CHAMPION Jockey Richard Johnson might be without a horse to ride in this year's Grand National.

The 40-year-old, from Herefordshire, has never won Saturday's race having ridden it 20 times and finishing second twice aboard What's Up Boys in 2002 and Balthazar King in 2014.

However, with the race just days away as the Hereford Times went to print the Gold Cup winner was without a horse to ride in this Saturday's main event.

"It's a massive festival," said Johnson.

"To have a winner at any festival is hard to come by and all the English and Irish trainers bring their best horses. So we all go there full of hope but unfortunately we can't all be winners. I would like to win the Grand National and I have come so close which is frustrating.

"It's the worlds most famous horse race as everybody knows about the Grand National. It would be lovely to win it but I need the right partner and at the moment I haven't got a ride but that could change."

Johnson will be racing on Saturday at Aintree aboard local horse Thomas Patrick trained by Ledbury's Tom Lacey in the 3.40pm Betway Handicap Chase and Weston Road in the Novice Hurdle also on Saturday.

Byton trainer Kerry Lee has three horses entered at Aintree Festival with Gino Trail set to race in the Red Rum Handicap Chase on Thursday and will again be ridden by Jamie Moore.

Top Gamble goes for the Topham Chase over the prestigious Grand National fences at Aintree on Friday when he will be testing the Grand National fences for the first time in public.

Lee's horse Magic Dancer will also be running in the Conditional Jockey's race after the Grand National on Saturday.