This iconic race is watched by 600 million people in over 140 countries. Established in 1839, The Grand National is a National Hunt horse race taking place at the famous Aintree Racecourse in Liverpool. The competition held every April covers a distance of 7 km (about 4 miles). Horses have to overcome 30 fences during two laps of the course. The generous prize fund of £1 million makes it the most prestigious race in England. It attracts many celebrities as well as the British elite. Betting on horses is also possible during the race.
The Grand National is considered to be a tough race since the fences at Aintree are larger than at other National Hunt tracks. The atmosphere of the Grand National Festival is also extraordinary. With four Grade One races, cheering crowds, live music, and entertainment, this three-day event is not like any other race.
The Grand National acquired the status of an event of national interest in the United Kingdom and was initiated by William Lynn and William Molyneux, 2nd Earl of Sefton. Lynn built a course and a grandstand in Aintree. The first race took place in 1836. The winning horse was The Duke, and the jockey was Captain Martin Becher. In 2019, the race was marked by the death of the horse, Up For Review, which caused much criticism about the toughness of the race and extremely high fences that injure horses.