Lottery (horse)

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Lottery was the winner of the 1839 Grand National Steeplechase at Aintree, near Liverpool, England. Often stated as the first running of this famous race as it was the first to truly attract National interest in the United Kingdom. It was actually recorded by the press of the time as the fourth running but the previous three races failed to capture the imagination and were quickly forgotten. [1]

Lottery was such a good horse that one Victorian commentator claimed he could trot faster than most of his rivals could gallop and it was widely believed that he would have won the National more than once had it not been for an impossible weight burden imposed in 1841 that left him little chance of victory. However that excuse could not be used for the horse's failure to win in 1840 when, without the huge weight burden, he fell at the infamous wall. So worried were some courses that Lottery would scare away the opposition that they framed the conditions of races to stipulate that they were open to any horse bar the winner of the Cheltenham Steeplechase, said horse being Lottery.[2]


  1. ^ Irish Newsletter 1839 records this as the fourth running, the same paper from 1863 onwards records it annually as the first running
  2. ^

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