Aintree: 15 facts about the Grand National

With just under three months to go until the most famous steeplechase in the world, the Grand National 2019 odds are shaping up nicely ahead of the eagerly anticipated showpiece.

Tiger Roll is the ante-post favourite at the moment, available at 24/1 for those who believe he can replicate last year’s victory.

However, with over 90 entries confirmed so far, it really is a lottery when it comes to picking the winner from the National.

Ahead of the event at Aintree on April 6th 2019, we’ve delved through all the interesting facts to bring you right up to speed with the Grand National.

1. The Grand National was first run in 1839 and won by Lottery with a starting price of 9/1. The jockey was Jem Mason, who was a champion English jockey prior to his National success.

2. Red Rum holds the most number of wins at the Grand National with three. The legendary steeplechaser won it in 1973, 1974 and in 1977.

3. In terms of leading jockeys, George Stevens won it five times between 1856 and 1870. In the modern era, Richard Dunwoody, Carl Llewellyn, Ruby Walsh and Leighton Aspell have each recorded two wins.

4. The 2018 Grand National saw the prize fund stand at £1m, this will be the same for 2019.

5. In 1981, jockey Bob Champion overcame testicular cancer and went on to win the Grand National with Aldaniti. In 1984, the film ‘Champions’ was released portraying Champion’s story.

6. The 1967 Grand National saw arguably the biggest upset in the events history. After a huge pile-up of horses, 100/1 shot Foinavon took the glory after skipping through the melee.

7. Aintree Racecourse is named after an ancient Viking settlement.

8. In 2012, jockey Katie Walsh posted a third placed finish. This is the best result from a female jockey to this day. The first female jockeys started racing from 1977.

9. The youngest ever jockey to win the Grand National was Bruce Hobbs, who was just 17-years-old when he won with Battleship in 1938.

10. The oldest jockey to win the Grand National is Dick Saunders, who was a sprightly 48-years-old when he was victorious on Grittar in 1982.

11. In 1855, jockey Sam Darling narrowly avoided death when he fell off his horse and was knocked out. The horse running behind him hit him in the back of the head and woke him up.

12. The 1993 Grand National is often known as ‘the race that never was’ after a false start resulted in 30 horses completing the whole course. The Jockey Club declared the race void and up to £75m in stakes was returned to punters via bookmakers.

13. More controversy surrounded the Grand National in 1997, when bomb threats from the IRA saw the event cancelled until the Monday.

14. The fastest ever time recorded for a Grand National winner was Mr Frisk in 1990, posting a time of 8 minutes and 47.8 seconds.

15. In contrast, the slowest time recorded for a winner was in fact the very first Grand National, won by Lottery. The time recorded was 14 minutes and 53 seconds.