In terms of popular appea- “ie Scottish Grand National ouple of furlongs short of the even. an a month earlier at Aintree.

Although Ayr Racecourse - the venue for this year’s running of the event on Saturday 20 April - provides a fair test for any horse and iockey combination, the fences they have to negociate are lust fences. There are no Scottish equivalents of Beecher’s Brook, Canal Turn or The Chair to worry the runners and riders. And it isn’t a race that gets once-a-year punters out of the door and round to the bookies to I v on that

50p each-way bet on Stzmx’ icked because they like the it

Still, the Scottish Gr' an lay claim to a little r whole lot of history o . first run as a three-mi. .t Bogside 129 years ago, .. -. Duke .

of Hamilton snagged £100 as the I owner of the inaugral winner, The Elk. l

These days, the Grade Three race is run over three miles and a furlong, on ,

one of Britain’s top courses. And the

winning owner of the recently renamed Stakis Casinos Scottish

Grand National can now expect to take

home a fat slice of the £65,000 prize offered, as well as a specially commissioned crystal cup. More than that, the winning trainer will follow in the footsteps of the most illustrious names in steeplechasing.

The 1995 winner, Willsford, was trained by the First Lady of steeplechasing, Jenny Pitman. She

came into the race having taken her

second Aintree National only a month before with Royal Athlete and became the first trainer in 21 years to do the double. flow Pitman is set to take the race two years in a row, and make Willsford only the third horse to win the Scottish Grand National in consecutive seasons. (John Richardson)

Scottish Grand National, A yr Racecourse, Sat 20 Apr, 4.05pm.

Events are listed alphabetically by sport. then by day. Fixtures are correct at time of publication, but may be affected by weather. Sports listings compiled by Brian Donaldson.


I Scottish Claymores v Barcelona Dragons MurTayfield Stadium. Edinburgh. A 3pm kick-off for Gavin Hastings's home debut for the Claymores. but the party fun and live music begins at noon in the backfield. Further information from Scottish Clayniores on ()I3I 220 I3 l-i. See feature.

Sunday 28

I Scottish Claymores v Amsterdam Admirals Murrayfield Stadium. Edinburgh. 3pm kick off: entertainment from noon. Details from Scottish Claymores on ()131 220 I314. See feature.

BADMINTON Saturday 20

I Bank of Scotland Open Junior Under- 11 John Wright Centre. liast Kilbride. Girls and boys singles start at Illam. with doubles getting underway at 2pm. For more information call Mrs Hopkins on ()l698 882S3l.

Tuesday 30

I Benson 8. Hedges Cup Lochs‘ide Park. l"orfar. I lam. Scotland take on Northants in their first Btkzll home game this season. See Hit list.

CYCLING Sunday 21

I Scottish Olympic Time Trial Meldon Circuit. I’eebles. l()am. Around |()I) cyclists are expected to compete. Further details from the Scottiin Cyclists l'nion on ()l3l 652 ()l87.

FOOTBALL Saturday 20


I Aberdeen V Hearts Pittodrie Stadium. Pittodrie Street. Aberdeen. 3pm.

I Celtic V Falkirk Celtic Park. Kerrydale Street. Glasgow. 3pm.

I Hibs V Raith Rovers liaster Road Stadium. Albion Road. Edinburgh. 3pm. I Kilmarnock v Partick Thistle Rugby Park. Rugby Road. Kilmarnock. 3pm.

I Motherwell v Rangers Hr Park. liirpark Street. Motherwell. 3pm.


I Dundee v Clydebank l)en.s Park. Sandeman Street. Dundee. 3pm.

I Ounfennline v Oumbarton tiusi lind Park. Halbeath Road. Dunfermline. 3pm. I Hamilton v Dundee United Douglas Park. Douglas Park Lane. llatnilton. 3pm I MOTION V St Johnstone Cappielow Park. Sinclair Street. Greenock. 3pm.

I St Mirren V Airdrie St Mirren l’ark. Love Street. Paisley. 3pm.

Saturday 27


I Falkirk V Hibs Brockville l’ark. llopc Street. Falkirk. 3pm.

I Hearts v Kilmarnock 'l'ynecas‘tle l’ark. Gorgie Road. Edinburgh. 3pm.

I Partick Thistle v Celtic I-‘irhill Park. I‘irhill Road. Glasgow. 3pm.

I Raith Rovers v Motherwell Slat‘ks‘ l’ark. Pratt Street. Kirkcaldy. 3pm.


I Airdrie V Dundee Iiroadwood Stadium. Cunibernauld. 3pm.

I Clydebank vHamilton Killiowie l’ark. Arran Place. Clydebank. 3pm.

I Oumbarton v Morton Bogheatl Park. Miller Street. Dumbarton. 3pm.

I Dundee United v Ounfennline 'l‘annadice Park. Tannadice Street. Dundee. 3pm.

I St Johnstone v St Mirren Meniarmtti Park. (‘rieff Road. Perth. 3pm.

Sunday 28

PREMIER LEAGUE I Rangers v Aberdeen lbrox Stadium. lidmiston Drive. Glasgow, 3pm.

Wednesday 24

I ladies Golf Union Challenge Bowl Douglas Park. Glasgow. I‘irst tee-off occurs at 9. lllam. with 85 golfers expected to take part. Contact the Scottish Ladies' Golfing Association on l)l2‘)2 479582.

HORSE RACING Saturday 20

I Scottish Grand National .-\yr Racecourse. Safety considerations have this field down to 30 runners. Stai'ter's orders at 4.05an More information from the Jockey (‘lub on ()l7l 4sz 4021. See panel.


I Scottish Championship Knockhill Circuit. Dunfermline. lpm. Under-lls get in free with {o for adults and £3 concessions to see the Scottish Formula Ford. Tarmac XR Challenge and Road Saloons. Cotitact the circuit on (H.383 723337.

PETANOUE Sunday 21

I Grand Prix Bell's Sports Centre. l’ertli. Illam. Another event for fans of the alternative bowls. See Hit List.

IA . ’rv3!



I Benson & Hedges Cup (,‘aptained by George Salmond. the Scots meet Noitliants hoping to avoid the whitewash of defeats sustained in last year's competition. Further details from the Scottish Cricket l’nion on (ll3l 317 7247. I.ur'/I.\‘r1/t’ I’ur/s‘. Fur/iii: Tue .37). lltmi.


I Glasgow City International Challenge The British team’s last match ended in victory in Saudi Arabia and they return to Scotland to take on the powerful Romanians. Five of the team play for City of Glasgow Ragax/i. including skipper lain Grubb. Call the Scottish Volleyball :‘sss‘ociation on (ll 3| 55o 4633 for more informaton. Kt’ll'lll Hit/l Iii/errntrrmnt/ Sports gln'rnt. Glasgow. Sun 2/. 3pm. {1/ (£2). PETANOUE

I Grand Prix 34 Triples Teams are setting out on a three-event mission to gain a place in the finals in June. An accumulative points system will dictate who goes through to the latter stages. See it before it becomes fashionable. To find out more call the Scottish I’etanque Association on

0 I 786 4706 l 9. Bel/K X/HH'IX ('(vlll't’. l’erI/r. Sun 2/. ltlum -’)/)HI.


Saturday 20

I International Challenge \Illll‘lac. .~\yr. The Scots l‘nder-IS and l'ndei l‘) teams take on the Welsh with kick~olts at lpm and 3,3tipm. More details from the Scottish Rugby l'nion on lll3l Ho 5000.


Saturday 27

I Scottish Senior Championships for Blind and Physically Disabled Swimmers l‘ife Sports Institute. (ilenrothes. llam. All strokes are coy ered w llll distances beginning at 35 lllL‘ll'L‘s, More information from the Scottish Sports .~\ss'ociation for [lie Disabled on HIV): ~1l57llll.


Sunday 21

I Glasgow City International Challenge Kelvin llall. Glasgow. 2pm. The liritisli team return to Scotland after a two-year absence for a meeting with Romania. See llilllsl

82 The List I‘) Apr-2 May l996