Irish Grand National

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Irish Grand National
Grade A race
Location Fairyhouse
Co. Meath, Ireland
Inaugurated 1870
Race type Chase
Sponsor Boylesports
Website Fairyhouse
Race information
Distance 3m 5f (5,834 metres)
Surface Turf
Track Right-handed
Qualification Five-years-old and up
Weight Handicap
Purse 250,000 (2014)
1st: €141,000

The Irish Grand National is a National Hunt chase in Ireland which is open to horses aged five years or older. It is run at Fairyhouse over a distance of about 3 miles and 5 furlongs (5,834 metres), and during its running there are twenty-four fences to be jumped. It is a handicap race, and it is scheduled to take place each year on Easter Monday.

It is the Irish equivalent of the Grand National, and it is held during Fairyhouse's Easter Festival meeting.

History[edit]

The event was established in 1870, and the inaugural running was won by a horse called Sir Robert Peel. The race took place at its present venue, and the winner's prize money was 167 sovereigns. In the early part of its history it was often won by horses trained at the Curragh, and there were ten such winners by 1882. The Easter Monday fixture regularly attracted racegoers from Dublin, and it became known as the Dubs' Day Out.[1]

Several winners of the Irish Grand National have also won its English counterpart at Aintree, but none in the same year. The first to complete the double was Ascetic's Silver, the winner of the latter version in 1906. The feat has been achieved more recently by Rhyme 'n' Reason, Bobbyjo and Numbersixvalverde. The most successful horse in the event's history is Brown Lad, a three-time winner in the 1970s.

Since 1991, the distance of the race has been 3 miles and 5 furlongs; previously it had been 3 miles and 4 furlongs.

The Irish Grand National was sponsored by Irish Distillers under various titles for many years up to 2010. Ladbrokes sponsored the race from 2011 to 2013. In 2014, Boylesports took over as Irish Grand National sponsor and appointed the jockey Barry Geraghty as the first ever ambassador for the race, promoting the race through various channels, including social media.[2]

Records[edit]

Most successful horse (3 wins):

  • Brown Lad – 1975, 1976, 1978

Leading jockey (6 wins):


Leading trainer (10 wins):

  • Tom DreaperPrince Regent (1942), Shagreen (1949), Royal Approach (1954), Olympia (1960), Fortria (1961), Kerforo (1962), Last Link (1963), Arkle (1964), Splash (1965), Flyingbolt (1966)

A Unique Racing Record - Only Owner to complete the Derby and Grand National Double

  • William Brophy, Herbertstown House, Two-Mile-House, Naas, Co. Kildare. Farmer, Breeder and Owner

In 1880 William Brophy completed a unique double by owning the winner of both the Irish Derby with King of the Bees and the Irish Grand National with Controller. Also uniquely both winners were out of the same Dam Winged Bee.

Winners since 1960[edit]

  • Weights given in stones and pounds; Amateur jockeys indicated by "Mr", "Mrs" etc.
Year
Winner
Age
Weight
Jockey
Trainer
1960 Olympia 6 09-11 Toss Taaffe Tom Dreaper
1961 Fortria 9 09-12 Pat Taaffe Tom Dreaper
1962 Kerforo 8 10-03 Liam McLoughlin Tom Dreaper
1963 Last Link 7 09-09 Paddy Woods Tom Dreaper
1964 Arkle 7 12-00 Pat Taaffe Tom Dreaper
1965 Splash 7 10-13 Paddy Woods Tom Dreaper
1966 Flyingbolt 7 12-07 Pat Taaffe Tom Dreaper
1967 Vulpine 6 11-06 Matt Curran Paddy Mullins
1968 Herring Gull 6 11-06 John Crowley Paddy Mullins
1969 Sweet Dreams 8 09-10 Bobby Coonan Kevin Bell
1970 Garoupe 6 09-09 Cathal Finnegan Francis Flood
1971 Kings Sprite 9 09-13 Arthur Moore Georgie Wells
1972 Dim Wit 7 10-13 Matt Curran Paddy Mullins
1973 Tartan Ace 6 09-07 Jackie Cullen Tom Costello
1974 Colebridge 10 11-12 Eddie Wright Jim Dreaper
1975 Brown Lad 9 10-05 Tommy Carberry Jim Dreaper
1976 Brown Lad 10 12-02 Tommy Carberry Jim Dreaper
1977 Billycan 7 10-00 Mouse Morris Adrian Maxwell
1978 Brown Lad 12 12-02 Gerry Dowd Jim Dreaper
1979 Tied Cottage 11 10-12 Tony Robinson Dan Moore
1980 Daletta 7 11-04 John Harty Guy Williams
1981 Luska 7 09-09 T. V. Finn Paddy Mullins
1982 King Spruce 8 10-02 Gerry Newman Michael O'Brien
1983 Bit of a Skite 7 09-07 Tommy Ryan Edward O'Grady
1984 Bentom Boy 9 09-09 Mrs Ann Ferris Willie Rooney
1985 Rhyme 'n' Reason 6 10-06 Graham Bradley David Murray Smith
1986 Insure 8 09-07 Mickey Flynn Pat Hughes
1987 Brittany Boy 8 10-10 Tom Taaffe Kelvin Hitchmough
1988 Perris Valley 7 10-00 Brendan Sheridan Dermot Weld
1989 Maid of Money 7 11-06 Anthony Powell John Fowler
1990 Desert Orchid 11 12-00 Richard Dunwoody David Elsworth
1991 Omerta 11 10-09 Adrian Maguire Martin Pipe
1992 Vanton 8 10-11 Jason Titley Michael O'Brien
1993 Ebony Jane 8 10-07 Charlie Swan Francis Flood
1994 Son of War 7 10-10 Francis Woods Peter McCreery
1995 Flashing Steel 10 12-00 Jamie Osborne John Mulhern
1996 Feathered Gale 9 10-00 Francis Woods Arthur Moore
1997 Mudahim 11 10-03 Jason Titley Jenny Pitman
1998 Bobbyjo 8 11-03 Paul Carberry Tommy Carberry
1999 Glebe Lad 7 10-00 Tom Rudd Michael O'Brien
2000 Commanche Court 7 11-04 Ruby Walsh Ted Walsh
2001 Davids Lad 7 10-00 Timmy Murphy Tony Martin
2002 The Bunny Boiler 8 09-09 Ross Geraghty Noel Meade
2003 Timbera 9 10-12 Jim Culloty Dessie Hughes
2004 Granit d'Estruval 10 10-00 Brian Harding Ferdy Murphy
2005 Numbersixvalverde 9 10-01 Ruby Walsh Martin Brassil
2006 Point Barrow 8 10-08 Philip Carberry Pat Hughes
2007 Butler's Cabin 7 10-04 Tony McCoy Jonjo O'Neill
2008 Hear the Echo 7 10-00 Paddy Flood Mouse Morris
2009 Niche Market 8 10-05 Harry Skelton Bob Buckler
2010 Bluesea Cracker 8 10-04 Andrew J. McNamara James Motherway
2011 Organisedconfusion 6 9-13 Miss Nina Carberry Arthur Moore
2012 Lion Na Bearnai 10 10-05 Andrew Thornton Thomas Gibney
2013 Liberty Counsel 10 09-05 Ben Dalton Dot Love
2014 Shutthefrontdoor 7 10-13 Barry Geraghty Jonjo O'Neill

Earlier winners[edit]

  • 1870 – Sir Robert Peel
  • 1871 – The Doe
  • 1872 – Scots Grey
  • 1873 – Torrent
  • 1874 – Sailor
  • 1875 – Scots Grey
  • 1876 – Grand National
  • 1877 – Thiggin-Thue
  • 1878 – Juggler
  • 1879 – Jupiter Tonans
  • 1880 – Controller
  • 1881 – Antoinette
  • 1882 – Chantilly
  • 1883 – The Gift
  • 1884 – The Gift
  • 1885 – Billet Doux
  • 1886 – Castle Lucas
  • 1887 – Eglentine
  • 1888 – The Maroon
  • 1889 – The Citadel
  • 1890 – Greek Girl
  • 1891 – Old Tom
  • 1892 – Springfield Maid
  • 1893 – Thurles
  • 1894 – The Admiral
  • 1895 – Yellow Girl II
  • 1896 – Royston Crow
  • 1897 – Breemount's Pride
  • 1898 – Porridge
  • 1899 – Princess Hilda
  • 1900 – Mavis of Meath
  • 1901 – Tipperary Boy
  • 1902 – Patlander
  • 1903 – Kirko
  • 1904 – Ascetic's Silver
  • 1905 – Red Lad
  • 1906 – Brown Bess
  • 1907 – Sweet Cecil
  • 1908 – Lord Rivers
  • 1909 – Little Hack II
  • 1910 – Oniche
  • 1911 – Repeator II
  • 1912 – Small Polly
  • 1913 – Little Hack II
  • 1914 – Civil War
  • 1915 – Punch
  • 1916 – All Sorts
  • 1917 – Pay Only
  • 1918 – Ballyboggan
  • 1919 – no race
  • 1920 – Halston
  • 1921 – Bohernore
  • 1922 – Halston
  • 1923 – Be Careful
  • 1924 – Kilbarry
  • 1925 – Dog Fox
  • 1926 – Amberwave
  • 1927 – Jerpoint
  • 1928 – Don Sancho
  • 1929 – Alike
  • 1930 – Fanmond
  • 1931 – Impudent Barney
  • 1932 – Copper Court
  • 1933 – Red Park
  • 1934 – Poolgowran
  • 1935 – Rathfriland
  • 1936 – Alice Maythorn
  • 1937 – Pontet
  • 1938 – Clare County
  • 1939 – Shaun Peel
  • 1940 – Jack Chaucer
  • 1941 – no race
  • 1942 – Prince Regent
  • 1943 – Golden Jack
  • 1944 – Knight's Crest
  • 1945 – Heirdom
  • 1946 – Golden View II
  • 1947 – Revelry
  • 1948 – Hamstar
  • 1949 – Shagreen
  • 1950 – Dominick's Bar
  • 1951 – Icy Calm
  • 1952 – Alberoni
  • 1953 – Overshadow
  • 1954 – Royal Approach
  • 1955 – Umm
  • 1956 – Air Prince
  • 1957 – Kilballyown
  • 1958 – Gold Legend
  • 1959 – Zonda Jockey


See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "The Dubs' Day Out". Carlow Nationalist. April 7, 2004. Retrieved 2010-04-05. 
  2. ^ O'Hehir, Tony. "Boylesports to sponsor Irish Grand National". racingpost.com. Retrieved 17 April 2014. 


Further reading[edit]

Peters, Stewart (2007). The Irish Grand National: The History of Ireland's Premier Steeplechase. Stroud: STADIA. p. 144. ISBN 978-0-7524-3691-3. 

Hyland, Francis P M; Williams, Guy St John (1995). Jameson Irish Grand National: a history of Ireland's premier steeplechase. The Organisation. p. 263. ISBN 978-0-9526902-0-7. 

The Sweeney guide to the Irish turf from 1501 to 2001 / by Tony & Annie Sweeney in association with Francis Hyland ; photographs by Caroline Norris ... [et al.].