Even a limited number of spectators were permitted to attend Aintree in 1997 – the ‘bomb alert’ National when the course was evacuated and the race delayed by 48 hours.
Yet, given that last year’s renewal was a Covid casualty, the fact that today’s race is taking place is progress of sorts and testament to the team, headed by Nicholas Wrigley from North Yorkshire, for ensuring one of he great sporting events can take place and, hopefully, lift the nation’s spirits.
All it needs is for the Yorkshire runner Definitly Red, a true favourite at trainer Brian Ellison’s stables in Malton and the big race mount of Middleham’s Henry Brooke who broke his neck on the gallops last November, to defy his odds and make this a definite day to remember.
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