The 2003 Grand National was the 156th occurence of this prestigious race and took place at Aintree on 3:45 British Summer Time, on the 5th of April, 2003. The 10-year-old 16/1 shot Monty’s Pass was ably captained by none other than respected rider Barry Geraghty.
The unforgiving Monty’s Pass took apart the other 40 racers to clinch the Grand National crown within a terrific time of 9 minutes and 21 seconds. The impressive winner had been trained by Jimmy Mangan of Cork, Ireland.
Covering a course that stretched 4 miles and 4 furlongs, the event saw only 14 of the participating 40 jockeys cross the finishing line. Unlike the previous year when two horses succumbed to this punishing race, in 2003 one fatality was recorded. Still anything other than zero is of course a tragedy. Although the number of successful finishers decreased slightly set against 2002, the fact that Monty’s Pass ran the course in such a fast time, but this a thrilling event.
Many horses favoured before the race only succeeded in disappointing. Shotgun Willy had been a popular favorite after winning the Red Square Vodka Cup at Haydock that same year. Going off as the 7/1 likely, or rather favoured, victor, the horse paled in comparison to some less favoured competitors and tailed off midway through the race. Youllneverwalkalone, a fan of many liverpudlians for obvious reasons, had previously emboldened many fans hopes of success before finally yielding at the 11th fence as a result of injury.
Second place went to the determined Leighton Aspell mounting Supreme Glory, while Amberleigh House handed Graham Lee third slot.