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  1. ITV Report

Getting under starters orders for the Grand National 2015

Parsnip Pete jumps a fence at Aintree Racecourse in 2014. Photo: Press Association.

Preparations are well underway for the Grand National Festival at Aintree Racecourse which opens next month.

The event begins on Thursday, April 9, with the main race - the Crabbies Grand National taking place on Saturday, April 11.

Katie Walsh, who came third in the Grand National in 2012, told us this year's meeting will be extra special after she was named an ambassador for Ladies' Day.

And Richard Newland, the trainer of 2014 Grand National winner Pineau De Re, told us about the excitement building the big race nears:

Pineau De Re ridden by Leighton Aspell wins the Crabbies Grand National on Grand National Day of the Crabbie's Grand National 2014. Credit: Press Association.

Phil Smith, Head of Handicapping at the British Horseracing Authority, told us where things stand with the runners and riders.