Who doesn’t love the Grand National?
Every April come rain or shine horse racing fans are excited by the most famous steeplechase in the world. Such a rich history dating back to 1836 when a horse named The Duke won in style. In fact, he went on to win the following year. The Grand National takes place at Aintree, Liverpool, England. It is run over a distance of 4 miles 2 ½ furlongs. This left handed turf course sees a maximum of 40 horses aged seven years and older (rated 125 or higher by the British Horseracing Authority) jump a total of 30 fences. Two circuits are run for a win prize of £500,000 and total prize money of £1000,000.
Did you know the Grand National is watched by 600 million viewers and broadcast in over 140 countries across the globe.
Many readers will remember famous past winners including Red Rum, who was trained by Ginger McCain. The only horse to win three times 1973, 1974 & 1977. This astounding horse, who never fell once in 100 races, was a household name and loved by race fans across the globe. For a horse that cost just 400 guineas, and struggled with foot problems and lameness, it was a truly remarkable story. One of hope over adversity.
Every winner has a story to tell.
You may remember other winning horses including:
• Tipperary Tim (1928) who was the first horse to win at odds of 100/1.
• Foinavon (1967) another surprise winner at 100/1 who was so far behind he had seemingly no chance of winning when there was a pile up at the 23rd fence which saw all but a few continue racing, including Foinavon, ridden by John Buckingham, who held the late charge of favourite Honey End. In 1984 the fence was renamed Foinavon.
• Aldantini & Bob Champion (1981) Both Bob Champion and Aldaniti had suffered from illness and injury. Champion bravely fighting cancer and his mount with chronic leg problem turned this race into a fairy story ending when they won by four-and-a-half lengths. Later this most famous win was turned into a film Champions (1984) staring John Hurt and a wonderful musical score by Carl Davis.
• Jenny Pitman (1983) The first female winner with Corbiere. She went on to train another Grand National winner in Royal Athlete (1995) and two Cheltenham Gold Cup winners with Burrough Hill Lad (1984) and Garrison Savanha (1991). In 1998 Pitman was awarded an OBE for services to horse racing and won Sports Personality of the Year.
• Tiger Roll (2018/19) winner of consecutive Nationals and fancied to make history with Red Rum but sadly Coronavirus pandemic put pay to the 2020 Grand National.
Grand National Trends: Picking A Winner – Last 20 Years
Punters across the world enjoy betting on the Grand National. In fact, it is called the housewife’s favourite because of its popularity. It is always good to bet responsibly and what you can afford to lose. The good side of the Grand National is that you can bet on a horse at huge odds and have a chance of winning. In fact, five horses have won at odds of 100/1. In the last 20 years almost half of the winners have been priced 20/1 or greater including prices: 100/1, 66/1, 50/1, 33/1, 33/1, 33/1, 25/1, 25/1 & 20/1.
Good luck if you are betting.
Photo: Pixabay (free)