Grand National Anorak

Welcome to the Grand National Anorak Pages - Aintree and the Grand National from 1946

2019 - Tiger Roll joins the greats, helped by Magic Of Lights mistake at the last to draw clear and win his second Grand National - the first since Red Rum in 1974 to win back-to-back Nationals.

Welcome to the pages of the Grand National Anorak (Chris to his friends). 

These pages are designed to tell you everything you ever wanted to know about the Grand National and racing at Aintree (or perhaps things you didn`t need to know). But first the "health warning" . For me the Grand National is a visual experience. If it is not recorded on film or radio then as far as I am concerned it did not happen. So, if you are looking for a lively debate on whether the National was first run in 1839 or 1836 at Maghull (or perhaps 1836 at Aintree) then this site isn`t for you. 

This website is dedicated to the Grand National from 1946 onwards which has always been my area of interest. I have tried to look at the National from all angles and hopefully you will find some obscure fact that you were not previously aware of.

The site is completely unofficial and a light hearted, sideways glance at the race that most of love so much.

I would like to thank Paul Davies of the Complete Record, Jane Clarke curator of the Aintree museum, Alan Johnson, Mick Mutlow (a fellow Hammer), Tim Cox, John PInfold & the late Reg Green who have all at some stage over the past ten years helped with my research.

Chris - April 2007 (updated April 2015)


The Grand National Anorak website was just the beginning. The aim has always been to put together a comprehensive analysis of the National since the war.
I have been in the process of  updating my various National sites which can be found at the following web addresses. - Everything you need to know about the Grand National and racing at Aintree between 1946-59. - Analysis of Aintree and the National between 1960-69. As well as an in-depth analysis of the National the site looks at the supporting races run  over the National fences (including the lost Molyneux and Becher Chases) and lists all National runners who ran over the Mildmay course. - A similar site dedicated to 1970-79 which also looks at the development of the National meeting and the new jumps races that were introduced in 1976 and 1977. There is even space for a look at the last flat meetings run at Aintree and the one-off revival of the Autumn meeting in October 1972 - Celebrate the first ten years of the twenty first century with not only an in-depth analysis of the races but also biographies of every horse who raced in the Nationals of the decade.


NEW FOR 2018


The Changing Face of the Natonal

Now we have enjoyed seven of the new style Nationals I felt it was time to compare to see whether statistically the changes have had any effect at all. As I intend to retire after 2019 I have compared the seven year period before the ground-breaking modifications in 2013 with the period thereafter.


 2006-12% of runners2013-% of runners
 1st13 6.19 11  3.99
 2nd13 6.19 4 1.45
 3rd 9 4.28 6 2.17
 4th12 5.71
 5th 5 2.38 1 0.36
 B2110 11 3.99
 F 4 1.90 3 1.09
 CT12  5.71 11 3.99
 V 6 2.86 5 1.81
10th 4 1.90 3 1.09
11th 6 2.86 4 1.45
12th 3 1.43 3 1.09
13th 1 0.48 1 0.36
14th 2 0.95 3 1.09
Ch 6 2.86 7 2.54


2006-12% of runners2013-% of runners
Finishers10136.07 12043.48

Putting the horse first

As well as the modifications to the fences the other major development is the changing attitudes of the modern day rider. No longer will a well beaten and tired horse be hunted round for nothing more than the glory of completing the course. We have seen a large increase in the number of horses dropping out after the third last. For instance between 1969 & 1989 only two horses pulled up in the closing stages and one fell at the last. Between 1990 & 2005 that had more than doubled with 5 pulling up and 3 falling. 

Since 2006 the amount has increased dramatically as the table below shows - if attitudes had't changed the current record of 23 finishers would have been smashed in 2017. I think it is fair to suggest that the record is unlikely to be broken. 

Dropped outFinishers 
2006 1 9  (10)
2007 4 12 (16)
2008 215 (17)
2009 217 (19)
2010 314 (17)
2011 219 (21)
2013 4 17 (21)
2014 1 18 (19)
2015 319 (22)
2016 1 16 (17)
2017 919 (28)
2018 612 (18)
2019 619 (25)

About the author

I hope that some of you do return to this site occasionally so you should all know by now that the Grand National Anorak was born in 1967.  As a child all he wanted to be was a commentator but as he never worked out how to go about it he does something in the law instead. He was briefly in the early noughties a Point-to-Point commentator on the South East circuit but offers of work dried up and as a result he has not set foot on a point to point course since 2004. He can name all the fallers in all the Nationals since the sixties and as a result appeared on the BBCs "Grand National Tales" documentary broadcast in 1997. He has no connections within racing whatsoever (and his latest attempt to become a commentator failed miserably) but he did once hold a door open for Paul Nicholls at Lingfield. He is married to the ever lovely and patient Bridget and lives a quiet life in Kent. He realises that he has probably wasted his life obsessing over a four and a quarter mile handicap chase so 2019 will probably be the year he retires from all this silliness.

He is also currently trying to visit every racecourse in the UK and after visiting Ayr in February 2017 only has three to go.

Away from racing he is a frustrated West Ham supporter and used to sing in a punk band. Amongst his other non-racing hobbies are eating and  drinking Italian wine.

His one regret is that he lives so far away from Aintree.

Contact the National Anorak

I hope you will enjoy this site. If you do please sign my guestbook. I am always interested to hear from any National enthusiasts. Let me know your favourite National hero and race. If you have any specific questions please feel free to e-mail me at


Create a Free Website