History-Making Grand National Hero Minella Times Retired After Injury Setback

Rachael Blackmore steered the Henry de Bromhead-trained horse to victory by six-and-a-half-lengths at the Aintree spectacular in 2021
11:08, 21 Feb 2023

Minella Times, the horse Rachael Blackmore made history on by becoming the first female rider to win the Grand National in 2021, has been retired after suffering an injury setback.

Blackmore steered the Henry de Bromhead-trained horse to victory by six-and-a-half-lengths at the Aintree spectacular two years ago, and the ten-year-old was due to have another tilt this April. 

The JP McManus-owned gelding retires with four wins from 24 races and career earnings of nearly £500,000. He had been pulled up in two starts this season, including in the Cross Country Handicap Chase at Cheltenham last month.

McManus’ racing manager Frank Berry said: “We were looking forward to going to the cross-country at Cheltenham with him and back to the National, but he had a mishap – he hurt his shoulder.

“He might need an operation on it to make him comfortable in retirement. It’s just disappointing.

“He gave us a great day. It’s a real shame because Henry was very happy with him and we were looking forward to getting him back for the cross-country and the National again.

“The handicapper hit him very hard for winning the National and he struggled last year, but he had dropped back down a bit so it’s just unfortunate he’s had the accident. Hopefully he’ll be fine to have a good retirement.

“The season he won the National Henry had him in great form, he put up two great performances at Leopardstown before Aintree and everything went smoothly there.

“He got a great ride from Rachael on the day and it was a day none of us will every forget.”

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