The Grand National Steeplechase, run at the famous Aintree racecourse in Liverpool England, is one of the most famous races in the world with a history dating back to the 19th century. The race was first run in 1839 as the Grand Liverpool Steeplechase, which later became known as the Grand National. The race gained increased notoriety by the movie National Velvet (1944) which starred Elizabeth Taylor and Mickey Rooney. It is the ultimate test of horse and jockey, run over a grueling 4 miles and 4 furlongs (over 7km), two laps of the course and over 30 fences. Some of the fences are famous in their own right, including Becher’s Brook, The Chair and the Canal Turn.
Over 600 million people worldwide watch the event each year. The race will again attract the best jumpers in the land due to both the fame it brings and the £1 million purse.
Last year’s race was won by 25-1 Many Clouds, ridden by Leighton Aspell and trained by Oliver Sherwood. This year’s classic will be run on April 9th, 2016, and Many Clouds is favourite to repeat at 7/1. Silviniaco Conti and The Last Samuri are equal on the second line of betting at 12/1 while next are Holywell and The Druids Nephew at 16’s followed by Cause of Causes and Goonyella at 20’s. 2016 Grand National betting – pick your horses now. Remember, it is not unusual for horses with long odds getting up to win the race.
Like the Melbourne Cup and the Epsom Derby, the Grand National is a day when workers around the country engage in office sweeps, and once a year punters open their wallets for a flutter with the bookies. Millions of pounds are wagered each year on the Grand National and there are all sorts of betting options including Lucky Dips and Fun Bets. Punters can be fully confident in their investment one minute but in complete despair the next as their horse fails to jump one of the imposing fences. For your horse to complete the course is an achievement in itself. This feeling of unexpected fortune or otherwise makes the race a unique and exciting experience.
Each year in the National, legendary deeds are performed and heroes are made. To win the race requires the utmost in courage, skill and endurance in both horse and rider. Indeed, many horses fail to finish the grueling event. It is not for the feint hearted or the physically immature horse. Horses must be at least 7 years old and most are tough, dour geldings with superior jumping ability.
40 horses and jockeys will line up again this year at Aintree Racecourse to race across the famous fences in front of a 600 million-strong TV audience. The excitement will be pulsating from start to finish as every spectator hopes not only for an epic battle to the line but also a safe journey for all horses and riders.