The Most Famous Steeplechase In The World
The Grand National has been held in Aintree, Liverpool since 1839, when a horse named Lottery won the great race's first running, with more than just a hint of foreshadowing.
Since then, the world's greatest steeplechase has survived wars, bomb scares, false starts, the banning of the BBC, a famous horse pile-up, the threat of extinction and protests. Despite all of that, it has been mimicked at any number of tracks in numerous countries. A 'National' has become a name given to a race over a longer distance than the norm.
The original and best has undergone numerous modifications to its more treacherous obstacles, as well as the shortening of the race distance itself and many more safety factors than were apparent for much of the race's wonderful and absorbing history.
The Grand National is the race that draws the nation together. Young and old, racing fan or not, everyone has a story to tell about the time they won, or nearly won betting on the world's greatest steeplechase.
Where is the Grand National held?
Currently, the Grand National is held annually in April (that has not always been the case) at Aintree racecourse, a suburb of the city of Liverpool.
Aintree's first ladies
Rachael Blackmore rides Minella Times to victory in the Randox Grand National Handicap Chase during Grand National Day of the 2021 Randox Health Grand National Festival at Aintree Racecourse, April 10, 2021
Women did not ride in the Grand National until Charlotte Brew got the mount on Barony Fort in 1977, though the partnership failed to complete the course.
The first women to achieve that distinction was Geraldine Rees on Cheers in 1982.
Trainer Jenny Pitman then re-wrote history, sending out Corbiere to win the 1983 renewal under Ben de Haan. A wonderful handler of horses, Pitman, the former wife of jockey-turned-broadcaster Richard, went on to train Royal Athlete to win the 1995 Grand National under Jason Titley and also had the first past the post, Esha Ness, in the void race of 1993.
Venetia Williams, who had ridden in the race herself, has thus far been the only other woman to train the winner of the Grand National. She achieved the feat with 100/1 shot Mon Mone, under Liam Treadwell, in 2009.
Despite that, chances for female riders in the race were limited, especially on better-fancied horses.
Katie Walsh began to change that and became the first woman to be placed, when she partnered Seabass to be third behind Neptune Collonges, in 2012.
The pairing was then made favourite to win in 2013, making Walsh the first woman to ride a Grand National market leader. However, this time they could only finish 13th.
By 2018 Walsh, who now had a ride every year in the great race, was joined by an improving young fellow-Irishwoman by the name of Rachael Blackmore. Although Blackmore fell at The Chair that day on Alpha Des Obeaux and Walsh was on board the last of 12 finishers, Baie Des Iles, things were about to change.
Blackmore completed for the first time in 2019, finishing 10th on Valseur Lido. Then, after there was no race in 2020 due to the pandemic, she hit the jackpot in 2021.
With spectators still not allowed at the venue because of Covid-19 restrictions, Blackmore didn't receive the 'live' acclaim that so many others had but that surely did not sour her feelings on crossing the line on Minella Times, as the first female to ride the winner of the Grand National.
How to get to Aintree Racecorse
The racecourse can be accessed by rail, with Aintree station being situated directly opposite the racecourse. You can catch a connection to there from Liverpool's Lime Street station. For those travelling by road, the nearest motorway is the M57, which runs close by.
Buying Grand National Tickets
The race that stops not only a nation but millions from around the world. It is the pinnacle of jump races and steeped in a long and colourful history. The Grand National is consequently unlike any other race. Witness the speed, strength and thundering hooves of 40 of the world’s most agile horses for yourself in 2024!
Picking Acommodation For The Grand National
When looking for accommodation for your visit to watch the reds there are a number of things to consider including location in realtion to transport links to Anfield and of course value for money and the accommodations reputation.
International Inn is located in the heart of Liverpool ciy centre and is the perfect choice for football fans looking to tak in a game. Having been operating for over 20 years International Inns staff have a wealth of experience of hosting vistitors to the city and have local knowledge that is second to none.
In terms of affordability Internaional Inn has 3 different kinds of accomodation:-
For Tourists & Backpackers
With accommodation for up to 100 people in dorms for 2, 4, 6, 8 & 10 and facilities which include TV lounge/games room, laundry, baggage store, full heating, free Wi-Fi connection, Internet access and information desk with details of all local attractions on offer in and around Liverpool, we are a tourists dream budget accommodation.
For Tourists & Sightseers who want more
Cocoon Hotel offers visitors to Liverpool a luxury room at a very affordable price, all our rooms have a private bathroom with a shower, plus tea and coffee making facilities if you need a little pick me up 1st thing. Other benefits include a TV, hairdryer and towels & sheets.
(please be aware cocoon rooms do not have windows)
Perfect For Family Weekends or Romantic City breaks
Our fully serviced apartments are ideal for families but are also ideal for couples who want their own privacy. These modern apartments have a kitchen and private lounge area. So why not book today and you'll be safe in the knowledge you can relax after a day of exploring Liverpool's sights.
Aintree Grand National Accommodation
Looking for accommodation for the Grand National?, choose International Inn and secure your accommodation for the big day.
International Inn has been welcoming race goers for over 20 years so you can be safe in the knowledge that your in safe hands during your visit.