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April is an exciting month for horse racing enthusiasts around the world because this is the period when the world’s greatest steeplechase takes place at Aintree Racecourse. Since it offers the best opportunity for online sports betting, one will find Grand National Favourites being animatedly discussed before the event.
Horse racing fans were stunned in 1967 when the most unlikely racehorse managed to win the Grand National. At odds of 100/1, Foinavon looked to have no chance of victory in the prestigious race. Even three jockeys refused the opportunity to ride him at Aintree before John Buckingham took up the challenge. However, the prospects of the Cyril Watkins-owned racehorse dramatically improved when another horse named Popham Down caused mayhem at the 23rd fence.
As almost the whole race came to a standstill with horses refusing and crashing into each other, only Foinavon managed to avoid the chaos because he was far behind everyone else. To the delight of jockey John Buckingham, the Irish racehorse soon established a 30-length lead with just six fences remaining.
Foinavon went on to win easily and entered his name in history books. He didn’t win any other major race, but the incident became so famous that even a fence was officially named after Foinavon in 1984.
Devon Loch is a famous name in the history of Grand National, not because of his victory but because of his failure. He came very close to winning the coveted prize, only to miss out in the end.
The prospects of Devon Loch looked promising in the 1956 Grand National. The Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother-owned racehorse was in good form, having already won two races that season. And his chances of victory further improved when favourite contenders Must and Early Mist fell early.
Devon Loch was greatly impressive for the majority of the race and came on the verge of victory. But then came the highly painful moment for jockey Dick Francis as the horse suddenly jumped into the air and landed on his stomach just 40 yards from the winning post. Thus, Francis was denied the coveted Grand National, despite coming so close to victory. The British jockey couldn’t control his emotions after this failure and burst into tears.
After retiring from racing, he turned to a writing career and earned huge success in this field, with several of his novels becoming international best-sellers.
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