The Nigel Twiston-Davies trained 14 year old had already won the 2009 Scottish Grand National at Ayr and was Rrdden by Paddy Brennan, withstanding a late thrust from Tony McCoy on Gone To Lunch winning by half a length and giving Twiston-Davies his third winner in that particular race.
Having previously been trained by David Wintle, Twiston-Davies took over for the 2008/09 season and managed to improve Hello Bud by 30lbs. Twiston-Davies had already proved that he has exactly what it takes to get a horse to Grand National standards, having previously won at Aintree twice, once with Earth Summit in 1998 and again with Bindaree in 2002.
He had another good race at Cheltenham at the end of October 2009 when he led until the final 100 yards when he was overhauled to finish third to Galant Nuit and Don't Push It in the Servo Trophy Handicap Chase.
The 2011 Grand National didn't exactly go according to plan with the 20/1 Hello Bud being pulled up by jockey Sam Twiston-Davies and at 14 years of age it was thought to be almost impossible for him to make in impact in the 2012 renewal.
He eventually made the final line-up of 40 but even then you'd have had to back to 1853 to find a horse older than Hello Bud who won the Grand National and that was Peter Simple who was ridden by legendary jockey Tom Oliver. NOt deterred, hello Bud ran a fantastic race and finished in 7th position.
Though retirement was on the cards, Sam Twiston-Davies gave him one last run out in the 2012 Becher Chase on December 8th at Aintree and he romped home ending his career on a high before he retired to enjoy his twilight years!
Photo Credit | Meteorshoweryn