Red Marauder

Horses | Last ran in 2001
Dam - Cover Your Money
Sire - Gunner B
Dam's Sire - Precipice Wood
Born - 1990

Red Marauder Grand National Wins

  • 2001 - ridden by Richard Guest trained by Norman B Mason

Winner of the Grand National in 2001, there is a lot more to the story of Red Marauder, both on and off the track, than what meets the eye. This was a real triumph for Richard Guest, and a Grand National won in some of the most challenging conditions we have ever seen.

Foaled on March 4, 1990, the horse is down in the history books as being owned and trained by Norman Mason. However, Mason only held the license, it was Richard Guest that did all the training with this runner, and he also rode the horse to victory in the race.

Just four runners completed the course in 2001, which gives you an idea of the conditions that day. Of those, two were remounted, and the winner won by a distance while there was drama along the way at Canal Turn. We all know the Grand National can be a bit of a lottery, as anything can happen, and if you ever need reminding of that, go back in the archives to 2001 and watch the victory of Red Marauder in the race.

At one point, there wasn’t even going to be a 2001 Grand National due to the foot and mouth outbreak that brought about the abandonment of the 2001 Cheltenham Festival, just a month before the Grand National. However, racing was quick to get back on its feet and didn’t want to cancel the two biggest events on the calendar, so with strict measures in place, the race went ahead.

Full Results

Year Result Prize Money Handicap Jockey Trainer
2001 1 £310,000 10-11 Richard Guest Norman B Mason
2000 Fence 6 - Fell - 11-2 Richard Guest Norman B Mason

Winner Of The 2001 Grand National

For the sake of the winner, it is a good job that the race did go ahead because he was an 11-year-old at the time and didn’t run in the race in 2002. The winning time on the day that Red Marauder recorded was over 11 minutes and went down as being the slowest winning time for the race in over 100 years.

Four finished, only two of those got round without trouble, as the other two were remounted. The official distance was ‘a distance’ as Red Marauder crossed the line well clear of Smarty, the only other runner to fully complete without remounting. The Richard Guest runner won with an SP of 33/1, and went into the race unfancied on form, and looked as though he was past his best.

After the race, all jockeys and horses were reported to be fine, but that didn’t stop the course from facing criticism for running in such tough conditions. However, when you look at the actual casualties in the race, 30 out of the 40 runners were either brought down by another horse or fell, they didn’t leave the race specifically due to conditions. Having said that, there was a lot of horses who fell when tired, the ground certainly played a part in that.

Richard Guest is the man at the centre of the Red Marauder story, doing far more for the horse than what it says on paper. Officially, he goes down as being the winning jockey, but he was also responsible for the training of the horse, as well as riding him. After retirement, Guest kept Red Marauder in his stables until the horse passed away in 2016.

Two fences from home, Smarty began to tire, and Red Marauder pulled clear of his only other challenger, which left the race finish as a bit of a non-event. Rather than having an exciting finish as we have seen many times before, the four runners who completed came across the line at long intervals, with jockeys doing all they could to keep their mounts steady and going, certainly not riding out in the conditions.

It won’t go down as a vintage renewal of the race and will always be known for the race that almost didn’t happen because of the foot and mouth outbreak. But that won’t be in the record books, what will be there is that Red Marauder is a Grand National winning horse, with Richard Guest a Grand National winning jockey and trainer, if you know the whole story.

Red Marauder’s Early Years

In the early part of his career, Red Marauder was officially trained by Norman Mason, but Richard Guest was not doing the steering at this point. During this period, he ran in novice hurdles and managed to win two of them, both over the shortest national hunt trip of two miles.

After that, he went chasing, winning a novice chase over two miles. After a year off, Richard Guest took over in the saddle, and the horse was stepped up in trip, this is where he really began to show his talent.

The horse won three races in a row, a handicap chase by 29 lengths, another handicap chase by 24 lengths and then a Grade Two handicap chase at Ascot by 11 lengths. The horse had shown significant improvement and hit the big time. Unfortunately, the injury would once again hit, with the horse off the track for more than 400 days.

We could well have seen Red Marauder a lot more in top company had it not been for these two long injuries keeping him off the track. When he returned after 400 days off, he went to Wetherby and won a handicap chase by four lengths, at this point, he really was showing his class and had no choice but to move up the racing ladder.

Red Marauder’s Big Race Wins

While the Grade Two handicap chase he won at Ascot was a nice pot, the only truly big win of Red Marauder’s career came in the Grand National. He won the big prize in 2001, which would be the last victory he had in his career, retiring after one more run in February 2003, again after a long spell on the sidelines, this time over 600 days, after his National win.

While the horse has won the biggest race of them all, he is undoubtedly a runner where you wonder ‘what if’. Had injuries not taken around four years out of his racing period, we could well have seen him do a lot more and win many more big prizes.