1977

The winner

Red Rum`s third victory made history and earned him superstar status. He became the most famous racehorse of all time and he stayed in training for one final attempt at the National. Sadly it was not to be. On the eve of the race he was found to be slightly lame after his final work out on the Southport sands and his devoted trainer immediately announced his retirement. The news made headlines throughout the world and to a degree completely overshadowed the actual race itself. Red Rum spent his retirement opening supermarkets, betting shops and making personal appearances. In 1977 he officially switched on the Blackpool Illuminations (although how he managed to get his hoof to flick the switch is a bit of a mystery). He is the only animal to my knowledge to put in an appearance on the BBCs Sports Personality of the Year award. In 2002 his third National triumph came twenty first in a poll of the hundred greatest sporting moments of all time. He was never happier though then when he came to Aintree on Grand National day leading the parade for the first time in 1978 and continuing to do so until 1994. He made one final visit to Aintree in May 1995 when the racecourse put on a special race meeting to celebrate his thirtieth birthday. He died on 18th October 1995 and fittingly is buried by the winning post at Aintree. A legend. We have never seen his like since and to be honest we probably never will.

Leading fancies

For the first time since 1946 the current Cheltenham Gold Cup winner lined up at Aintree. The Irish trained DAVY LAD had been considered a very lucky winner in a race of tragedy and misfortune where all the market leaders had come to grief. Even if he was considered a below par Gold Cup winner he was still a very capable animal who had been campaigned in the highest quality over the past two seasons. RED RUM had returned to winning ways at Carlisle in October but had disappointed in his two prep races, the Grand National Trial and the Greenall Whitley Breweries Chase at Haydock. Favourite was the Fred Rimell trained ANDY PANDY, formerly trained in Ireland he had won the Charissma Gold Cup at Kempton and had beaten Red Rum by no less than forty lengths in the National Trial. In the absence through injury of 1976 hero Rag Trade the Rimell/Burke combination had a more than adequate replacement. Others to note included GAY VULGAN who had run up a sequence of five wins including the Bass Handicap Chase at Cheltenham over four miles in January and the National Hunt Handicap Chase at the Festival. One of my favourite horses in training at the time was the top class ZETA`S SON who had fallen at Bechers in the 1976 Topham and had then disappointed when fancied for the Irish National. However this year he had won the Hennessy Cognac Gold Cup and the Mildmay Memorial Chase at Sandown. Aintree debutant SEBASTIAN V was the hope of Scotland having been running well in long distance chases. CHURCHTOWN BOY had run well to finish in 1976 and was looking to become the first horse to win the elusive Topham Trophy/Grand National double having won a competitive Topham  two days earlier. Mention should also be made of one outsider, a hunter chaser called BARONY FORT from Essex. He was making history as he was to be partnered by Charlotte Brew who was the first lady rider  to line up in the race. Their hopes were non-existent and despite the massive publicity the challenge generated their best hope was of completing quietly out of harms way.

The Anoraks selection : ANDY PANDY

Each-way Choice : ZETA`S SON 

NEWS OF THE WORLD GRAND NATIONAL HANDICAP CHASE 4 1/2 miles £41,140 to the winner, £12,520 to the second, £6,160 to the third & £2,980 to the fourth 

 1     033300   RED RUM  12, 11-8  (D.McCain)  T.Stack 

 2    030200   WHAT A BUCK  10, 11-4  (D.Nicholson)  J.King 

 3       113103   ZETA`S SON  8, 11-4  (P.Bailey)  M F Morris 

 4     332321    DAVY LAD  7, 10-13  (M O`Toole - IRE)  D T Hughes 

 5     100004   FOREST KING  8, 10-12  (K.Hogg)  R.Crank 

 6      2144F2   ROMAN BAR  8, 10-10  (P.Taaffe in Ireland)  P.Kiely 

 7       /0-1111    GAY VULGAN  9, 10-8  (F T Walwyn)  W.Smith 

 8   42-0332   PENGRAIL  9, 10-8  (F T Winter)  R.Atkins 

 9      211041    ANDY PANDY  8, 10-7  (T F Rimell)  J.Burke 

10    412232    PRINCE ROCK  9, 10-6  (P.Bailey)  G.Thorner 

11      41F013    WAR BONNET  9, 10-6  (J.Dreaper - IRE)  T.Carberry 

12    14-P212    WINTER RAIN  9, 10-6  (A.Dickinson)  M.Dickinson 

13      011301    HIGH KEN  11, 11-3*  (J A C Edwards)  Mr J Edwards 

14    02011-3    HIDDEN VALUE  9, 10-4  (S G Norton)  J.Bourke 

15    3P4022   THE PILGARLIC  9, 10-4  (T F Rimell)  R R Evans 

16      311124    SIR GARNET  8, 10-3  (G W Richards)  J J O`Neill 

17     21220F   BROWN ADMIRAL  8, 10-1  (T F Rimell)  S.Morshead 

18    010303    COLLINGWOOD  11, 10-1  (Capt N F Crump)  C.Hawkins 

19   P0-004P   DUFFLE COAT  9, 10-4*  (D.Morley)  B R Davies 

20  P24033    EYECATCHER  11, 10-1  (J R Bosley)  C.Read 

21   40-F2P0   LORD OF THE HILLS  10, 10-1  (R.Bastiman)  D.Goulding 

22   130-F40   NEREO  11, 10-0  (F T Winter)  R.Kington 

23   1F0-U21    SAGE MERLIN  9, 10-5*  (J D Bingham)  I.Watkinson 

24   034000   BOOM DOCKER  10, 10-0  (D.Marks)  J.Williams 

25   0F203F   CARROLL STREET  10, 10-0  (G B Balding)  R.Linley 

26   030010   CASTLERUDDERY  11, 10-0  (P.McCreery - IRE) L.O`Donnell 

27     111400    SAUCEY BELLE  11, 10-0  (R E Peacock)  R F Davies 

28   433P21    CHURCHTOWN BOY  10, 10-0  (M.Salaman)  M.Blackshaw 

29   010F44    HARBAN  8, 10-0  (F.Flood - IRE)  F.Berry 

30  443203    SEBASTIAN V  9, 10-1*  (C H Bell)  R.Lamb 

31    001F20    ROYAL THRUST  8, 10-0  (T F Rimell)  C.Tinkler 

32   21-PPF0   HAPPY RANGER  10, 10-5*  (J.Thorne)  P.Blacker 

33   F34042    BURRATOR  8, 10-0  (A P Jarvis)  Mr J Docker 

34  0-43000   SANDWILAN  9, 10-0  (J S Wright)  R.Hyett 

35  31P-U03    FORESAIL  10, 10-0  (M C Chapman)  G.Holmes 

37   P00000   INNYCARRA  10, 10-0  (C Fryer)  S.Jobar 

38  0-02304   SPITTIN IMAGE  11, 10-5*  (M.Scudamore)  R.Champion 

39   4-20341   WILLY WHAT  8, 10-0  (S.Mellor)  J.Glover 

40   303002    FORT VULGAN  9, 10-0  (J K M Oliver)  N.Tinkler 

41    /044P-0    BARONY FORT  12, 10-1*  (Charlotte Brew)  Miss C Brew 

42  U4P00P    HUPERADE  13, 10-7*  (J.Carden)  Mr J Carden 

44  00P-04F   THE SONGWRITER  8, 10-0  (Mrs J Pitman)  B.Smart 

S.P : 15-2 Andy Pandy, 9-1 Gay Vulgan & RED RUM, 10-1 Davy Lad, 15-1 Pengrail, 16-1 War Bonnet & Winter Rain, 18-1 Eyecatcher, Prince Rock & Zetas Son, 20-1 Churchtown Boy, Sage Merlin, Sir Garnet & What A Buck, 22-1 Sebastian V, 25-1 Roman Bar, 28-1 Brown Admiral, 33-1 Forest King, 40-1 Castleruddery, Hidden Value & The Pilgarlic, 50-1 Burrator, Carroll Street, Collingwood, Fort Vulgan, High Ken, Sandwilan, Spittin Image & Willy What, 66-1 Boom Docker, Happy Ranger & Harban, 100-1 Duffle Coat, Foresail, Inycara, Lord of the Hills, Nereo & Royal Thrust, 200-1 Barony Fort, Huperade, Saucey Belle & The Songwriter

Result

1st   RED RUM - Tommy Stack 

2nd CHURCHTOWN BOY -M Blackshaw 

3rd  EYECATCHER - Chris Read 

4th  THE PILGARLIC - Richard Evans 

5th  FOREST KING - Reg Crank 

6th  WHAT A BUCK - Jeff King 

7th   HAPPY RANGER - Philip Blacker 

8th  CARROLL STREET - Richard Linley 

9th  COLLINGWOOD - Colin Hawkins 

10th HIDDEN VALUE (rem) - J.Bourke

11th  SAUCEY BELLE (rem) - R F Davies

 

Time : 9 minutes, 30.3 secs

Distances : 25-6-8-4-4

Owned by Noel le Mare

Trained by Donald "Ginger" McCain at Southport, Lancashire 

Aintree debutants (27)

Andy Pandy, Brown Admiral, Burrator, Carroll Street*, Collingwood*, Davy Lad*, Duffle Coat*, Foresail*, Forest King*, Fort Vulgan*, Gay Vulgan*, Happy Ranger*, Harban, Hidden Value, Inycarra*, Lord of the Hills*, Pengrail*, Prince Rock, Royal Thrust*, Sage Merlin*, Saucey Belle*, Sebastian V, Sir Garnet*, The Songwriter, War Bonnet, What A Buck*, Willy What 

Winners at Aintree

CHURCHTOWN BOY - Topham Trophy (1977) 

RED RUM - Grand National (1973 & 1974) 

The Class of 77

ANDY PANDY

BARONY FORT

BOOM DOCKER

CARROLL HOUSE

CASTLERUDDERY

COLLINGWOOD

DAVY LAD

DUFFLE COAT

EYECATCHER

FORESAIL

FORT VULGAN

GAY VULGAN

HAPPY RANGER

HIGH KEN

HUPERADE

FOREST KING

INYCARRA

LORD OF THE HILLS

PENGRAIL

RED RUM

ROYAL THRUST

SAGE MERLIN

SAUCEY BELLE

SIR GARNET

SPITTIN IMAGE

THE SONGWRITER

WILLY WHAT

WINTER RAIN

WHAT A BUCK

ZETAS SON

1978

The winner

For me Lucius is the forgotten National winner of the decade. At nine he still had more Nationals in him but like Well to Do before him he never returned to Aintree. That wasn`t the plan though as after a third place behind future Gold Cup winner Alverton in the Greenall Whitley Breweries Chase he was one of the favourites for the 1979 renewal but a last minute bout of coughing ruled him out. Thereafter he disappeared from the limelight although he continued running in small events until May 1981 when he finished unplaced in an amateur riders chase at Uttoxeter. He spent his retirement being hunted in Scotland until his death aged twenty seven. 

Leading Fancies

With the last minute withdrawal and the subsequent announcement of the retirement of RED RUM those that did make the final line up were given very much second billing. Yet even without the nations favourite racehorse it still looked a very decent renewal of the worlds greatest steeplechase. Heading the eight strong challenge from Ireland was TIED COTTAGE, winner of the 1976 Sun Alliance Chase and second in the 1977 Gold Cup. He had been aimed all season at the National and had run well behind Master H in the Leisure Caravans Chase at Sandown. MASTER H the winner of that race for the second year running was considered to be one of the most improved horses in training having won three other competitive chases. The 1976 winner RAG TRADE returned to the scene of his greatest triumph. Lightly raced since his victory and now with a different trainer he had missed most of the following season with injury but had won one of two prep races at the now defunct Teesside Park and started favourite. In the absence of Red Rum last years Topham Trophy winner and National runner up CHURCHTOWN BOY came in for considerable support despite the fact that he had shown no form whatsoever in his six races this season and he had even refused on his latest start. Of the newcomers SHIFTING GOLD had won twice at Sandown including the Mildmay Memorial, old favourite TAMALIN a winner three times this season and OTTER WAY a former top hunter chaser and surprise winner of the 1976 Whitbread Gold Cup all came in for support.

The Anoraks selection : CHURCHTOWN BOY

Each-way : MASTER UPHAM

SUN GRAND NATIONAL HANDICAP CHASE (68 entries) 4 1/2 miles, £29,148 to the winner, £10,076 to the second, £4,938 to the third & £2,369 to the fourth

 2     40111F  SHIFTING GOLD  9, 11-6  (K C Bailey)  R.Champion 

 3  402022  TIED COTTAGE  10, 11-4  (D L Moore - IRE)  T.Carberry 

 4     110F31  RAG TRADE  12, 11-3  (G B Fairburn)  J J ONeill 

 5     012211  MASTER H  9, 11-2  (M E Oliver)  R.Crank 

 6    013331  TAMALIN  11, 11-12  (G W Richards)  G.Thorner 

 7   404432  APRIL SEVENTH  12, 10-11  (R.Turnell)  A.Turnell 

 8    100F31  OTTER WAY  10, 10-10  (O J Carter)  J.King 

 9   F22122  LUCIUS  9, 10-9  (G W Richards)  B R Davies 

10  403320  ROMAN BAR  9, 10-8  (P.Taaffe - IRE)  P.Kiely 

11   004300  WAR BONNET  10, 10-8  (A O`Connell - IRE)  D T Hughes 

13    232F11   SO  9, 10-4  (E J O`Grady - IRE)  Mr N Madden 

14  240403   MICKLEY SEABRIGHT 10, 10-3  (T F Rimell) Mr P Brookshaw 

15   212400  GOLDEN WHIN  8, 10-4*  (S F Holland)  S.Holland 

16     311434  HIDDEN VALUE  10, 10-0  (S G Norton)  T.Stack 

17    401040  BROWN ADMIRAL  9, 10-0  (T F Rimell)  J.Burke 

18      41F211  COOLISHALL  9, 10-0  (P D Cundell)  M.O`Halloran 

19     110220  MASTER UPHAM  10, 10-0  (D R Gandolfo)  P.Barton 

20  22U320  IRISH TONY  10, 10-0  (N.Crump)  D.Atkins 

22  042344   DOUBLE NEGATIVE  8, 10-0  (T F Rimell)  C.Tinkler 

23   03F130   SEBASTIAN V  10, 10-1*  (C H Bell)  R.Lamb 

24   142430   DRUMROAN  10, 10-0  (Mrs G Nolan - IRE)  G.Newman 

25  30000R  CHURCHTOWN BOY  11, 10-0  (M.Salaman)  M.Blackshaw 

27  101240    CORNISH PRINCESS   10, 10-1*  (W G Turner)  R.Hoare 

28  423210   LEAN FORWARD  12, 10-0  (R C Armytage)  H J Evans 

29  334003  LORD BROWNDODD  10, 10-7*  (F T Winter)  J.Francome 

30  034402  NEREO  12, 10-0  (F T Winter)  M.Floyd 

31   023300  THE PILGARLIC  10, 10-1*  (T F Rimell)  R R Evans 

32  00F003  HARBAN  9, 10-0  (F.Flood - IRE)  J P Byrne 

34  F20F0P  HENRY HALL  9, 10-0  (F.Flood - IRE)  F.Berry 

36  103300   BURRATOR  9, 10-0  (O O`Neill)  J.Suthern 

37  U214P3   DOUBLE BRIDLE  7, 10-1  (F T Walwyn)  W.Smith 

38     111010  TEDDY BEAR II  11, 10-4*  (J A C Edwards)  P.Blacker 

39  1300U0  SILKSTONE  10, 10-0  (S G Norton)  G.Graham 

40  400202 THE SONGWRITER  9, 10-0  (Mrs J Pitman)  B.Smart 

41   000001  GLEAMING RAIN  10, 10-0  (M.Neville - IRE)  S.Tracey 

42   2443U1  SADALE VI  11, 10-1*  (Capt J George)  C.Candy

 

 Non Runners : 1 RED RUM (T.Stack), 12 FOREST KING (R.Barry)

S.P : 8-1 Rag Trade, 9-1 Tied Cottage, 10-1 Master H, 14-1 Churchtown Boy, LUCIUS & So, 16-1 Coolishall, Lord Browndodd, Otter Way & Shifting Gold, 20-1 April Seventh, 25-1 Gleaming Rain, Hidden Value, Master Upham, Sebastian V & Tamalin, 33-1 Brown Admiral, Double Negative, Irish Tony, Lean Forward, MIckley Seabright, Roman Bar & The Pilgarlic, 40-1 Nereo, 50-1 Double Bridle, Drumroan, Golden Whin, Never Rock, Teddy Bear II & The Songwriter, 66-1 Burrator, Cornish Princess, Harban, Henry Hall, Sadale VI & Silkstone 

Result

1st   LUCIUS - Bob Davies 

2nd SEBASTIAN V - Ridley Lamb 

3rd  DRUMROAN - Gerry Newman 

4th  COOLISHALL - Martin O`Halloran 

5th  THE PILGARLIC - Richard Evans 

6th  MICKLEY SEABRIGHT - Mr P Brookshaw 

7th   LORD BROWNDODD - John Francome 

8th  THE SONGWRITER - Brian Smart 

9th  ROMAN BAR - P.Kiely 

10th BROWN ADMIRAL - John Burke 

11th  GOLDEN WHIN - S.Holland 

12th TAMALIN - Graham Thorner 

13th  LEAN FORWARD - H J Evans 

14th  NEREO - Mark Floyd 

15th  NEVER ROCK - Kevin Mooney

 

Time : 9 minutes 33.9 secs

Distances : 1/2-nk-2-hd-15-nk

Owned by Mrs D A Whitaker

Trained by Gordon W Richards at Greystoke in Cumbria 

Aintree debutants (22)

Coolishall, Cornish Princess*, Double Bridle*, Double Negative, Drumroan, Gleaming Rain*, Golden Whin*, Henry Hall*, Irish Tony*, Lean Forward, Lucius*, Master H* ,Master Upham*, MIckley Seabright*, Never Rock, Otter Way*, Sadale VI*, Shifting Gold*, Silkstone*, So, Tamalin*, Tied Cottage*

 

Winners at Aintree

CHURCHTOWN BOY - Topham Trophy 1977

RAG TRADE - Grand National 1976

The Class of 78

APRIL SEVENTH

BURRATOR - Won a hurdle on his racecourse debut and ten chases between 1974 & 1982. Highlight came when he won the 1976 Midlands Grand National which was one of five wins for him that season (three cme at Uttoxeter), he would also finish second in the rce in 1979 (he ran in the race a total of four times). His National experiences were more brief, he fell at the third in 1977 and a year later got sutuck in the eleventh pitching his rider over the fence. He died in 1982.

CORNISH PRINCESS - Graduted from the pointing field where she was victorious five times in 1976. Only won two chaes under rules but she did spring a 50-1 surprise when wining the Brooke Bond Oxo National at Warwick in 1977 and also finished foruth in that seasons National Hunt Handicap at the Festival. Herr Aintree experience was brief - she fell at the first and she only ran to more times thereafter.

DOUBLE BRIDAL - Won a urdle in Ireland and 3 chases (2 at Sandown) between 1975 & 1980. Was prominent when he fell at the thirteenth. Very lightly raced therefter.

GLEAMING RAIN - Irish chaser who won 1977 M7nster National at Lierick. Was behind when he fell at first Bechers.

GOLDEN WHIN

HARBAN - Irish chaser who was knocked out early in his first National and then rana lot better sedond time round and was with the leadres until he unseated at second Bechers (incidentally the only horse to lose his rider on the second cisucuit). He did not run in the UK again.

HENRY HALL - Won a hurdle and 3 chases in Ireland between 1974 & 1978. Was amongst the backmarkers when he fell at first Bechers. He did not return to Ireland but was sold to Peter Easterbys stable. However he broke down on his second start for new connections and was no seen out again.

HIDDEN VALUE - Winning Irish pointer who won two hunter chases in the spring of 1975. The 1977 National was his first start for British connections and he ran well fora circuit but was tailed off when he undeated four out although he was remouted to finish a distant tenth. He pulled up in the Midlands Grand National on his next start. In 1978 he didn't get so far coming down at the second fence but he did win two more races that seasn (he won four that season). Not seen out again after being sent to cntenst the Galway PLate later that year.

IRISH TONY - Won 3 hurdles & 9 chases between 72 & 81. Very useful & popular northern chaser who's best moment came when he won the Roawland Meyrick Chase in December 1976. Unseated at the first Canal Turn on his sole Aintree visit. 

LEAN FORWARD

LUCIUS - see above

MASTER H - Won 3 hurdles & 14 chases between Set 74 & Dec 79. Just off top class despite twice winning what was then called the Leisure Caravans Chase at Sandown which was then a prestigious event and both times when he won (in 1977 & 1978) he beat top class fields. Finished Started one of the favourites for the 1978 National but his saddle slipped and he was unseated at the first Canal.Ran in the re-arranged Gold Cup on his ext start and finished a distant third behind runway lwinner Midnight Court. Won a competitve chase at Chepstow in the autumn of 1978 and finished second inthe Hennessry.Sadly on his next start when held in third place in the King Georve VI chas he fell at the last fence and broke his shoulder. 

MASTER UPHAM - Won 5 hurdles & 5 chases between Oct 71 & Oct 1980. Stayed forever as witnessed by his titanitc struggle with the populer Prince Rock in the four miler at Cheltenhams New Year meeting in 1978. He had been lightly raced i the seasons before his one National attempt which ended at the eleventh fence. He later won a race at Uttoxeter in April 1980 by thiry lenths. Sadly he broke his shoulder in a fall at Sandown in ctober 1980 and had to be destroyed.

MICKLEY SEABRIGHT

NEREO

NEVER ROCK

OTTER WAY

RAG TRADE - see winner 1976

ROMAN BAR

SADALE VI

SHIFTING GOLD

SILKSTONE

TAMALIN

TEDDY BEAR II

THE SONGWRITER - Won 2 hurdles and 2 chases between Dec 72 & Nov 79. Finished second in the MIdands Grand National in 1978 and completed the course in one of this National ttempt. Was very lightly raced thereafter pulling up lame pn his final start . Was Jenny Pitmans first National runner.

TIED COTTAGE

WAR BONNET

1979

The winner

After a spell over hurdles to freshen him up Rubstic continued to be campaigned in staying chases in the north finishing third in the Great Yorkshire Chase and winning at Kelso and picking up his third Durham National. All looked set for a second attempt at the National and he started the 8-1 favourite. All was going well and he was up with the leaders on the approach to the Chair where he appeared to slip slightly on take-off hitting the top of the fence and unseating his rider for the first time in his career. In 1980-81 he only managed to win a small race at Doncaster from ten starts but he did run another solid race at Aintree finishing seventh behind Aldaniti. He stayed in training for one further year but concentrated on hunter chases. He last ran at Ayr in May 1982.

Leading fancies

For the second time in three years the current Cheltenham Gold Cup winner took his place at Aintree and carrying only ten stone thirteen the Peter Easterby trained ALVERTON looked to have an outstanding chance. A top class performer over both flat and hurdles he had progressed to the top of the steeplechasing tree after a career threatening injury at Newcastle that had kept him off the track for a season. He had won the 1978 Arkle Trophy at the Festival and after a series of narrow defeats he had won the Greenall Whitley Breweries Chase at Haydock and then won the Gold Cup by twenty five lengths. Admittedly it could be said to have been a slightly substandard renewal and his nearest rival had fallen at the last fence when upsides him but he had done all that had been asked of him and he started a worthy favourite. With Lucius a last minute absentee through coughing and Sebastian V injured the 1978 form was represented by the horses who had finished third fourth and fifth. Third placed DRUMROAN had shown no form at all whilst COOLISHALL had run just three times, his best performance being second in the Mandarin Chase at Newbury whilst fifth placed THE PILGARLIC had won his first race in more than two years when winning a hunter chase at Stratford. Of the newcomers the lightly raced MR SNOWMAN a winner at Wincanton in January and the 1978 Greenalls winner RAMBLING ARTIST a winner this season of the Rowland Meyrick Chase at Wetherby came in for support. The Scottish trained RUBSTIC had never fallen in his career and had twice won the Durham National and finished runner up twice in the Scottish Grand National. Finally there was not just one but two Gold Cup winners in the field as the 1976 Gold Cup winner ROYAL FROLIC also lined up. He had pulled up in this years renewal and had only won one race since his Gold Cup win when landing a small race at Hereford. The field was given an international flavour this year with the inclusion in the field of BEN NEVIS and THE CHAMP. BEN NEVIS had won two Maryland Hunt Cups over timber in the United States and THE CHAMP was a former Australian chaser who had won Italys premier steeplechase the Gran Premio di Merano and a race at Switzerland.  Both were now trained in the UK and to be fair their English form gave them no more than each way prospects at best.

 

The Anoracks selection : ALVERTON

Each-way : DRUMROAN 

COLT CAR GRAND NATIONAL HANDICAP CHASE (92 entries) 4 1/2 miles £30,204 to the winner, £10,446 to the second, £5,123 to the third & £2,461 to the fourth 

1    P20F1P   ROYAL FROLIC  10, 11-10  (T F Rimell)  J.Burke 

2   U0432    BEN NEVIS  11, 11-2  (T A Forster)  Mr C Fenwick 

3   2F2211    ALVERTON  9, 10-13  (M H Easterby)  J J O`Neill 

4   102010   THE CHAMP  11, 10-12  (D.Kent)  W.Smith 

5  4100F2    PURDO  8, 10-11  (N A Gaselee)  R.Champion 

6    1211-13    MR SNOWMAN  10, 10-9  (T A Forster)  G.Thorner 

8  2004F0   SAND PIT  9, 10-7  (E P Harty - IRE)  T.Carmody 

10 1030-P0  WAYWARD SCOT   10, 10-7  (D.McCain)  R F Davies 

11   21P-312   RAMBLING ARTIST  9, 10-6  (T A Gillam)  D.Goulding 

12 34-0000  DRUMROAN  11, 10-4  (Mrs G St John Nolan - IRE) G.Newman

13     1111-43  GODFREY SECUNDAS  9, 10-3  (T F Rimell)  C.Tinkler 

14 0P-2203  ZONGALERO  9, 10-5*  (N J Henderson)  B R Davies 

15  14B-320  COOLISHALL  10, 10-2  (P.Cundell)  A.Webber 

16  D-20113   ROUGH AND TUMBLE  9, 10-7*  (F T Winter)  J.Francome 

17  200200   DOUBLE NEGATIVE  9, 10-1  (T F Rimell)  Mr E Woods 

18    03104F  ARTISTIC PRINCE  8, 10-3*  (Mrs J.Pitman)  P.Blacker 

19  3000-P1  THE PILGARLIC  11, 10-1*  (T F Rimell)  R R Evans 

20 00-4033  LORD BROWNDODD  9, 10-0  (F T Winter)  A.Turnell 

21     131000  RED EARL  10, 10-0  (S.Nesbitt)  H J Evans 

22  002021   RUBSTIC  10, 10-0  (S J Leadbetter)  M.Barnes 

23 0-0000P  KINTAI  10, 10-0  (S N Cole)  B.Smart 

24 42-0040  NO GYPSY  10, 10-1  (D.Nicholson)  J.Suthern 

25 PP-PPPP  CHURCHTOWN BOY  12, 10-0  (M.Salaman)  M.Salaman 

28   033010  DROMORE  11, 10-10*  (P.McCreery - IRE)  Mr P Duggan 

30  024202  KICK ON  12, 10-0  (K.Lewis)  R.Hyett 

31   010200   FLITGROVE  8, 10-1*  (D.Nicholson)  R.Linley 

32     1111P0   OSKARD  10, 10-0  (H F Blackshaw)  M.Blackshaw 

33  112-000   WAGNER  9, 10-0  (W  A Stephenson)  R.Lamb 

34 2-30000  ALPENSTOCK  12, 10-0  (S.Mellor)  Mr D Gray 

35 0P4-30P  BROWN ADMIRAL  10, 10-0  (D.McCain)  S.Morshead 

36  321023   SANDWILAN  11, 10-0  (G A Ham)  Mrs J.Hembrow 

37  3/11-P0P  VINDICATE  12, 10-0  (D O`Connell - IRE)  Mr A O`Connell 

38  432232  CARTWRIGHT  8, 10-0  (R F Fisher)  A.Phillips 

39  010-40P  PRIME JUSTICE  9, 10-0  (W D Francis)  A K Taylor

 

Non Runners : 7 TAMALIN (B R Davies), 26 THREE GEMS (R.Crank) 

S.P : 13-2 Alverton, 10-1 Mr Snowman, 12-1 Coolishall, 14-1 Ben Nevis & Rough and Tumble, 16-1 Rambling Artist & The Pilgarlic, 20-1 Drumroan & Zongalero, 22-1 Rubstic, 25-1 Artistic Prince, Churchtown Boy, Lord Browndodd, Godfrey Secundus, Purdo, Royal Frolic, RUBSTIC & The Champ, 50-1 Dromore, Flitgrove, Kick On, Red Earl & Wagner, 66-1 Double Negative & No Gypsy, 100-1 Alpenstock, Brown Admiral, Kintai, Oskard, Sandwilan & Wayward Scot, 200-1 Cartwright, Prime Justice & Vindicate

 

Aintree debutants (24)

Alpenstock*, Alverton*, Artistic Prince, Ben Nevis, Cartwright*, Dromore, Flitgrove, Godfrey Secundus*, Kintai*, Mr Snowman*, No Gypsy, Oskard*, Prime Justice*, Purdo*, Rambling Artist*, Rough and Tumble, Royal Frolic, Rubstic, Sand Pit*, The Champ*, Vindicate*, Wagner, Wayward Scot*, Zongalero 

 Winner at Aintree

Churchtown Boy - Topham Trophy (1977) 

Result

1st   RUBSTIC - Maurice Barnes 

2nd ZONGALERO - Bob Davies 

3rd  ROUGH AND TUMBLE - J Francome 

4th  THE PILGARLIC - Richard Evans 

5th  WAGNER - Ridley Lamb 

6th  ROYAL FROLIC - John Burke 

7th   PRIME JUSTICE - A K Taylor

 

Time : 9 minutes 52.9 secs

Distances : 1 1/2-5-1-6-12

Owned by J Douglas

Trained by John Leadbetter at Denholm, Roxburghshire in Scotland - The first Scottish trained winner. 

The Class of 79

ALPENSTOCK

ALVERTON - Won 4 hurdle races and 5 chases between Oct 73 & Mar 79. Extremely versitile individual who ws useful on the flat (won six times in 1976) and was a smart hurdler too (ran unplaced in both Irish Sweeps Hurdle and Imperial Cupin 1976-77. Was a revelation over fences winning the Arkle Trophy at the Festival in 1978 and in 1979 won the Greenall Whitley Breweries Chase at Haydock. Culminated with a twenty five length win in a snowstorm in the 1979 Gold although he was upside the gallant Tied Cottage at the last fence when the latter fell. Was thrown in at 10-13 for the National and it was right for him to take his chance. Sadly when still up with the leaders and travelling well he hit the top of Bechers second time and he fell and broke his neck.

CARTWRIGHT - New Zealand bred who won twice over hurdles in his native land in 1975. Finished fourth behind the lgendary Lanzarote in the 1976 Kingwell Hurdle at Wincanton on his UK debut. Won four times in total, the highlight being victory in the 1977 Swedish Grand National at Stromsholm (he also run in France that year). Was behind whe he was brought down at the Chair in the National. He didn't win again but ran in the 1980 Foxhunters finishing seventh when partnered by future National hero Dick Saunders.

DOUBLE NEGATIVE - Won a hurdle in Ireland and 11 chases between 1975 & 1982. Useful novice finishing fourth in 1976 Sun Aliiance Chase. His best year was in 1977 when he won four times including at the Cheltenham Festival when he won the Kim Muir. He never completed a circuit in two Nationals, a fall when in contention at the tenth in 1978 was followed by a first fence exit the following year. He was one of the two loose horses to cause the problems at the Chair that year. e later won two hunter chases in 1981.

FLITGROVE - Won 3 hurdles and 2 chases between 1975 & 1980. Useful novice hurdler and looked to have a promising future over fences when he landed the 1977 Scilly Isles Novices Chase at Sandown. True it did not have the importance then that id does now but despite disappointing in the Arkle and Mildmay Chase there were high hopes. It didn't tuen out that way and he only won one more time at Leicester in 1978. He nearly got round at Aintree and a year later did complete a ciruit of the National course albeit in rear in the Topham. He did not raceunder rules again.

KICK ON - A very tough individual who was kept busy in a ten season career between 1971 & 1981. His first four seasons over timber yielded little but he fared better over fences winning ten times, the highlight being a hard fought win in the 1978 Midlands Grand National. He also ran well in that years Topham eventually finishing fourth. He won a total of four races at Uttoxeter. After his National excursions he was kept busy running seventeen times during the 1979-80 season. He was still going at the age of fourteen. The sort of horse you would love to own.

KINTAI - Very useful when trained in Ireland winning a number of hurdle and chases, the most important being the 1978 Thyestes Chase at Gowran Park. Was running only his fourth race for his new British connections in the National when tragedy struck. Hampered at the Chair he literally ran headfirst into the ditch, suffered spinal injuries and he was desrtoyed.

LORD BROWNDODD - Won 5 hurdles in Ireland and 4 chases in the UK between 1973 & 1981. Quite a useful chaser in his early days in the UK winning three times at Newbur and finished second behind Churchtown Boy in the 1977 Topham. Finished in one National and broke a blood vessal on his second attempt. Later ran in hunter chases and finished fifth in the 1980 Foxhunters.

MR SNOWMAN 

OSKARD - Polish bred who had won on the flat in Poland and also won over jumps in Scandanavia and France. Won three times in 1978-79 and benefited from a walkover at Sandown. At Aintree he unseated at first Bechers but continued riderless. He was easily spotted in his green blinkers and he actually finished first past the post (but he did not jump every fence). Never seen out again and listed as "dead" in that years Timeform Chasers & Hurdlers.

PRIME JUSTICE - Only ever won 2 chases in a four season career and one of those was very fortunate. Stating at 33-1 in a novice chase at Warwick in 1978 he was a remote third when the leader (future Queen Mother winner) Another Dolly fell two out and the horse left in front refused at the last. Completely outclassed in the National he plodded round in his own time and was a very distant last of the seven finishers. So distant that he never got a mention by any of the commentators. He never raced again.

PURDO - Won 1 chase in the UK between Dec 77 & Mar 84 New Zealand bred won in his native country and was second in their Grand National in 1977. En-route to the UK he won a chase at Merano in Italy. Was immediately put in at the deep end as his first UK Chase was the King George VI Chase and to be fair he equipped himself. He was nothing more than an verage chaser his oly success coming in a three horse race at Huntingdon in Nov 1978. He was leading when he fell at first Bechers in the National. He stayed in training until he was thirteen latterly in hunters chases. He last ran at Newbury in March 84.

RAMBLING ARTIST - Won a chase in the UK between 1978 & 1982. Ex-Irish chaser sole win in the UK came in a coselfought finish in the Rowland Meyrick Chase in 1978. He was very lightly raced after his Aintree exploits and was clearly difficult to train. He was last seen finishing in the rear in the 1982 Eider Chase at Newcastle.

RED EARL

SAND PIT

THE CHAMP - Won 2 chases in the UK on his sole season here in 1978-79. Was a top class chaser in Australia winning n 9 times including the Great Eastern steeplechase. On his way to the UK he won one of Europes top chases the Gran Premio di Merano in Italy and a race in Switzerland. Even after his arrival to the UK he was not done with globe trotting as he was sent to the USA to contest the Colonial Cup (he finished unplaced behind stable companion Grand Canyon). He was brought down at the Chair at Aintree and raced one more time finishing unplaced in the Golden Miller Chase at Cheltenhams April meeting

VINDICATE - Won 5 chases between Apr 71 & 79. His National attempt came late at the age of twelve and he was having his first race for his new Irish connections. Their experience was brief -  first fence fall.

WAGNER - Came from the pointing field, winning a point in 1975 but missed the next two years. Won three times during his first season under rules in 1977-78. Never won again but ran a blinder in the National, up with the pace throughout before fading after two out to finish fifth. He put up another solid performance on his next trip to Aintree finishing sixth in the 1982 Topham. 

WAYWARD SCOT - Won a hurdle and 6 chases between 1973 & 1981. When he won he did it from the fromt nd ws quite a useful chaser in his younger days. Won a valuable novice chase at Ascot in 1976 and won both his starts in the autumn of 1976 making all the running both times. Injured himself in that second autumn win and was not as good thereafter although he won his first start in 1977 at Newbury again making all. First fence faller in 1979 National bit did win his next start t Uttoxetr in May.