News and STORIES
Irish Grand National Winner Becomes One Of The Highest-Priced Winners In Racing History
Author: Ryan Knuppel
Published: Tuesday April 06, 2021
It is a big seven days of racing in the United Kingdom and Ireland, with the world’s most famous race, the Grand National, taking place at Aintree on Saturday. However, the week got underway with the Fairyhouse Easter meeting in Ireland, and history was made in the featured race of the afternoon, as there was one of the biggest-priced winners in British and Irish racing history.
Very few gave Freewheelin Dylan much of a chance in the Irish National, as he was set off at a price of 150/1. However, the Dermot McLoughlin-trained horse surpassed all expectations to lead from the start and see off all his rivals to claim a historic success.
Freewheelin Dylan Makes History
It was a phenomenal performance from horse and jockey Ricky Doyle to lead from the front to claim the win. The nine-year-old jumped excellently over the larger obstacles throughout the three-mile five-furlong distance and looked unnerved when leading the chasing pack throughout.
His only wobble came at the final fence, as he didn’t take it especially well but was able to rediscover his momentum along the final stretch. There was no shortage of talent in the race on Monday afternoon, with a number of Grade winners looking for a lucrative success at Fairyhouse.
Latest Exhibition was the clear favorite in the betting after it was decided that Tiger Roll was to head for Aintree instead of the Irish National. However, the extra weight that the eight-year-old likely played a part in as he finished five lengths behind the leader. Paul Nolan was confident ahead of the race that he could produce from top-weight after he made the judgment call in early March to sidestep the Cheltenham Festival and a third meeting with Monkfish to challenge for the Irish National.
Enjoy D’allen Holds On For Third
The favorite wasn’t the only outsider to put in an excellent effort in the Irish National, as 40/1 shot Enjoy D’allen finished in third. The Ciaran Murphy-trained horse finished four and a half lengths behind the winner, but it was a sterling effort by the seven-year-old and would have made for decent return from each-way bets.
Run Wild Fred finished in second place for trainer Denise Foster. The wagers came in for the seven-year-old throughout the day, but he was unable to close the gap on the leader after running through the final fence, which effectively halted his momentum. The seven-year-old still has an entry for the Grand National on Saturday, but it would seem unlikely after the grueling three miles and five furlongs around Fairyhouse.
Huge Home Win
The win for Freewheelin Dylan was an emotional one for connections, as McLoughlin’s father won the Irish Grand National himself as a jockey back in 1962. It would have been extra special given that the yard for the trainer is only a short distance away from the track.
The victory ranks up there with some of the biggest-priced winners in British and Irish racing history. He Knows No Fear made history in August last year as he won at Leopardstown from a price of 300/1.
That victory smashed a 30-year record, which was set by Equinoctial in 1990. Beechy Bank and Dandy Flame both won at odds of 200/1 at Warwick and Wolverhampton, respectively, while Lights of Broadway won at 200/1 at Taunton in 2012.
The most famous outsider to win one of the big races came back in 2009, as Mom Mome won the Grand National at odds of 100/1. That price remains the highest in Grand National history, but there would have been a few higher-priced selections watching the Irish National believing that they can emulate the success achieved by Freewheelin Dylan.