The Grand National, simply, is one of the most famous sporting occasions in the world. An estimated 600 million people will watch the race, taking place this year on April 5th. The legendary race, in which horses must run almost four and a half miles and jump numerous fences along the way, is a truly unique examination for both horse and jockey, which only the very best can win. One of the horses running in this year’s event is the fan-favourite Long Run, who won the Cheltenham Gold Cup in 2011. A win in the Grand National would cement his reputation as one of the very best.
The first official Grand National took place in 1839 and was won by a horse named Lottery. This has since become an apt description of the race itself, with any horse, no matter its odds, able to take victory on the day.
The race’s home is Aintree racecourse, close to the city of Liverpool, which in itself is one of Britain’s most vibrant cities. The racecourse will attract around 150, 000 spectators over the course of the three-day Grand National festival, and will include not only the world class horse racing, but a variety of other entertainment too.
With a wide selection of dining options, from quick bites to luxury fine dining, Aintree has something to cater for all tastes. This can range from simple entry to the racecourse, all the way up to VIP private boxes. There truly is something for everyone at Aintree.
Aside from the racing, one of the most unique social events, Aintree Ladies’ Day, will take place on Friday 4th April. This day is like no other, with all female race goers creating some wonderful outfits, making for a colourful and exciting social event.
Finally, the race itself is always a breathtaking spectacle, with the eventual winner writing their name into record books which include such illustrious names as Red Rum and Manifesto. Those in attendance may wish to have a bet on the race, and the favourite for this year’s event is currently Teaforthree, priced at 12/1 with Coral.
Getting to The Festival
Aintree is conveniently situated for spectators, with excellent train links from the racecourse’s own station to Liverpool Lime Street. There are also extensive road links, with the M62 and M6 motorways nearby linking race goers to the rest of the UK. For those travelling from overseas, both Manchester International Airport and Liverpool John Lennon Airport are less than an hour away.
So, if you fancy witnessing a truly astounding sporting and social spectacle, the Grand National at Aintree is a day that will never be forgotten.