3 greatest Grand National moments

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1- Red Rum’s 1973 victory

It looks unlikely that there will ever be a racehorse like Red Rum. He wrote his name in gold letters in the history of the Grand National when he won an unprecedented treble of Grand Nationals. Though his other victories were great, the 1973 win over Crisp was the stuff of legends. From a position of clear defeat, he pulled off a feat that horse racing fans will never be able to forget.

Red Rum had entered this race as a joint-favorite with Crisp, however, the Australian Champion established a significant lead by the time the horses reached the Chair. At the final fence, Red Rum was trailing by 15 lengths and the race looked over for Red Rum.

That’s when he started accelerating and making up ground. Crisp was also beginning to tire and his speed was slowing and Red Rum overtook him just 2 strides from the finishing post. Many regard this win as one of the greatest Grand Nationals in history. Red Rum won the next year’s Grand National and came second in the next two editions before registering the unprecedented treble in 1977.

2- Devon Loch caused heartbreak

The 1956 Grand National was one of the most painful moments for Dick Francis and Fred Rimell. They almost got their hands on the Grand National trophy only to lose it in the end. Dick Francis was so overwhelmed with emotions that he couldn’t stop his tears from flowing.

With just 40 yards from the winning post, Devon Loch was 5 lengths ahead of the second-placed E.S.B. A comfortable victory looked almost guaranteed, but then something happened which shocked everyone at the race. Devon Loch jumped into the air and landed on his stomach, handing an easy win to E.S.B.

To this day, no-one could say with certainty what caused Devon Loch to behave in this unexpected way. Some said that a cramp in the horse’s hindquarter caused him to belly-flop, others attributed this unusual behavior to the adjacent water-jump whose shadow may have confused the horse into doing this.

3- Fionavon’s upset victory

The 1967 Grand National was one of the most bizarre races ever ran on the Aintree Racecourse. The unusual circumstances that were created saw one of the great upset victories in the history of the Grand National.

Foinavon, ridden by John Buckingham, was a 100/1 shot to win before the race. No-one could have imagined in their wildest dreams that Foinavon would win one of the greatest horse racing honors by the end.

At the 23rd fence, a loose horse (Popham Down) veered dramatically to his right, causing a huge pile-up. This chaos affected the majority of the horses, however, Foinavon could easily avoid this mess because he was lagging very far behind.

Buckingham could scarcely believe his luck that he had established a 30 lengths lead and that he could win the race. The other contenders gave chase and tried to close to the gap, but Foinavon was so far ahead that he easily claimed the race by 15 lengths in the end. Strangely, Foinavon won this race because he was too slow and so he could avoid the melee.