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1977: Hat trick for Red Rum

VIDEO : Red Rum races to historic victory

Red Rum has galloped into racing history by winning the Grand National for a record third time.

The steeple chaser won the race in 1973 and 1974 and came home second in the following two years.

Before the race concern was expressed that at 12 the horse was too old for an event widely regarded as the most dangerous on the jumping circuit.

But after he romped home his jockey, Tommy Stack, said Red Rum's entry had been justified.

"He is so intelligent, always looks for the open places and is always on the alert for loose horses," Mr Stack said.

Record earnings

Red Rum's win on Saturday brought his career earnings to a steeple-chasing record of 114,000.

The horse took the lead at Becher's Brook on the second circuit of the course when Andy Pandy, the leader and pre-race favourite, fell.

After that Red Rum was never in danger of being caught and came home well clear of second-placed Churchtown Boy and Eyecatcher in third.

Only nine of the 42 runners completed the infamous 4.5 mile (7.2 kilometre) course at Aintree in Liverpool, north-west England.

Two horses, Zeta's Son and Winter Rain, had to be put down after falling and one jockey was taken to hospital.

After the race Red Rum's trainer, Ginger McCain, said he believed the horse would compete again next year.

Bookmakers responded by offering odds of 20-1 against him.

This year's race also featured the first woman rider. In spite of dire warnings from male jockeys and trainers, Charlotte Brew, 21, almost completed the course though she was a long way behind the leaders.

Her horse, Barony Fort, refused the fourth fence from home forcing Ms Brew to pull out of the race.

In Context
Red Rum was entered for the 1978 Grand National but suffered a heel injury shortly before the race and was declared unfit to run.

However, he appeared at Aintree to lead the parade of the runners.

After retirement he became the first equine celebrity appearing at charity events and betting shop and supermarket openings.

He also received a daily stream of visitors at trainer Ginger McCain's yard in Southport, Merseyside.

After his health deteriorated in October 1995 he was put down and buried near the winning post at Aintree racecourse.

The Grand National

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