This took place on Wednesday 12th March 1862 on average going and it was clear. The winner was owned by Viscount de Namur, and trained and ridden by Harry Lamplugh, winning by 4 lengths in 9 min and 30 seconds, with a distance back to the third.


There were 89 subscribers at 5 sovereigns each, with 100 sovereigns added. There were 34 declarations of 20 sovereigns, with 13 acceptances. The second saved his stake leaving a pot of 1035 sovereigns. (Equivalent to £112,800 in 2017)

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Pos. Horse Jockey Owner
1 THE HUNTSMAN Harry Lamplugh Viscount de Namur
2 BRIDEGROOM Ben Land Jr. Mr Angell
3 ROMEO Mr C Bennett Mr C Bennett
4 XANTHUS R Sherrard Lord Sefton
also BUCEPHALUS McGrillon Mr R Rowan
also ANATIS Mr Thomas Sir E Hutchinson
also PLAYMAN Nightingale Mr A Yates
also THOMASTOWN J Murphy Mr T Naghten
also WILLOUGHBY Mr H Lington Mr H Lington
also O'CONNELL J Wynne Lord de Freyne
also THE TATTLER C Boyce Mr W G Craven
also HARRY G Stevens Mr W W Baker
also THE POET Gatt Mr J Henry

Bell’s Life and the Sporting Chronicle provided a detailed account of the race on Sunday 16th March 1862, the article forming the backbone of the information shown below.
The short-sighted newspaper hacks of the day were scathing about the Grand National, none more so than this year when the Bell’s Life reporter wrote, ‘Gradually dropping from its high estate, the Grand National has, at last, reached the lowest depths of depredation, and is no longer worthy of the distinguished title that was first applied to it in the late 1830s.’ His main gripes were that it was a handicap, that it penalised quality horses, that it attracted large fields, and that full stands were now the main priority of the promoters. Surely these are laudable aims and ones which the long-standing Grand National achieved year after year, decade after decade and century after century.
The field paraded in an orderly fashion before being despatched by Lord Sefton at 3.29, almost 30 minutes after the set time. The race developed slowly as Bridegroom, Xanthus and Willoughby crossed the first fence together, in advance of the ruck, while Bucephalus, The Poet and The Tattler brought up the rear.
It’s now over the John Hanmer in the Stands for the rest of the commentary which is shown below.

3/1 The Huntsman
6/1 Thomastown
9/1 Anatis
10/1 Bridegroom
10/1 Harry
100/8 Romeo
100/8 The Tattler
100/7 Bucephalus
20/1 Willoughby
25/1 Xanthus
25/1 Playman
33/1 O'Connell
50/1 The Poet
  Over Round 108%

By the time Beecher’s was reached it was left to Willoughby to show the way, with Bridegroom, The Huntsman and Xanthus in close attendance. Although The Tattler and Bucephalus both blundered at the next, the leaders increased their pace to extend their advantage over the tail-enders. By the time the front-runners were well into the final circuit, there were few still in with a chance. Bucephalus tired a mile from home, as did Anatis, Xanthus and Harry by the time they had reached the canal bank turn. Bridegroom was left in command, accompanied by The Huntsman and Romeo, this trio racing to the final 3 enclosures from home together. Romeo took closer order 2 from home seemingly full of running, but then cannoned the wrong side of a post to lose all chance of victory. The Huntsman spotted his opportunity and surged ahead at the final hurdle, winning in a canter by 4 lengths. Bridegroom saved his stake, with a wide interval back to Romeo, Xanthus, Harry and Bucephalus.

I am grateful to David Copland for the photo of the pair of inkwells made from the hooves of Bridegroom, runner-up in the 1862 Grand National


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774 former courses

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400 former courses

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180 pages

140 former courses

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235 former courses

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