This race will long be remembered as one of the most exciting in the races long, illustrious history, not only for the dramatic way in which Red Rum overhauled Crisp, or for the sympathy everyone seemed to have for the long-time leader, but most of all for the emergence of the greatest Grand National horse of all time. At the head of the market were Crisp and Red Rum, the punters unable to separate them at 9/1 joint favourites. Richard Pitman, aboard Crisp, was determined to make it a strong gallop and, by the time the field had reached The Chair in the home straight first time around, Crisp already had a commanding lead, especially as his closest pursuer, Grey Sombrero, fell at The Chair. Well into the second circuit Crisp looked unstoppable, holding a 30 length lead over Becher’s final time round, his closest rival once again coming to grief. However, it was clear that the lightweight Red Rum, with Brian Fletcher on board, was making ground rapidly approaching the final fence. With 23lb more to carry than his rival, Crisp started to falter on the 494 yard run-in despite still holding a 15 length lead.
It’s over to Peter O’Sullevan to describe the final stages of a dramatic Grand National.
‘Just a furlong to run now, 200 yards now for Crisp, and Red Rum is still closing on him! Crisp is getting very tired, and Red Rum is pounding after him. Red Rum is the one who's finishing the strongest. He's going to get up! Red Rum is going to win the National. At the line Red Rum has just snatched it from Crisp!’ In the end Red Rum won by ¾ length in a record time, with L’Escargot 25 lengths back in third.