The Top 10 Grand National Winners In History

The Top 10 Grand National Winners In History

It’s one of the most prestigious – not to mention richest – renewals in UK horse racing.

There will be plenty looking to join the long list of winners in the race’s history this year, with the Grand National odds 2022 suggesting that Delta Work – a victor at the recent Cheltenham Festival – and the defending champion Minella Times could be amongst the most likely.

So who are the most impressive winners in Grand National history? Here’s our top 10.

10. Minella Times

While time will tell how good Minella Times truly is, he deserves his place on this list due to the history he helped to create.

Rachael Blackmore became the first female jockey in history to win the Grand National in 2021, and she followed up by prevailing in the Cheltenham Gold Cup just under a year later.

9. Peter Simple

A 15-year-old horse is a veritable pensioner in racing terms, but that didn’t stop Peter Simple.

He became the oldest Grand National champion at that age in 1853 – a record that will surely never be beaten – having won the race four years earlier too.

8. Hedgehunter

But for a quirk of fate, Hedgehunter could have joined Red Rum on the list of three-time Grand National champions.

He won in 2005 having been well placed a year earlier, agonisingly falling at the final fence. And then, in 2006, he finished a single length behind Numbersixvalverde in second.

7. Many Clouds

Many Clouds was so good that he now has a race named after him at Aintree – thanks largely to his 2015 win in the Grand National.

That earned him the British Jump Racing Horse of the Year prize and backed up a pair of wins in the high-profile Cotswold Chase.

6. Manifesto

At the turn of the 20th century, Manifesto achieved a record that still stands to this day.

He became the first horse to appear in eight different editions of the Grand National and won two of those – the first, in 1897, by a handsome 20 lengths, and the second despite losing his footing at the Canal Turn fence.

The Top 10 Grand National Winners In History

5. Mr Frisk

The astonishing run of Mr Frisk in the 1990 Grand National remains a slice of sporting brilliance.

He won the race in a time of 8:47, which broke Red Rum’s previous record. Not only that, it’s a time that remains the best to this day – despite the fact that the Aintree course is now 312m shorter!

4. Tiger Roll

There’s no doubt that Tiger Roll is the finest Grand National horse of the modern era.

He won the race in 2018 and 2019, and was denied the chance of an incredible hat-trick – and levelling Red Rum’s trio of victories in the Grand National – by the 2020 crisis.

A five-time winner at the Cheltenham Festival, Tiger Roll is one of the best steeplechasers the sport has ever seen.

3. Golden Miller

It’s hard to comprehend how a horse can win the Cheltenham Gold Cup – considered the playground of the best three-milers in racing – and then follow up by triumphing in the Grand National in the very same year.

But that’s exactly what Golden Miller achieved in 1934, which sandwiched four other wins in the Gold Cup. A statue of the incredible horse still stands in Cheltenham to this day.

2. L’Escargot

There are plenty of two-time Grand National winners, but a horse with just a sole win to his name in the race is also right up there with the best.

L’Escargot defeated Red Rum in his prime in 1975, having finished second to the eventual three-time champion just 12 months earlier. The Irish horse downed the popular chestnut horse by 15 lengths in an extraordinary run.

Raymond Guest’s stayer was also a two-time winner of the Cheltenham Gold Cup, joining Golden Miller in that illustrious company.

1. Red Rum

Considered one of the greatest National Hunt horses in history, Red Rum prevailed in the Grand National on an unprecedented three occasions.

It was his first win that is best remembered – Ginger McCain’s horse was a full 30 lengths adrift of the leaders at one stage, but rallied and finished the famous Aintree course in a then-record time.

Red Rum won the Grand National in 1973, 1974 and 1977, and also finished second in 1975 and 1976. He truly is the greatest horse in the race’s history.

Author: Gus Barge

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