The 2003 Grand National was without doubt one of the best laid out training and gambling coups of our time. Trainer Jimmy Mangan and owner Mike Futter knew one thing that the handicapper did not realise and that was that Monty's Pass was a much better horse going left handed and as such his owner Mike Futter who is a professional punter knew something that the Bookmakers did not. As a result he backed his horse at all odds from 40/1 down to win over three quarters of a million pounds and with the prize money of a quarter of a million he took out a cool million for his troubles, not bad for a days work.
One other thing which should also be mentioned he managed to secure the services of Barry Geraghty to ride, Barry had being in the form of his life and having just won the leading jockey at the 2003 Cheltenham Festival his confidence was on an all time high.
So with everything in place all that was left was for horse and rider to execute which they did with maximum efficiency racing to a 12-length victory from Supreme Glory with trainer Ginger McCain's Amberleigh House back in third. Gunner Welburn was fourth with Montifault fifth and last year's winner Bindaree in sixth. Only 14 of the 40 horses finished the gruelling four-and-a-half mile course in Liverpool.
The 7-1 favourite Shotgun Willy was pulled up at Becher's Brook the second time around by jockey Ruby Walsh, winner of the day's first three races.
"It's the thing you dream about. To have the winner is unreal," said Monty's Pass' Irish trainer Jimmy Mangan. Geraghty was delighted with his horse's ability to cope over the big Aintree Fences. "He was like a cat, he jumped unbelievable," said Geraghty, "I had a lovely run."It's hard to believe he could win so easily."
1st Monty's Pass (B J Geraghty) 12 lengths
2nd Supreme Glory (L Aspell) 2L
3rd Amberleigh House (G Lee) 14L
4th Gunner Welburn (B Fenton) 11L
5th Montifault 1L
6th Bindaree 18L
7th Carbury Cross 6L
8th Blowing wind 7L
9th Tremallt 7L
10th Behrajan 9L
11th Djeddah 8L
12th Majed Dis
13th Royal Predica 26L
14th Southern Star