Rachael Blackmore becomes first woman to win Grand National as Minella Times takes Aintree showpiece

Malik Ouzia
·2-min read
 (POOL/AFP via Getty Images)
(POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

Rachael Blackmore made history as the first woman to ever win the Grand National as Minella Times landed the 173rd renewal of the Aintree race.

Having broken new ground by becoming the first female rider to be top jockey at the Cheltenham Festival only last month, Blackmore continued her incredible season for trainer Henry De Bromhead, who adds Grand National success to his Gold Cup, Champion Hurdle and Champion Chase treble at Cheltenham.

Minella Times was chased home by 100/1 outsider Balko Des Flos, capping a one-two for the De Bromhead stable, with the well-fancied pair of Any Second Now and Burrows Saint finishing third and fourth respectivley. Any Second Now could feel particularly hard-done-by, having been hampered by a faller earlier in the race.

Farclas finished fifth, meaning that Irish trained runners filled each of the top five positions, following on from their dominance at Cheltenham.

Cloth Cap had been sent off favourite under Tom Scudamore and travelled nicely through the first circuit as Jett made the early running, but wilted badly at the business end of proceedings and was pulled up.

“I just cannot believe it. He was an absolutely sensational spin,” Blackmore told ITV.

“What Henry de Bromhead does with these horses, I don’t know! I’m so lucky to be riding them, I just cannot believe I’m after winning the Grand National. This is unbelievable.”

Blackmore was full of praise for Minella Times, one of seven horses in the race owned by JP McManus - among them Any Second Now.

Blackmore added: “He was just incredible, he jumped beautifully.

“I was trying to wait for as long as I could - when we jumped the last and I asked him for a bit, he was there. It’s just incredible.

“I don’t feel male or female right now - I don’t even feel human. This is just unbelievable.”

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