|Grade 3 race|
|Distance||3m 5½f (5,934 metres)|
|Qualification||Five-years-old and up|
The Welsh National is a Grade 3 National Hunt chase in Great Britain which is open to horses aged four years or older. It is run at Chepstow, Wales, over a distance of about 3 miles and 5½ furlongs (5,934 metres), and during its running there are twenty-two fences to be jumped. It is a handicap race, and it is scheduled to take place each year late December.
The race was first run in 1895, and it originally took place at Ely Racecourse in Cardiff. It remained at this venue until the closure of the course in 1939. After World War II it was transferred to Caerleon in 1948, and it was then moved to its present venue in 1949. Dick Francis, the famous jockey turned author, rode the first Chepstow winner of the race, Fighting Line. David Nicholson, later a successful racehorse trainer, rode three successive Welsh National winners in 1959, 1960 and 1961.
Originally run on Easter Tuesday, it was moved to February in 1969 with the aim of attracting better horses, albeit with the increased risk of bad weather forcing its cancellation. It was moved to the day after Boxing Day in 1979 and since then the class of runners has improved further, making it an informative guide to future races such as the Grand National and the Cheltenham Gold Cup.
Among the winners were Burrough Hill Lad in 1983, who went on to land the Tote Cheltenham Gold Cup less than three months later. Trainer Jenny Pitman had the previous season saddled Corbière to win the Welsh and Aintree Nationals. In the late 80s and early 90s, the race was dominated by Somerset trainer Martin Pipe. Bonanza Boy achieved consecutive successes in 1988 and 1989, and in 1991 the giant Carvill's Hill became one of the easiest winners in the history of the race.
Winners since 1976
|1976||Rag Trade||10||11-02||John Burke||Fred Rimell|
|no race 1977–78|
|1979||Peter Scot||8||10-02||Paul Barton||David Gandolfo|
|1980||Narvik||7||10-11||John Francome||Neville Crump|
|1981||Peaty Sandy||7||10-03||Mr Geordie Dun||Helen Hamilton|
|1982||Corbiere||7||10-10||Ben de Haan||Jenny Pitman|
|1983||Burrough Hill Lad||7||10-09||John Francome||Jenny Pitman|
|1984||Righthand Man||7||11-05||Graham Bradley||Monica Dickinson|
|1985||Run and Skip||7||10-08||Peter Scudamore||John Spearing|
|1986||Stearsby||7||11-05||Graham Bradley||Jenny Pitman|
|1987||Playschool||10||10-11||Paul Nicholls||David Barons|
|1988||Bonanza Boy||7||10-01||Peter Scudamore||Martin Pipe|
|1989||Bonanza Boy||8||11-11||Peter Scudamore||Martin Pipe|
|1990||Cool Ground||8||10-00||Luke Harvey||Reg Akehurst|
|1991||Carvill's Hill||9||11-12||Peter Scudamore||Martin Pipe|
|1992||Run for Free||8||10-09||Mark Perrett||Martin Pipe|
|1993||Riverside Boy||10||10-00||Richard Dunwoody||Martin Pipe|
|1994||Master Oats ||8||11-06||Norman Williamson||Kim Bailey|
|no race 1995–96|
|1997||Earth Summit||9||10-13||Tom Jenks||Nigel Twiston-Davies|
|1998||Kendal Cavalier||8||10-00||Barry Fenton||Nigel Hawke|
|1999||Edmond||7||10-00||Richard Johnson||Henry Daly|
|2000||Jocks Cross||9||10-04||Brian Crowley||Venetia Williams|
|2001||Supreme Glory||8||10-00||Leighton Aspell||Pat Murphy|
|2002||Mini Sensation||9||10-04||Tony Dobbin||Jonjo O'Neill|
|2003||Bindaree||9||10-09||Carl Llewellyn||Nigel Twiston-Davies|
|2004||Silver Birch||7||10-05||Ruby Walsh||Paul Nicholls|
|2005||L'Aventure||6||10-04||Leighton Aspell||Paul Nicholls|
|2006||Halcon Genelardais||6||11-03||Wayne Hutchinson||Alan King|
|2007||Miko de Beauchene||7||10-05||Andrew Thornton||Robert Alner|
|2008||Notre Pere||7||11-00||Andrew Lynch||Jim Dreaper|
|2009||Dream Alliance||8||10-08||Tom O'Brien||Philip Hobbs|
|2010||Synchronised ||8||11-06||Tony McCoy||Jonjo O'Neill|
|2011||Le Beau Bai||8||10-01||Charlie Poste||Richard Lee|
|2012||Monbeg Dude||8||10-01||Paul Carberry||Michael Scudamore|
1 The 1994 running took place at Newbury.
2 The "2010" running took place in January 2011 after the original fixture was postponed due to snow and frost.
4 The "2012" running was run in January 2013 after the original fixture was postponed due to waterlogging.
- Racing Post:
- pedigreequery.com – Welsh National – Chepstow.
- Ladbrokes Pocket Companion 1990/91. Aesculus Press. 1990. p. 46. ISBN 1-871093-21-X.
- Lee, Brian. 2002. The Welsh Grand National. ISBN 0-7524-2728-8
- Chepstow racecourse website
- "Le Beau Bai lands Welsh National victory at Chepstow". BBC Sport. 27 December 2011. Retrieved 27 December 2011.