Yorkshire Times
Weekend Edition
3:00 AM 9th April 2022

Things You Might Not Know About The Grand National

The team at have put together 10 facts about the Queen and her horses.

1. Queen Elizabeth II has been riding since she was 4 years old, when her father King George VI gave her a Shetland pony named Peggy.

2. The Queen Mother was an avid National Hunt Racing fan, Princess Anne and her daughter Zara Phillips both became top event riders and the Princes William and Harry both play polo.

3. All the horses that you see in the royal parades are kept at the Royal Mews at Buckingham Palace, “one of the finest working stables in existence.” The Queen names each horse.

4. The Royal Mews is where they keep all the carriages, coaches and cars used by the Queen.

5. The Queen is famous for always riding without a helmet.

6. The Queen owns many racehorses, having initially inherited the breeding and racing stock from her father King George VI.

7. As of 2013, horses owned by the Queen have won over 1600 races. She has had winners in all of the British Classics except the Grand National.

8. Queen has actually made £7.6 million from her race winnings.

9. Monty Roberts AKA The Horse Whisperer has trained the Queens horses since 1989. He has been honoured by the Queen and is a honorary member of the Royal Victorian Order. They have shared a close friendship since he began training her horses. She even named a Corgi after him.

10. The Queen breeds Thoroughbreds, fell ponies, Shetland ponies and Highland ponies.

Facts about the Grand National

The queen has never won the Grand National race.

The Queen is said to have had her first riding lesson at the age of three, so it is fair to say the Queen’s love for horses started at a very young age.

In 1952 King George VI died, and the Queen inherited the throne and also her father’s breeding and racing horses.

Every year the Queen's favourite event is said to be Royal Ascot.

The Queen’s own horses have competed in many races over the years, and, on 71 occasions, have even won the event.

The royal family has played a huge role in owning, training and riding horses at the Grand National racing event.

With over one thousand horse racing victories it is a shame they have never won a Grand National.

The closest chance of winning the Grand National was when Devon Loch had a five-length lead over his nearest challenger and inexplicably fell on the final straight, just 40 yards from a certain victory.

Here are some interesting Grand National racing facts and figures from previous years:

When was the first Grand National race?

The first-ever Grand National race took place on Tuesday 26 February 1839 and attracted a field of 17 runners.
According to historical Grand National Stats, the first race was held in 1839 and was called the Grand Liverpool Steeplechase which later became known as the Grand National.
The first Grand National race was held at Aintree Racecourse near Liverpool, England and the horse called Lottery won the racing event.

What was the largest field ever assembled for the Grand national?

The largest field ever assembled was 66 horses in the 1929 Grand National race.
The 1929 Grand National featured the most starters in the race when 66 runners lined up.
The safety limit for the 2022 Grand National is 40 runners and there will never be another time the field will be so large and have 66 runners for health and safety reasons.

What was the smallest field of runners in Grand National History?

The smallest field of runners was in 1883 when just 10 horses faced the starter for the Grand National race.
The media in 1883 baulked at the idea of running in the Grand National and claimed the Grand National obstacles were too small.
The 1883 Grand National was acknowledged to be a poor renewal, lacking strength in depth and Zoedone won the race in a slow 11 minutes 39.0 seconds time.

How heavy is a Grand National horse?

A Grand National horse can weigh up to a maximum of 12 stone 7 pounds (175 pounds).
The Grand National Weights are determined by the horse’s official rating as the racing event is a handicap race.
Any horse who carries a top weight of over 12 stone and wins the Grand National is an exceptional horse.

Grand National Winner Statistics

When looking back in history and researching the grand national winner stats you understand the heritage of the famous Grand National event.

Here are the winning statistics of the Aintree Grand National.

Which trainer has won the most Grand Nationals?

The horse racing trainer with the highest amount of Grand National winners are:

George Dockeray – 4 wins
Fred Rimell – 4 wins
Ginger McCain – 4 wins
Which horse won the most Grand Nationals?
The horse with the highest amount of Grand National wins is Red Rum.

Red Rum won the Grand National three times in 1973, 1974 and 1977 to make him the most successful horse in Grand National history.

The most grand national wins are Red Rum, winning the Grand National three times.

Which horse holds the record for the fastest Grand National?

Mr Frisk is the horse who holds the fastest winning time for grand national victory in 1990.
The fastest ever time is the 8 minutes 47.8 seconds by Mr Frisk who was trained by Kim Bailey and ridden by Mr Marcus Armitage.
The fastest record time to complete the Grand National course in 8m 47.8s is the only winning horse in the history of the Grand National to ever run under nine minutes.
The slowest time was in the first Grand National back in 1839 when it took Lottery 14m 53s to win the race.
The grand national winning times over the past decade have been an average of 9 minutes and 10 seconds (9m 10s).

Which horse was the shortest-priced winner of the Grand National?

The shortest-priced winner in Grand National history was Poethlyn at 11-4 in 1919.

Poethlyn had won the ‘War National’ (an unofficial substitute for the Grand National), run the previous year.
Then was sent off at an 11-4 short odds favourite to back up that win and he did so in fine style winning by eight lengths.

How many female horses have won the grand national?

There have been 13 female horses winning the Grand National.

The most recent mare was Nickel Coin back in 1951, but in Grand National history a total of thirteen mares have won the Grand National race.

Who is the oldest grand national winner?

The oldest age to win the Grand National is 15 years old.
In oldest Grand National winner in history was recorded in 1853 when Peter Simple won at the age of 15.
Peter Simple is the eldest horse to ever win the Grand National aged fifteen.

Has a grey horse ever won the Grand National?

There have been 4 times a grey horse has won the Grand National.
Three different grey horses have won the Aintree Grand National as The Lamb won it twice in 1868 and 1871.

The 3 different grey horses to secure victory in the Grand National a total of 4 times are:

The Lamb (1868 and 1871)
Nicolaus Silver (1961)
Neptune Collonges (2012)
Which jockey has won the most grand nationals?
The jockey who has won the most Grand Nationals is George Stevens.

With a total of five wins, the most successful jockey in the whole history of the Grand National remains George Stevens.

The final triumph came in 1870 for George Stevens to secure his fifth victory.

Grand national winning distances?

After racing over 4 miles 2f and jumping 30 obstacles it is an amazing Grand National stat that the average winning distance is 3 lengths.
Many would predict long-distance winning margins in the Grand National but the handicapper has done a great job to minimise the grand national winning distances.

Here are the latest grand national winning distances:

2021 – 6½ lengths
2019 – 2¾ lengths
2018 – head (hd)
2017 – 4½ lengths
2016 – 6 lengths
2015 – 1¾ lengths
2014 – 5 lengths

How many times has the favourite won the grand national?

In the last 50 years, the favourite has won the Grand National 8 times.
Winning the Grand National a total of 8 times gives the favourite an approximate 16% chance of winning on previous data.
Horses who are the shortest price in the betting odds are considered the favourite of the Grand National race.

Grand National Statistics on Finishers

Here are the Aintree Grand National statistics on finishers in the history of the iconic race.
The least finishers to complete the Grand National race was just two horses.
The 1928 Grand National record the smallest number of finishers ever with only two finishing and one of those included 100-1 outsider Tipperary Tim to get second place.

What is the most finishers in the Grand National?

The most finishers to complete the Grand National race was 23 horses.
The 1984 Grand National record the greatest number of finishers ever with 23 finishing and Hallo Dandy was the winner.

How many horses usually finish the grand national?

On average 18 horses usually finish the Grand National.
The race starts with 40 runners and riders and on average more than half do not complete the whole race.
The Grand National statistics show the average percentage to finish is 45% of horses which is 18 out of the 40 who start the race.

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