting events seen anywhere in the world.
Get your outfit planned and your breakfast booking sorted because it’s not long until Aintree Racecourse is absolutely buzzing again for the Randox Grand National 2024.
If you’re a race fan – or even if you just love getting dressed up and having a fabulous day out – it’s an incredible experience like no other.
Here’s everything we know so far about the Randox Grand National 2024 …
When is it?
This year’s Grand National festival is over three days, Thursday April 11 is Opening Day, Friday April 12 is Ladies Day and Saturday April 13 is Grand National Day.
What’s happening on each day?
Thursday, the Opening Day, is traditionally a great way to build up to the big weekend – it’s still as glam, just with a slightly more laidback feel and alongside a full race card from 1.45pm to 5.15pm there’s live music and entertainment so it’s always a fun one.
Friday is Ladies Day which means it’s full-on fashion all the way and the chance to win some amazing prizes with The Style Award. Plus more racing (like Thursday, the first race is 1.45pm and last one 5.15pm) and more entertainment of course.
Then it’s Saturday and (drumroll) time for the main event, the world’s most prestigious steeplechase. Gates open at 10am and the first race is 1.20pm so plenty of time to settle in and crack open the prosecco! The Grand National itself is at 4pm and the last race is 5.35pm.
How to get tickets
When it comes to getting tickets, the quicker the better if you want to get your pick of spots on the course because demand is already high and stands and packages sell out fast. Tickets are all available through the Jockey Club website here. Tickets for the Opening Day start from £35 for adults for the Festival Zone, and for Ladies Day they start at £55. For Grand National Day, lots of stands are already sold out, but you can still get tickets for the Festival Zone (£85) and The Embankment (£45) and some premium hospitality packages.
What will be different this year?
The first thing fans of the National will notice is the start time for the big race has changed for 2024. It has been brought forward from 5.15pm to 4pm to improve the likelihood of good ground. The number of runners has also been reduced from 40 to 34 and the first fence moved closer to the starting point to slow down the early stages of the race. These changes are all part of what The Jockey Club describes as its “continued focus to ensure the best possible welfare conditions for racehorses and jockeys.”
Racegoers heading to the Red Rum Garden for the live entertainment will notice some changes too. 60% more wet weather cover has been added in case of downpours, the bar space has been extended and a new DJ platform raised up so everyone gets the same atmosphere whether you’re at the front or back!
What about the Style Award?
The Style Award is always huge and this year’s going to be no exception – all the fantastically dressed ladies, and men, will be lining up on Friday to see who walks away with the prize package and The Guide will be helping to choose the winner again so look out for more details as we count down to that.
Don’t forget, it’s easy to get there
With so many thousands of racegoers heading to Aintree over the weekend, you need to make getting there – and getting home with your winnings – as simple as possible. That’s where Merseyrail saves the day because Aintree station is just a 2-minute walk across the road from the racecourse and there’ll be extra trains running to make sure it all goes smoothly. They don’t even mind if you take your shoes off and travel in flipflops on the way back into town!
And book your breakfast
Grand National race day breakfasts are all part of the tradition and there are lots already announced for 2024 including Baby E Coffee, Albert’s Schloss, and a new one at St. George’s Hall which is super-handy for Lime Street and Central stations. Lock & Key on Duke Street has got race day brunches on all three days, and The Bentley has a champagne breakfast with live entertainment on Saturday.