Synchronised was the Jonjo O'Neill trained and JP McManus owned nine year old who looked like AP McCoy‘s best chance of winning a second Grand National. Known for being an incredibly strong chaser, Synchronised could dig deep and produce remarkable results when it counted.
He won the Welsh Grand National in January 2011, when it was moved from December 2010 due to poor weather conditions and then followed it up two months later by placing third in the totesport.com Midlands Grand National Chase.
More also romped home, very unexpectedly, in the Grade 1 Lexus Chase in Leopardstown in Ireland on December 28th 2011 when he bypassed the 2011 Welsh Grand National for which he was ante-post favourite, leaving the door wide open for Le Beau Bai to win it instead.
Despite bypassing the Grade 1 Hennessy Gold Cup at Leopardstown on February 12th, he was still allocated the heaviest weight of the 2012 Grand National at 11-10 – the maximum that the BHA Handicapper can hand out.
But despite this his preparations continued and on 16th March 2012, Synchronised absolutely stunned the Cheltenham crowd by wiping the floor with his opponents and taking hom the Gold Cup with jockey AP McCoy on board. A first Gold Cup win for owner JP McManus.
This instantly propelled him to the top of the bookies favourites at odds of 7/1 to also win the Grand National for which he was entered.
It didn't start well for him on the day when he decided to run off up the track and when he was finally brought back the National went ahead but a bad fall resulted in the Gold Cup Champion being fatally injured and he became one of two horses, the other being According To Pete, who died that day.
Photo Credit | Meteorshoweryn