grand national 2013 / result
Auroras Encore Wins Grand National
1 Auroras Encore 66/1
Jockey Ryan Mania had a look of stunned disbelief in the press conference following his victory in the John Smith’s Grand National having won the world’s most famous steeplechase on his very first ride.
Mania was riding for his boss Sue Smith, who also saddled Mr Moonshine, who was pulled up on the second circuit before the 27th fence.
The 23-year-old jockey said: “I was always veering towards riding Auroras Encore. If the ground had gone soft I might have gone for Mr Moonshine as Auroras Encore really doesn’t like it soft.
“I couldn’t have asked for a better ride and the old horse was loving it as well. I couldn’t believe, even at the Melling Road, that I was still there. I was happy to be placed at that point and then the front two stopped and I took off in front of them – it was unbelievable.”
Mania, a former point-to-point rider from Galashiels in the Scottish Borders became the first Scottish-born winning rider of the Grand National since 1896, when Mr David Campbell (later General Sir David Campbell) won on The Soarer. Mania’s victory marked a dramatic turnaround in his riding career, which was temporarily halted when he spent six months out of racing and working in hunt service after his former boss Howard Johnson lost his training licence.
He explained: “I didn’t know what to do. I took six months out but after two months I thought ‘what am I doing?’. Sue and Harvey have been unbelievable – I couldn’t have come back without them. The opportunities for jockeys up north are very limited and I am lucky to have such a good yard behind me.”
Asked how he’d celebrate, Mania replied: “I’m off to ride at Hexham tomorrow!”
Paying tribute to the young jockey, former international show jumper Harvey Smith, husband of winning trainer Sue, said: “He’s very keen and he wants to do it. When they’re keen – horses or jockeys – they just get on with it.”
John Smith's Grand National Chase (Grade 3 Handicap)
Cappa Bleu went two places better than 12 months ago for trainer Evan Williams and jockey Paul Moloney when beaten nine lengths in to second.
Williams said: “We are getting closer! I was glad when the field kicked on as I knew we would stay but the winner has sprinted away.
“I am pleased for Sue and Harvey Smith as they are proper, proper National Hunt people and to see old Harvey shedding a tear means everything.
“It is great for the north and if we had to finish second, I could not have asked to finish second to better people.
“We travelled and jumped beautifully through the race and everything has gone to plan but we have found one too good. I have no complaints and will do it one day.”
Moloney added: “The race went well and I got a lovely position. On the second circuit I was that confident that I made a move to the outside as I had so much horse beneath me and did not want to get brought down.
“When I got to Valentines I really thought I could win but crossing the Melling Road I couldn’t go with them and I got caught flatfooted. To be fair he has galloped to the line but was one paced.
“We could have done with a stronger pace from the start to make it more of a test but at the end of the day it is the National and they can’t go much faster.
“My lad has a bit of class and it is a great training achievement to do that.”
Both third Teaforthree and fourth Oscar Time were up with the leading pack through the majority of the 2013 John Smith’s Grand National and ended up rewarding their each-way backers with super clear rounds to take third and fourth place. Teaforthree was facing the Aintree fences for the first time while Oscar Time had finished second to Ballabriggs in 2011.
Nick Scholfield, rider of Teaforthree, said: “What a ride he’s given me – we both enjoyed it. Off 11st 3lb that was an awesome performance. He’d done nothing wrong and just really tried his heart out.”
Teaforthree’s trainer Rebecca Curtis added: “He jumped amazingly well and had an absolutely brilliant round. It was probably just the weight that got him in the end – he had 11st 3lb and the winner was on a light weight but we’re delighted with him, it was just brilliant.”
Sam’s father Robert Waley-Cohen, co-owner of Oscar Time, said: “That was amazing, so exciting. Sam had him in a great position and gave him every chance. We’ve now had second, fourth and fifth in this race [also Liberthine, fifth in 2007].”
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