Grand National hero Red Marauder dies aged 26
Red Marauder wins the 2001 Grand National under Richard Guest
PICTURE: John Grossick (racingpost.com/photos) Grand National hero Red Marauder dies aged 26
By Tony McFadden 3:21PM 23 NOV 2016
RED MARAUDER, winner of the memorable but controversial 2001 Grand National, has died at the age of 26.
Ridden by Richard Guest – who played a pivotal role in the training of the horse – and running under the name of owner Norman Mason, Red Marauder prevailed in one of the most attritional races ever run in Britain as he ploughed through the mud to beat Smarty in a race in which just four of the 40 starters completed.
Blowing Wind and Papillon, who were remounted by riders Sir Anthony McCoy and Ruby Walsh, were the only other horses to complete in an incident-packed race, in which much of the field were taken out in a Foinavon-esque pile-up at the Canal Turn.
The sight of two weary, mud-splattered horses having the Grand National to themselves shortly after halfway prompted much debate about whether the race should have taken place in such testing conditions.
Red Marauder: on his way to an unforgettable success
PICTURE: Martin Lynch (racingpost.com/photos)
Red Marauder lived out his days with Guest, who now trains under his own name in Wetherby, after he was retired, and a statement from the yard said: "It is with a heavy heart that we have to break the news that our beloved Red Marauder lay down for the last time on Tuesday night at the grand age of 26.
"Since he ran his final race in 2003, he was looked after as the racing royalty he was, and he enjoyed his retirement living out in the paddock."
Describing the horse's famous National triumph, the statement read: "The 2001 Grand National will always be remembered and is an unforgettable moment in racing history, with the sign of Red and Richard returning exhausted, victorious and coated in mud providing a memorable image, and summing up the bravery, determination and sheer guts of Red Marauder."
The winner of nine of his 21 races, Red Marauder won £392,206 in win-and-place prize-money, including £310,000 for his Aintree heroics.