Grand National Ultimate History



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7th/23rd - 5' H (was 5' 6").


Fr 30 Mar 1900 (3.36) 4m 4f Good 10.01.40 16 £1,975 HRH The Prince of Wales

99 1 Ambush 6 11-03 T. Lushington A. Anthony 4/1   Away well & prominent 1st then settled in mid-division until headway to be 5th (of 13) WJ. Very prominent 2C, led briefly twice: at CT & ABC. Regained lead for good after 29th and 2L ahead last. Increased margin of victory in final 100yds when closest pursuer eased.
98 99 2 Barsac 8 9-12 B. Bletsoe W. Halsey 25/1 4 Away well & very prominent 1st. Led by BB 1C. Joined CS 1C and 2nd ABC. Led again Chair and not headed until BB 2C. Rather one-paced and lost position, 4th ABC & 29th. 3rd last and ran on well final 100yds to snatch 2nd from easing rival.
95 96 97 99 3 Manifesto 12 12-13 W. Moore G. Williamson 6/1 NK Initially held up towards rear. Mid-division WJ. Steady headway from BB 2C to be 3rd ABC. Led well before 29th. Headed before last where 2L down. Fought on gamely until rider accepted defeat and eased in last 100yds, losing 2nd.
  4 Breemount's Pride 7 11-07 Marnes G. Davies 20/1   Always towards rear 1C. Good progress to lead BB 2C and quickly went clear. Advantage soon narrowed and briefly headed CT. Passed for good just before ABC where 2nd. 3rd at 29th. Faded.
  5 Levanter 10 9-08 T. McGuire T. McGuire 50/1   Away well but soon dropped to rear, adrift at times and jumped slowly. No factor but kept on very dourly, passing beaten horses. Never nearer.
98 6 Grudon 10 10-05 B. Bletsoe M. Bletsoe 40/1   Away well & prominent 1st, 4th WJ. Chasing leaders, rather one-paced, CS 2C when bad mistake and rider contrived to get his leg entangled in bridle, 5th ABC. Faded.
  7 Easter Ogue 6 9-13 H. Escott C. Hogan 66/1   Away well. Very prominent for a spell after BB 1C. Gradually lost position and 7th WJ. Little impact 2C and beaten by 29th. Plodded on.
97 99 8 Lotus Lily 10 9-11 J. Walley A. Wood 25/1   Slowly away. Became increasingly prominent after BB 1C, 3rd ABC 1C. Took 2nd BB 2C. Began to fade CS, 6th ABC. Weakened further after 29th.
  9 Sister Elizabeth 7 10-00 Cpt D. Beatty C. Clack 40/1   Mid-division 1C. Headway early 2C, 6th BB. Lost place CS and further weakened before 29th.
  10 Model 7 10-07 E. Woodland P. Woodland 66/1   Led from 1st to BB 1C then dropped into the anonymity of midfield. Began to fade from mid-division CS 2C and became completely tailed off after 29th.
99 11 Elliman 9 10-01 G. Marsh E. Driscoll 100/7   Never better than rear of mid-division and last by WJ. Well behind by CT 2C and finished utterly tailed off.
96 F Alpheus 9 10-10 J. Elsey A. Waddington 40/1 23RD Became prominent by BB 1C, 5th ABC 1C. Only a mid-division 8th WJ and no discernible progress when fell 23rd.
  B Hidden Mystery 6 12-00 Sir C. Nugent H. Nugent 75/20F 17TH Slowly away but became very prominent by BB 1C and vied for lead CS 1C, travelling & jumping well. Led ABC 1C. Headed Chair but remained 2nd until BD by a loose horse (Covert Hack) 17th.
96 97 98 F Barcalwhey 10 10-00 J. Cannon T. Lane 20/1 16TH (WJ) Prominent. 6th ABC 1C and in similar position when fell WJ.
  F Covert Hack 6 11-00 T. Lushington Tich Mason 100/6 1ST Prominent, fell 1st.
  RO Nothing 9 9-11 W. Holt W. Hoysted 100/1 1ST Slow into stride & last until caught sight of 1st whereupon bolted & ran out.



The first Grand National of the new century being won by a horse owned by the future King (Edward VII) provided a nice boost for the race and, therefore, steeplechasing as a whole. The good cheer eminating from the victory of Ambush was an especially timely tonic because Britain (and Ireland) were embroiled in the Boer War although, ironically, the royal winner shared his name with the Boers' preferred method of combat! Ambush was trained, Tommy Lushington supervising, at Henry Linde's old place (Eyrefield Lodge) and carried the tremendous dual-purpose jockey Algy Anthony to his sole National success. The pace was average, there is no indication that the going was on the easy side of Good, allowing a rare tubed runner Breemount's Pride to surge into a clear lead at one stage. Barsac was allowed to dictate much of the tempo and he improved for not having his suspect stamina exposed, however, Ambush, now a 6-y-o and whom possessed good limbs and feet, took a greater step forward. The effort of Manifesto under a huge burden was gallant. The dual victor had been beaten at levels by Hidden Mystery, made 1900 National favourite now in receipt of 13lb, a month earlier at Hurst Park. Hidden Mystery was unluckily brought down at the 17th thus depriving another renewal in this mini-era of generally below average depth of part of what quality it had. 100/1 shot Nothing was aptly named, and the 7th/23rd, which had been six inches higher than any other fence on the course, inevitably claimed its first victim since 1897 having been reduced in size for 1900.

My feeling, considering the above, is that Manifesto was probably a couple of pounds short, as a 12-y-o, of being capable of reproducing his peak performance of 1899 (rated -19). At the weights in the 1900 Grand National he, nevertheless, emerged 20 (pounds/lengths) superior to Ambush and 43 better than Barsac. I will rate Manifesto -21 and because Williamson was kind to the great horse when the chance of a third triumph had gone the winner and runner-up must have 2 added to their deficits, therefore, Ambush is awarded -43 and Barsac -66.  









Copyright 2017 by Chris Dowling