The Grand National at Aintree is regarded as one of the finest horse-racing events in the world. It was first started in 1839, thus making it one of the oldest as per the Grand National guide. It is run over 4 miles and 514 yards while horses also have to jump 30 fences when they complete two laps of the Aintree races Grand National.
The prize money of £1 million makes it one of the most valuable events in the European horse racing scenario. Aintree hosts the Grand National races, and the course itself is much larger in terms of fences than the other racecourses that are involved as part of the National Hunt races.
Horse racing in the Grand National started out as an idea of William Lynn. Foundation stones for the Aintree racecourse was laid out in 1829. Even though the proper start of the course has been disputed, it started growing into a major event in the span of a decade. Even though Lynn’s health was significantly affected during the 1840s, he was able to transform from a small local event in Liverpool to an event of national interest.
As expected, the races had to be relocated during the First World War and it was known as the Racecourse Association Steeplechase during these years. The races at Gatwick have never really been acknowledged as the Grand National events.
The tournament once again ran into trouble during the Second World War, as it was not held for a period of four years from 1941 to 1945.
One of the major incidents at the festival took place in 1956 when Devon Loch seemed like heading for a comfortable victory with top form Grand National only to lose the race by collapsing in the middle. It still remains as one of the bizarre incidents in the history of tournament largely because Devon Loch was a horse owned by the Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother. Queen Mother famously reacted to the event by saying that it was part and parcel of racing.
Another major surprise was the performance of Foinavon in the 1967 event. Despite entering as not one of the favourites for Grand National with odds of 100/1, he managed to win the event to causing a lot of amazement. The incredible form for Grand National by Foinavon led to organisers of the race naming the 7th/23rd fence in remembrance of the horse in 1984.
Red Rum is the greatest Grand National race horses in the eyes of many when it comes to the Grand National race. During the 1970s, he was breaking all the records set by previous horses racing in Grand National. He is still remembered as the greatest on Grand National racing videos largely because of winning three times in a row. No horse has managed to even match his form since then. Red Rum also came close to winning the titles in the Grand National race cards for 1975 and 1976. The completion time record of nine minutes and 1.9 seconds at the races Grand National stood for 16 years before being recently broken.
Mon Mome is one of the latest long price winners after a gap of more than 40 years.
|2016||Rule The World||9||10-07||David Mullins||Mouse Morris||Gigginstown House Stud||33/1|
|2015||Many Clouds||8||11-09||Leighton Aspell||Oliver Sherwood||Trevor Hemmings||25/1|
|2014||Pineau de Re||11||10-06||Leighton Aspell||Richard Newland||John Proven||25/1|
|2013||Auroras Encore||11||10-03||Ryan Mania||Sue Smith||Douglas Pryde, Jim Beaumont & David P van der Hoeven||66/1|
|2012||Neptune Collonges||11||11-06||Daryl Jacob||Paul Nicholls||John Hales||33/1|
|2011||Ballabriggs||10||11-00||Jason Maguire||Donald McCain, Jr.||Trevor Hemmings||14/1|
|2010||Don’t Push It||10||11-05||Tony McCoy||Jonjo O’Neill||J. P. McManus||10/1 JF|
|2009||Mon Mome||9||11-00||Liam Treadwell||Venetia Williams||Vida Bingham||100/1|
|2008||Comply or Die||9||10-09||Timmy Murphy||David Pipe||David Johnson||7/1 JF|
|2007||Silver Birch||10||10-06||Robbie Power||Gordon Elliott||Brian Walsh||33/1|
The Grand National race takes place at the National course in the Aintree racetrack, the course consists of 16 fences over 2 laps. Since horses complete just under 7 km over the course of the race, it is the longest National Hunt event in Britain.
As one of the most competitive horse racing events in the world, it is not surprising that the Grand National has not been retained by the Grand National top 5 horses in the last decade. Rule the World is the reigning champion and he managed to dispossess Many Clouds from the title. In recent years, though, some jockeys have dominated the Grand National runners form. Leighton Aspell rode to success in the 2014 and 2015 events.
An interesting element is that most of the winners have an average starting price of around 25/1 in the Grand National form guide. The highest ranked horse to win the Grand National was Ballabriggs in 2011 and he was backed at just 14/1 for the win. No trainer has managed to retain the award in the last decade. Mouse Morris managed to get Rule The World, who is owned by Gigginstown House Stud, to a victory.
The youngest horse in the Grand National stats to have won the title in recent years is Many Clouds and he was just eight when he won the Grand National.
Fred Winter is regarded as one of the legendary jockeys according to the Grand National guide after having managed to ride to success in two of the events. He was also responsible for training two more thoroughbreds who later went on to win the event. A hugely successful career saw him lift the title as the Champion Jockey on four occasions, while he was named as the British Champion Trainer on an impressive eight occasions. Surprisingly, his Grand National horses form is not his most iconic, as this status goes to the 1962 Grand Steeple-Chase de Paris event.
Tommy Carberry will forever be remembered as the jockey who brought an end to Red Rum’s incredible run in the Grand National. Regarded as one of the top Grand National favourites ever to grace the tournament in its almost 2 centuries-long history, Red Rum was on a roll after having won three back to back titles. Carberry managed to win the 1975 event with L’Escargot to end the run of Red Rum – one of the best horse to win Grand National. Since it is highly unlikely that Red Rum’s record will be broken, Carberry will continue to be remembered as the man who achieved the unthinkable.
Fred Rimell is remembered as the trainer who managed to see his work win the Grand National four times. One of the most crowning achievements was to get Nicolaus Silver win the event. Even today, he remains as one of the three grey horses to win the racing Grand National. After having been a Champion Jockey three times, he managed to become even better as the winner of leading trainer title on five occasions. ESB, Gay Trip, and Rag Trade are his other racing Grand National runners to win. The latter was one of the horses to beat the incredible Red Rum during the 1970s.
One of the most successful trainers from the bygone era, George Dockeray managed to win for Grand National events with four different horses. This achievement places him alongside Fred Rimell and Ginger McCain as one of the three trainers to have ever done so. Dockeray’s successes were during the start of the event with Lottery, one of the Grand National best horse to win, claiming the win in 1839. This was followed by Jerry, Gaylad, and Miss Mowbray in 1840, 1842, and 1852 respectively. Back then, he was the undisputed king of Grand National. The lottery is the winner of the Grand National first race.
Even though Red Rum managed to win the title three times in succession and is regarded as one of the dominating achievements in the history of the event, Battleship is considered as a legendary horse to win Grand National. He was successful in both the American Grand National and the British Grand National horse race, thus becoming the only horse to do so. His jockey was Bruce Hobbs and he remains as the youngest jockey to have ever been successful at the Aintree races. The US-bred race horse was sired by Man o’ War and he was foaled in 1927. He was inducted into the United States’ Racing Hall of Fame in 1969.