Grand National Ultimate History

 

1909

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5th/21st - 4' 10" H (was 5'); 6th/22nd (BB) - fence 4' 11" H (4' 10"); 7th/23rd - 4' 11" H (5'); 11th/27th (OD) - fence 4' 10" H (5'); 13th/29th - 4' 9" H (4' 10").

 

Fr 26 Mar 1909 (3.08) 4m 4f Good (Good to Soft places) 9.53.80 32 £2,400 J. Hennessy

  1 Lutteur 5 10-11 H. Escott G. Parfrement 100/9JF   Away well, 4th at 1st, but soon held up in mid-division on the outside, going nicely & jumping fluently. 15th VB 1C, 14th (of 26) WJ. Mistake BB 2C when hampered by loose horse. 10th at 23rd. Headway CS, 4th ABC. Improved further, displaying good speed, to take lead before 29th. Ran on well, always holding runner-up.
  2 Judas 8 10-10 A. Persse B. Chadwick 33/1 2 Chased leaders until became very prominent in 2nd by BB 1C. Took lead just before VB 1C, went clear with The Lurcher. Left well clear 14th. 10L ahead WJ. Headed briefly BB 2C but regained lead next. Still led ABC. Decisively headed before 29th. Kept on spiritedly.
  3 Caubeen 8 11-07 Lt Col F. Lort-Phillips Tich Mason 20/1 DIST Prominent, 6th BB 1C. Dropped to a fore of mid-division 13th VB 1C. Rallied to be 7th WJ. Same position BB 2C, 5th next and 2nd briefly CT. Dropped to 3rd CS but retook 2nd ABC. Could not go with front pair, 3rd at 29th. Continued to weaken and nearly caught for a bad 3rd.
07 08 4 Tom West 10 10-09 B. Bletsoe H. Murphy 100/6   Away well & very prominent. 3rd at 1st, 4th BB 1C. Dropped to 7th by VB 1C, left 9th at 14th, 11th WJ. Rallied early 2C and much handier again in 5th by BB 2C, 6th next. Tried to go with leading quartet CS but bad mistake 28th & beaten in 5th ABC. Ran on again, 4th at 29th and nearly caught weakening 3rd.
05 5 Hercules 13 9-13 A. Hastings A. Gordon 33/1   Initially mid-division but soon chased leaders, 8th BB 1C, 6th VB 1C. Had dropped to 10th by 14th and a fore of mid-division 12th WJ. 9th BB 2C & 23rd, a beaten 6th ABC. Plugged on dourly, 5th at 29th.
  6 Leinster 11 11-07 J. Rogers J. Rogers 100/6   Away well. 9th BB 1C. Progress to be left 5th at 14th, same place WJ. Had advanced into 3rd by BB 2C, same position 23rd. Began to fade shortly after and quickly lost place. Plugged on past weakening and lame horses after ABC to finish 6th.
  7 Shady Girl 8 10-09 B. Gore G. Clancy 100/9JF   Away well & prominent. 8th VB 1C. good progress along CS 1C and left 2nd at 14th. 10L down in that position WJ. Led briefly BB 2C but jumped violently right 23rd and hampered after landing CT where 3rd. Regained 2nd CS but dropped to 3rd ABC and weakened very badly thereafter.
  8 Carsey 6 10-08 A. Persse J. Kerne 100/1   Chased leaders until became very prominent in 3rd BB 1C. 5th VB 1C and had dropped to 9th by WJ. Handier again 2C, 6th BB, 7th at 23rd. Weakened badly CS.
04 9 Robin Hood 11 9-09 J. Robinson Reggie Walker 33/1   Never a factor in rear of mid-division. 21st WJ. Modest headway 2C.
  10 Phaethon 7 10-04 T. Currid H. Ussher 100/1   Slowly away. Towards rear VB 1C. A rear of mid-division 19th WJ. Further modest progress 2C.
05 06 07 11 Ascetic's Silver 12 12-07 A. Hastings A. Hastings 20/1   Away well. 7th BB 1C, 10th VB 1C, left 7th again at 14th, chased leaders in 8th WJ. Headway early 2C, 4th BB & 23rd. 7th once more and beaten when broke down circa ABC. Eased home.
08 12 Wee Busbie 12 9-13 R. Allison D. Phelan 100/1   Mid-division, 16th WJ. No improvement 2C. Plodded on.
  13 Logan Rock 9 10-00 T. Coulthwaite H. Jackson 50/1   Mid-division, 14th VB 1C. Headway and left 8th at 14th, 10th WJ. Chased leaders determinedly and 8th again BB 2C & 23rd. Thereafter weakened badly.
07 14 Rathvale 8 11-07 A. Hastings W. Morgan 100/1   Mid-division, 16th VB 1C, 17th WJ. No improvement 2C. Plodded on.
  15 Lord Rivers 7 10-06 P. Whitaker W. Bulteel 25/1   Mid-division when very bad mistake 1st, lost 35L & well behind. Never able to fully recover, a rear of mid-division 20th WJ. Finished tailed off.
08 16 Wild Fox(2) 7 9-09 W. Pullen Cpt W. Pallin 100/1   Fore of mid-division when refused 3rd. Kept going, towards rear. 22nd WJ. Laboured on 2C. Tailed off.
  17 Brineoge 10 10-07 F. Withington N. Smyth 100/1   Always towards rear, 23rd WJ. Lumbered on. Tailed off.
  18R Count Rufus 10 10-00 P. Whitaker W. Payne 50/1   Mid-division. Fore of same in 11th VB 1C, 13th WJ. 11th again BB 2C and continued to make steady headway. In with a chance of minor place when fell last. Remounted, well tailed off.
08 19R Red Hall 12 10-12 H. Farrant H. Farrant 50/1   Prominent, 5th at 1st. Fell 3rd. Quickly remounted but towards rear over WJ. Effort to latch onto mid-division circa BB 2C was of no avail and tailed off when fell again last. Remounted once more, well tailed off.
08 F Paddy Maher 9 10-09 T. Currid P. O'Brien-Butler 25/1 30TH Mid-division, rear of same in 18th WJ. No impression 2C and well beaten when fell last.
  F Lord Chatham 6 11-00 J. McKenna J. McKenna 50/1 23RD Soon chased leaders. 12th BB 1C and became very prominent in 3rd by VB 1C. Left 4th at 14th, same position WJ. Began to lose place early 2C, 10th BB. Fell next.
  F Young Buck 10 9-12 Bryan Bletsoe Bryan Bletsoe 100/1 22ND (BB) Away well & chased leaders. A fore of mid-division 12th at VB 1C. Had dropped into a midfield 15th by WJ. Had not arrested decline when fell BB 2C.
  F Davy Jones(1) 6 10-02 R. Smith I. Anthony 100/6 21ST Initially mid-division. Chased leaders in 11th BB 1C, 9th VB 1C. Further progress to be left 6th at 14th, same position WJ. Remained fairly handy until fell 21st.
08 R Mattie Macgregor 7 11-04 R. Smith D. Morgan 100/6 19TH (OD) Away well & very prominent. 2nd at 1st, 5th BB 1C, 4th VB 1C and left 3rd at 14th. Same position WJ. Continuing in similar vein 2C when suddenly refused 19th.
  P Black Ivory 9 10-12 A. Scott A. Scott 100/1 END 1C Towards rear and no impact whatsoever. Called it a day after one tour round.
05 06 07 P Buckaway 11 9-13 S Gilbert R. Wall 100/1 END 1C Slowly away & always towards rear. Well so by WJ and PU at end of 1C.
08 F Rubio 11 11-09 F. Withington B. Bissill 20/1 16TH (WJ) Away well & led almost until the 1st but soon lost position. 10th BB 1C, a mid-division 17th VB 1C. Broke down on landing Chair and fell next.
  F The Lurcher 7 9-09 F. Withington E. Piggott 25/1 14TH Away well & led from shortly before the 1st. Handy advantage BB 1C. Headed just before VB 1C but drew clear with Judas and 2nd when inconvenienced by that horse jumping across path & fell 14th.
  F Domino(1) 7 11-01 F. Hartigan P. Cowley 100/8 9TH (VB) Away well & very prominent 1st. Had dropped into mid-division when fell VB 1C.
  F Wickham 8 10-10 Lt Col F. Lort-Phillips Cpt R. Collis 50/1 9TH (VB) Mid to rear until fell VB 1C.
  P Red Monk 11 10-06 A. Walters E. Morgan 100/1 9TH (VB) Rear of mid-division until very bad mistake CT 1C. PU before next.
  F Rustic Queen 7 12-00 A. Wood A. Wood 50/1 1ST Mid-division, fell 1st.

 

BETRAYER SUBMITS!

Most of the fences on the Grand National course were natural and alive in this era hence the continuous minor variations in their size. There were not at this time any particular bogey fences and I can find no correlation between the overall relative degree of severity of the obstacles and the number of fallers. In 1909 over half of the competitors got round from a field that equalled the biggest numerically to this point, which was probably not unrelated to there having been a 66/1 winner in 1908, and the 19 finishers was a record.

Only two horses, however, were serious contenders from a fair way out and previous winners Ascetic's Silver and Rubio were not among them having both broken down, Bissill on the latter being rather slow to realise so. Judas ran the race of his life but Lutteur cleverly became the fourth chestnut in five years to triumph and he will forever remain the fifth and last 5-y-o to do so, as well as very likely the penultimate entire. In common with many French breds, Lutteur probably reached his peak around his tender age having won five Auteuil chases as a 4-y-o and also, just sixteen days prior to the 1909 National, stylishly disposed, off levels, of a field containing Leinster and Mount Prospect's Fortune who both had much higher handicap marks. It was a first Grand National victory for Harry Escott whose advice regarding the course was well received by the strong young Frenchman Georges Parfrement. Georges maturely rode longer than was his custom in order to cope with Aintree's drop fences and patiently adhered to the plan of holding his mount up and taking an outside route. Sadly, Parfrement would be killed in a fall at Enghien in 1923.

It is quite difficult to assess the merit of Lutteur's performance, therefore, my educated guess will be vaguer than normal on this occasion. His was a good effort from a 5-y-o, however, Lutteur's winning time for the weight he carried on the going was merely reasonable in an average, at best, era and arguably the proximity of Judas holds the form down. I think the pace in the 1909 National was very good and it was sustained - just the two horses truly stayed - but we can't compare the time with the only remotely recent previous renewal run on similar going because in 1903 the pace collapsed. Furthermore, the nearest finisher to Lutteur with previous National form, Tom West, blew up following an enforced absence. I like Lutteur's effort, however, he would win merely two more races. On balance, allowing Lutteur 2 (pounds/lengths) for a jumping error and cosiness of victory, I will award him -40 with Judas, who strictly at the weights in 1909 was 3 inferior, rated -45.

 

HOOFNOTES

> There is a possibility that Phaethon may have carried 1lb overweight and 10-05.   

 

 

 

 

 

 

Copyright 2017 by Chris Dowling