2002 Grand National
|Date||6 April 2002|
|Replay of the 2002 Grand National in full Racing UK, YouTube|
The 2002 Grand National (known as the Martell Grand National for sponsorship reasons) was the 155th official renewal of the world-famous Grand National steeplechase that took place at Aintree Racecourse near Liverpool, England, on 6 April 2002.
The race was won by eight-year-old 20/1 shot Bindaree, ridden by Jim Culloty and trained by Nigel Twiston-Davies at Grange Hill Farm in Naunton, Gloucestershire, by a distance of 1¾ lengths from What's Up Boys (10/1) in a time of 10 minutes 3 seconds. The winner was bred by Noel King in County Down, Northern Ireland, and was owned by Raymond Mould.
The field was limited to a maximum of 40 runners, with 11 completing the course. Nine horses fell at the first fence. There were two equine fatalities during the second circuit of the race: Manx Magic at the 20th fence and The Last Fling at the second Canal Turn.
During the live television broadcast of the race on BBC One, watched by 8.6 million people, rival network station ITV1 suffered its lowest ever viewing figures with 300,000 people (a 3% market share) watching an ice hockey match at the same time. BBC Two broadcast a Six Nations rugby international, which retained 900,000 viewers at race time, while 800,000 viewers watched a film on Channel 4.
The long-time ante-post favourite was Moor Lane but his price began to drift as possibility grew that the horse was so far down the handicap that it would not make the cut of forty runners. The other long-time ante-post favourite was Welsh Grand National winner Supreme Glory but the horse was withdrawn a few weeks before the race.
Blowing Wind was sent off as the 8/1 favourite with champion jockey Tony McCoy in the saddle. The pair had been considered unfortunate in finishing a remounted third after being brought down in the previous year's National. The favourite gave his backers a good run for their money and shared the lead with Bindaree until three fences from the finish when he was outpaced to come home in third place.
Ad Hoc was noticed as a good Spring horse when winning the Whitbread Gold Cup the previous April and was ridden by 1999 winning jockey Paul Carberry. Despite several jumping errors, the 10/1 joint-second favourite was lying a close fifth when brought down three fences from home by the falling David's Lad leaving many to regard him as the hard luck story of the race.
David's Lad was a former winner of the Irish Grand National and was well supported to joint-second favourite on the back of the recent successes of Irish National winners and was ridden by Timmy Murphy. The pair moved into the leading contingent early on the second circuit and was still going well in fourth place when falling at the third-last fence.
Paris Pike was the winner of the 2001 Scottish Grand National just a week after that year's Grand National, and was partnered with the winning rider in the prior year's National, Richard Guest. His backers had little to cheer when the 10/1 partnership was severed at the first fence.
What's Up Boys came to prominence when winning the testing Hennessy Cognac Gold Cup but was also quickly picked up as the "housewives' choice" when the once-a-year betting public discovered he was a grey and was bidding to be the first grey to win for over forty years. With Richard Johnson in the saddle the pair went off as joint-second favourites at 10/1 and looked to have the race won when taking the lead from Bindaree over the last fence and going three lengths clear at the elbow before (most unusually in a Grand National) being re-overtaken by Bindaree in the final hundred yards to finish second.
|1st||21||Bindaree||Jim Culloty||8||10-4||20/1||Won by 1¾ lengths|
|2nd||4||What's Up Boys||Richard Johnson||8||11-6||10/1||27 lengths|
|3rd||16||Blowing Wind||Tony McCoy||9||10-6||10/1||9 lengths|
|4th||3||Kingsmark||Ruby Walsh||9||11-9||16/1||17 lengths|
|5th||40||Supreme Charm||Robert Thornton||10||10-0||28/1||3½ lengths|
|6th||22||Celibate||Noel Fehily||11||10-3||66/1||3½ lengths|
|7th||13||You're Agoodun||Johnny Kavanagh||10||10-8||50/1||18 lengths|
|8th||14||Royal Predica||Jimmy McCarthy||8||10-8||80/1||28 lengths|
|9th||12||Streamstown||John McNamara||8||10-8||40/1||13 lengths|
|10th||34||Birkdale||Jason Maguire||11||10-2||50/1||A distance|
|11th||24||Mely Moss||Norman Williamson||11||10-2||25/1||Last to complete|
|27th||6||Ad Hoc||Paul Carberry||8||11-1||10/1||Brought down|
|8||David's Lad||Timmy Murphy||9||11-1||10/1||Fell|
|35||Spot Thedifference||David Casey||9||10-0||33/1||Unseated rider|
|25th||37||Inis Cara||Brian Crowley||10||10-0||66/1||Pulled up|
|24th (Canal Turn)||17||The Last Fling||Richard McGrath||12||10-6||40/1||Fell|
|22nd (Becher's Brook)||10||Majed||Barry Fenton||6||10-11||66/1||Fell|
|20th||32||Ackzo||Dean Gallagher||9||10-0||25/1||Pulled up|
|5||Lyreen Wonder||Barry Cash||9||11-4||40/1||Fell|
|15||Manx Magic||Gerry Supple||9||10-7||100/1||Fell|
|18th||20||Super Franky||Philip O'Brien||10||10-5||66/1||Fell|
|17th||27||Murt's Man||Andrew Thornton||8||10-1||66/1||Pulled up|
|14th||7||Beau||Carl Llewellyn||9||11-1||11/1||Unseated rider|
|9th (Valentine's)||26||Smarty||Tom Scudamore||9||10-1||16/1||Pulled up|
|7th (Foinavon)||25||Gun'n Roses II||Marcus Foley||8||10-2||100/1||Fell|
|6th (Becher's Brook)||2||Alexander Banquet||Barry Geraghty||9||11-11||22/1||Unseated rider|
|5th||19||Frantic Tan||Tom Jenks||10||10-5||50/1||Fell|
|38||Iris Bleu||Paul Moloney||6||10-0||100/1||Fell|
|4th||28||Niki Dee||Russ Garrity||12||10-0||66/1||Fell|
|31||Samuel Wilderspin||Tom Doyle||10||10-0||14/1||Fell|
|9||Paris Pike||Richard Guest||10||10-13||10/1||Fell|
|11||Inn At The Top||Adie Smith||10||10-8||40/1||Fell|
|18||Wicked Crack||Conor O'Dwyer||9||10-5||33/1||Fell|
|23||Struggle's Glory||Ben Hitchott||11||10-3||66/1||Brought down|
|30||Logician||Mark Bradburne||11||10-0||80/1||Brought down|
|33||Red Ark||Kenny Johnson||9||10-0||50/1||Fell|
Winner Bindaree collected a prize of £290,000 for his owner Raymond Mould, while Aintree reported a record attendance in the modern era of 120,000 spectators over the meeting and 63,000 for the National itself. The Tote also recorded an on-course record turnover of £3 million and both they and bookmakers returned good profits from the defeat of the eight most popular horses.
Seven riders made their Grand national debut but their openings were all on outsiders, and none completed the course. Ben Hichott parted company with his mount at the first fence and never took part in the race again. Mark Bradburne also fell at the first while the other rookies were Paul Moloney, Marcus Foley, Barry Cash, Gerry Supple and Philip O'Brien.
Former winner Carl Llewellyn was the most experienced rider in the race, weighing out for a Grand National for the 12th time, though he too failed to complete the course on this occasion on leading contender Beau.
Winning jockey Jim Culloty told the press after the race: "When the second horse came by us I thought, "Jesus, we're beat! But Bindaree's as brave as they come, he stuck his neck out and went down the rails. I couldn't in my wildest dreams ever think about winning the National. In an ideal world I would have wanted to up the tempo from three out, but with the loose horse I was having a nightmare. However, [Bindaree] got me out of jail at the last — he's a brilliant jumper."
Second-placed jockey Richard Johnson said: "I was happy to get round for the first time but it was annoying to be caught on the line. He gave me a good ride and he'll be back next year. When I got after him we flew, but we gave the winner a lot of weight and you can't take anything away from my horse."
Tony McCoy, whose horse came home third, said: "I was a bit disappointed because after last year I thought he was the perfect National horse. He's such a good jumper and so intelligent, but looking back he was happier on the soft ground last year than he was this time round."
Noel Fehily, sixth on Celibate, said "It was a brilliant ride. He was foot-perfect and picking up at the Melling Road. I began to think something good was going to happen, then he got tired."
Streamstown's jockey John McNamara, who finished ninth, said: "He jumped around and gave me a brilliant feel and he even had to jump another horse after the Canal Turn. He has run a blinder really on ground which was much too fast for him."
Norman Williamson, the last to complete the course on Mely Moss, said: "He ran a great race and gave me a brilliant ride. He would have finished about sixth but he fell near the finish and I had to remount."
All three days of the meeting were televised live in the United Kingdom by the BBC with the racing on the Thursday and Friday being broadcast on BBC Two before the main Saturday event which was aired on BBC One. The BBC also broadcast a Grand National special edition of its sporting quiz show A Question of Sport the evening before the race. This was immediately followed by a live race preview show, The Night Before the National, on BBC Two, presented by Clare Balding from the pre-National gala dinner at St. George's Hall in Liverpool.
Coverage on race day itself began at 1:45pm BST and was presented by Sue Barker with interviews and features by Balding, while Angus Loughran followed the betting. It was the 43rd consecutive year the BBC broadcast the Grand National. John Hanmer formed part of the commentary team for the last time, along with Tony O'Hehir and Jim McGrath, who called the horses home for the fifth year.
Richard Pitman, Peter Scudamore and Tony Dobbin provided in-depth analysis of the race in a slow motion re-run offering views taken from cameras located inside the fences and some jockeys' caps as well as an aerial view. Dobbin stepped in at the last moment after Scudamore was overcome with emotion at the result, being the assistant trainer of the winner. Scudamore did however join Pitman and Dobbin halfway through the review.
BBC Radio covered the race for the 71st year, on the Saturday Sport on Five broadcast hosted by Mark Pougatch and Cornelius Lysaght. The radio commentary team was Ian Bartlett, Peader Flanagan and Dave Smith, with Lee McKenzie calling the runners home for the first time.
- Bindaree wins Grand National BBC Sport, 6 April 2002
- ITV stumbles to ratings low The Guardian, 9 April 2002
- Culloty lands dream double The Observer, 7 April 2002
- Grand National: David's Lad hopes for Irish luck Manchester Evening News, 5 April 2002
- Racing: Paris Pike on course to compensate for Aintree The Independent, 11 April 2002
- 2002 Grand National Result Grand National 2002
- What happened to your horse BBC Sport, 6 April 2002
- Runners and riders for National Liverpool Echo, 4 April 2002
- 2002 Grand National YouTube
- Runners and Riders BBC Sport, 12 January 2003
- Starting Prices - The Aintree Martell Grand National - 6 April 2002 Racing Better
- THORNTON THRILLED WITH CHARM Sporting Life
- Every Aintree angle covered BBC Sport, 29 March 2002