AINTREE

  Badges through the decades

Brief History

1576

Earliest record of racing in the Liverpool area, with a meeting taking place at Crosby.

1765

Record of race meetings taking place at Ormskirk.

1815

Ormskirk races are abandoned after this date.

1820’s

Evidence of organized racing in the vicinity of Aintree at Maghull.

1828

The Tradesman’s Cup is run at Maghull and was later replaced by the Liverpool Summer Cup

1830

Racing still takes place at Maghull, but there is also a race meeting at Aintree.

1835

A Liverpool publican, William Lynn, leased the Aintree racecourse from Lord Sefton and organizes 3 meetings.. This effectively spelled the end of racing at Maghull.

1837

A race takes place at Aintree over a cross-country course of about 5 miles. The race was won by The Duke, which is seen by many as the first Grand National winner.

1839

One of the most famous incidents at Aintree occurred when Captain Beecher fell from his horse Conrad and landed in a brook adjacent to a fence. From this date the fence, the 6th and 22nd fence in the Grand National, became known as Beecher’s Brook. The race was won by an appropriately named horse called Lottery.

1843

The Grand National becomes a handicap, being known as ‘The Liverpool and National Steeplechase’, and is won by Vanguard ridden by Tom Oliver. He had gained earlier success in the race in 1842 on Gay Lad, and went on to gain success in 1953 on Peter Simple, who had already won the race once in 1849. Edward William Topham becomes clerk of the course.

1847

The great race finally becomes known as the Grand National Handicap Steeplechase.

1848

Aintree racecourse is leased to the Tophams.

1856

Jockey George Stephens gains his first success in the National and later went on to record 4 more successes to become the most successful jockey in the Grand National.

1857

The 10-1 Emigrant wins the National but only after there were 7 false starts.

1868

The Lamb becomes the first grey to win the National and repeats the success 3 years later.

1893

The 40 length margin by which Cloister wins the National remains the widest margin. He had already managed to finish second on two previous occasions.

1895

A horse called Manifesto runs in the National for the first time and finishes fourth.

1897

Manifesto goes on to win the National for the first time.

1899

Carrying a record breaking top weight of 12st 7 lbs, Manifesto wins the race for a second time.

Liverpool 1927.JPG (11243 bytes)

 

1900

Ambush II wins the National to become the only Royal winner to date, being owned by the Prince of Wales.

1902

Manifesto, by now a 14 year old, still competes in the National and has to carry 12st 8 lbs. Ridden by Ernest Piggott, the great horse still manages third place behind Shannon Lass.

1904

Moifaa wins the National after surviving being thrown overboard on its journey from New Zealand. The water jump posed little threat given that it had swum 50 miles to reach the starting gate.

1915-18

No steeplechasing at Aintree during the War years, but the National still takes place albeit at Gatwick.

1919

Poethlyn, the 11/4 favourite, wins the post War National in the hands of Ernie Piggott, the grandfather of Lester Piggott.

1929

Gregalach, at 100-1, wins the National and sees off the largest number of rivals in a field of 66.

1935

Reynoldstown wins the National and repeats the feat in 1936.

1949-2005

The history of the Topham Trophy is a booklet written by Paul Davies and is available via www.thecompleterecord.co.uk

topham tcr.JPG (113233 bytes)

1956

ESB wins the National at 100-7 ridden by Dave Dick, but it must have been one of the least popular winners given that Devon Loch mysteriously slipped in the shadow of the winning post when ridden by Dick Francis and was owned by the Queen Mother.

1961

Nicholas Silver becomes only the second grey to triumph in the National.

1972

The Spring Festival meeting is the only one held each year at Aintree for the next 20 years.

1973

The first of Red Rum’s 3 famous National victories sees him catch the gallant top-weight Crisp on the line.

1982

Although Cheers does not win the National he does complete the course in the hands of Geraldine Rees, the first lady rider to do so.

2004

Ginger McCain waits 27 years before training his fourth Grand National winner Ashleigh House at 16-1.

Liverpool 1935.JPG (11339 bytes)

Liverpool 1947.JPG (12576 bytes)

Liverpool 1956.JPG (12268 bytes)
Liverpool 1997.JPG (19573 bytes)