Godsmejudge Wins Scottish Grand National
Godsmejudge has joined a short list of seven-year-olds to have won the Scottish Grand National with an exceptional jumping performance at Ayr on Saturday.
The Alan King-trained gelding relished the strenuous conditions of the marathon style event and despite taking the lead a long way from home was still able to jump strongly in the final stages of the race and claim victory from Big Occasion and Mister Maker.
Jockey Wayne Hutchinson said all the credit deserved to go to the horse and trainer Alan King.
“He jumped great and got into a fantastic rhythm,” Hutchinson said.
“He’s given me a fantastic ride and all credit to the boss.”
King was clearly emotional to have won the biggest race at his home racecourse.
“This means a huge amount to me,” King said.
“I’ve been lucky enough to win a Champion Hurdle and a Queen Mother and this is up there with those.
“It’s been a very, very difficult winter with very testing conditions.
“We’ve been very patient and we’re being rewarded.”
The Scottish Grand National victory capped off a stellar season for Godsmejudge who finished in the placing’s in all but one of his runs which included victories at Warwick and Folkestone as well as a gallant third in the John Oaksey National Hunt during the 2013 Cheltenham Festival.
Auroras Encore was aiming to become the first horse since the great Red Rum in 1974 to claim the Aintree-Ayr Grand National double but struggled under the heavy weight and was pulled up after losing touch with the field in the concluding stages of the race.
Jockey Ryan Mania was disappointed but said the son of Second Empire received no luck in the race.
“In the Grand National everything went right and today everything went wrong,” Mania said.
“I jumped off where I wanted to be and how I didn’t get brought down by the horse that fell at the second, I don’t know.”
The jumps racing season concludes with the Punchestown Festival this weekend.
You can find the best odds for every race during the Punchestown Festival at Bet365.