Which was the first British-trained horse home in the 2021 Grand National?
Following what was termed a ‘greenwash’ at the 2021 Cheltenham Festival, where Irish-trained horses secured a record 23-5 victory over their British-trained counterparts in the Prestbury Cup, the 2021 Grand National proved to be an equally one-sided affair. At Aintree, British-trained horses, including the favourite, Cloth Cap, comprised 22 of the 40-strong field field.
However, of those 22 runners, just three – priced at 50/1, 50/1 and 100/1 – completed the course and just one finished in the first ten horses home. Of course, victory went to Minella Times, trained by Henry de Bromhead and ridden by Rachael Blackmore, who made history by becoming the first female jockey to win the Grand National. Minella Times was followed home by stable companion Balko Des Flos, Any Second Now, trained by Ted Walsh, Burrows Saint, trained by Willie Mullins and Farclas, trained by Denise Foster, to complete an Irish 1-2-3-4-5.
The horse that fared best of the British-trained contigent was Blaklion, who had started favourite for the Grand National when a highly creditable fourth behind One For Arthur in 2017, when trained by Nigel Twiston-Davies. Nowadays a doughty 12-year-old, in the charge of Dan Skelton, Blaklion was sent off at 50/1, but ran perfectly respectfully, weakening from the final fence to finish sixth, 37 lengths behind the winner.