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Horses have to successfully jump a total of 30 Grand National Fences. Each of the 16 individual fences are jumped twice, apart from The Chair and The Water Jump. The race comprises two circuits of the course. Becher's Brook is the 6th fence on the first circuit, and 22nd on the second. It was modified for safety purposes in 1989, and remains one of the most formidable fences.
The first official races at Aintree were set up by the owner of Liverpool's Waterloo Hotel, Mr William Lynn. Mr Lynn leased the land from Lord Sefton, laid out a course, built a grandstand and staged the first Flat fixture on July 7, 1829.
Aintree is home to the worlds most popular races in the world, the Aintree Grand National. The Aintree Grand National was first run in 1839 and was won by the 5-1 favourite "Lottery". This was also the year in which the infamous Captain Martin Becher fell from his horse "Conrad" into the brook when in the lead, thus beginning the legend that is Becher's Brook.
In recent years the Aintree racecourse has gone from strength to strength and a large part of the credit can go to Martell who provided much needed sponsorship at an important time. New Sponsors John Smiths Beer shall take over the Grand National sponsorship in 2005 and this ties in nicely with future plans for the course which include a new grandstand, as well as a redeveloped Parade Ring and Winner's Enclosure. Aintree's ambitious £30million plan will be complete for the 2007 Grand National Meeting.