- 1982 – Argentina invades Falklands Islands
- 1986 – Bomb tears hole in airliner over Greece, killing four people
- 1998 – Former French Cabinet Minister, Maurice Papon, is convicted of deporting Jews during World War II – he was 88 years old. Serving four years in jail, he died in 2007
- 2005 – Pope John Paul II dies
The GN superstar was entered for the 1978 running but was ruled out with a heel injury shortly before the jump.
Red Rum (below) was put down in 1995 and buried near the winning post at Aintree racecourse.
Some other Grand National facts and figures:
- Race was first held in 1839
- Becher’s Brook is named after Captain Becher who fell into the brook during the first running
- Similar to Red Rum, Manifesto won in 1897 and 1899 and was in the first three on six occasions
- Only two horses completed the course in 1928
- The race was abandoned in 1993 after a series of starting errors
- In 1904, New Zealand neddy, Moifaa, won the Grand National after allegedly being shipwrecked off the Irish Coast – story goes that Moifaa swam 25 miles to safety and was found days later. Good tale and far be it for I to let the facts get in the way of a story, it was actually a horse called Kiora who was shipwrecked – and who swam an impressive ‘two miles’ to find landfall – and would subsequently compete in the Grand National without winning. Still, Moifaa was sold to King Edward VII after winning the Grand National and, despite never winning another race, was a favourite of the monarch’s and actually led Ed’s funeral cortege in 1910.
US President Thomas Jefferson (1743), Hans Christian Andersen (1805), Buddy ‘Jed Clampett’ Ebsen (1908), Sir Alec ‘Obi-Wan Kenobi’ Guinness (1914), 3-time World Champion Formula One driver Sir Jack Brabham (1926) and test cricketer Michael Clarke (1981).
“The Force will be with you, always”
“Who is more foolish? The fool, or the fool that follows it?”
- Sir Alec Guinness