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From The Epsom Derby To The Grand National

Voluptuary, bred on behalf of Queen Victoria, is the only horse to have run in the Epsom Derby and gone on to win the Grand National.

Voluptuary was trained by the brothers William and Ted Wilson at Illmington, Warwickshire. He ran in the Derby in 1881, briefly holding the leading position as he rounded Tattenham Corner, but finished sixth to Iroquois. The six year old then won at Aintree, on jockey Ted Wilson (one of the trainers), by four lengths at his debut (in public) over fences in 1884.

Voluptuary ran a further three times in the Grand National, but much to everyone's; especially trainer William Wilson's; disappointment, he failed to complete the course ever again! When his racing career was over, he got a billing in a London theatre production, regularly appearing on the Drury Lane stage where he had to clear a mock Water jump night after night in the play 'Prodigal Daughter', ridden by actor Leonard Boyne who subsequently bought him.

Other Derby runners who went on to race in the National were A British Yeoman, owned by John Elmore and Ryshworth owned by Henry Chaplin. A British Yeoman was placed third and sixth in the Nationals of 1848 and 1849 after being unplaced at Epsom in 1843. He failed to finish in the National of 1850, and he was brought down in his final attempt, at the age of 16, in 1856. Ryshworth was a runner up in the 1873 National after coming fourth in the 1869 Derby.

Donzelon ran, but didn't impress in the Derby of 1924, but went on to win the Scottish Grand National in 1929. However, his one and only attempt at Aintree in 1930, where he was a 66-1 outsider, resulted in a fall. Brienz won the 1928 Dewhurst Stakes and finished third in the 1929 Derby. He was good on the fences, winning the Coventry Cup Chase at the 1933 Cheltenham Festival, and also came fourth in the Gold Cup in 1936. His entries into the Grand National didn't provide the same kind of results, as he fell in both 1935 and 1936 races.

Permit was another to run in the Derby and the National. He never showed much promise on the Flat but was capable when it came to the Fences, and he finished third in the Haydock National Trial of 1969 and the Greenall Whitley National Trial of 1971. His attempts at winning the National did not come to fruition - he was brought down in a pile up in the first open ditch in 1970 and in 1972 fell as a 100-1 outsider.

Trainers that have had horses win both the Derby and the Grand National include Dick Dawson with Drogheda who won the National in 1898, followed by Fifinella, Trigo and Blenheim, who won the Derby in 1916, 1929 and 1930 respectively. George Blackwell performed a similar feat winning the Epsom in 1903 with Rock Sand and going on to win the National in 1923 with Sergeant Murphy.

Article Tags: Grand National

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For the most in depth coverage of the John Smiths Aintree Grand National, past, present and future, including all the information you need on the jockeys, trainers, runners, odds and history visit our website. Also included is a free sweepstakes kit which is easy to use and perfect for a bit of fun in the office.

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