Anglo

Anglo was the horse to give Fred Winter his second successive National victory in just two years as a racehorse trainer, following on from his illustrious riding career, which also saw him win the National twice, on Sundew and Kilmore. While Winter’s first win as a trainer had been with Jay Trump, nobody was expecting the 50-1 Anglo to put in the same kind of performance to go on to become the 1966 Grand National Champion. The fact that he won by twenty lengths from the Scottish hope Freddie who had narrowly been defeated the previous year made Anglo’s victory ever the more impressive.

Anglo, an Irish-bred chestnut sired by Greek Star out of Miss Alligator, had started out on the Flat as a two year old, but wasn’t impressing anyone at that point and was therefore sold on by Major-General Sir Randle Feilden, who eventually went on to become the Senior Steward of the Jockey Club. Bought by a farmer for a mere 110 guineas under his initial name of Flag of Convenience, Anglo improved so much in the next two years that he went on to get 2,500 guineas when sold to trainer Ryan Price on behalf of Mr Stuart Levy, who was a partner at Anglo-Amalgamated Films with Nat Cohen, the owner of the 1962 National Winner Kilmore.

Under Price, Anglo went on to win over hurdles and scored four successive wins in novice chases the following season. Unfortunately for Price, he was disqualified from training in 1964, amid huge controversy due to his handling of Rosyth who despite bad seasonal form had gone on to win a second successive Schweppes Gold Trophy at 10-1. As Ryan put it: ‘it is a crime to improve a horse and a far bigger crime to win too many races.’ Hence Anglo’s involvement with Winter, who was Price’s long-time friend and had ridden his 1962 National winner Kilmore.

During Anglo’s first season with Winter the horse did well, but after that lost form with only one mediocre win at Windsor, all of which confirmed for the punters that there was nothing special about this contender for the National. However, out of the handicap proper, he was one of twenty-five runners in a field of forty-seven contenders to race off the minimum ten stone.

In an unusual episode for the National forty-two of the forty-seven runners managed to stay in the race as far as The Chair, but subsequent to this there were a number of fallers, which brought Anglo through the field quite rapidly. He managed to catch up with the long leading Forest Prince at the second last, and from there on in it was his stamina that got him through. Freddie, the favourite at 11-4 moved into second place in the run-in, but his extra stone and a half in weights got the better of him, leaving the race wide open for Anglo.

Anglo returned to the National the following year with a new owner, new jockey and an extra fifteen pounds to carry. He was pulled up in the chaos that ensued from Popham Down becoming riderless and it was to be his last National. The following year the race was won by his half brother Red Alligator.