In 1988 Rhyme ‘n’ Reason won the Grand National in a time of nine minutes and 53.5 seconds in the race which was being run for the 142nd time at Aintree. The horse was owned by Juliet Reed, trained by David Elsworth and partnered by Irish jockey Brendan Powell.
A maximum field of 40 runners saw only 9 complete the course on ground that was ‘good to soft’. Nine year old, Rhyme ‘n’ Reason, started at a price of 10/1 and won by a distance of 4 lengths from Durham Edition, with Monanore in third place and West Tip in fourth position, his owner received a prize of £85,000.
The favourite in 1988 was Sacred Path at 17/2, however his chances were short lived as he fell at the first fence. Lean Ar Aghaidh was joint second favourite with Rhyme ‘n’ Reason who in only his second season had won four chases. He had won the Irish Grand National at the age of six as well as two second places and a third position in other races prior to his first Grand National attempt, however he did not live up to his early promise and became known as an unreliable jumper.
Peter Scudamore was riding the much fancied Strands of Gold, had a near perfect ride on the first circuit and had taken the lead, until at Becher’s Brook second time around where he hit the fence hard and fell. At the back of the field Rhyme ‘n‘ Reason looked an unlikely contender as he landed in a heap on his belly at Becher’s on the first circuit. Now in last place, his jockey managed to keep control and make a remarkable recovery to claw his way back into the race.
At the second Becher’s Rhyme ‘n‘ Reason moved into second place, with West Tip, Durham Edition and Little Polveir in a tight group around him. At the second last he stalled and Durham Edition flew through to lead by three lengths. At the final fence, responding to the whip, which led to a steward's inquiry, Rhyme ‘n’ Reason steadily closed the gap, to win by four lengths from Durham Edition.
Unfortunately after the race he was found to have suffered a fractured hock, the injury responded to treatment but he was never raced again. He was retired to his owners stud in Hampshire.
Pos | Name | Jockey | Age | Weight | SP
1st | Rhyme ‘n' Reason | Brendan Powell | 9 | 11-00 | 10/1
2nd | Durham Edition | Chris Grant | 10 | 10-09 | 20/1
3rd | Monanore | T J Taaffe | 11 | 10-04 | 33/1
4th | West Tip | Richard Dunwoody | 11 | 11-07 | 11/1
5th | Attitude Adjuster | Niall Madden | 8 | 10-0 | 33/1
6th | Friendly Henry | Neale Doughty | 8 | 10-04 | 100/1
7th | The Tsarevich | John White | 12 | 10-10 | 18/1
8th | Course Hunter | P Croucher | 10 | 10-01 | 20/1
9th | Lean Ar Aghaidh | Guy Landau | 11 | 11-00 | 10/1