At one point trainer Nigel Twiston-Davies was in danger of not having any 2013 Grand National Runners but with the confirmation that Imperial Commander would run and the subsequent withdrawals that left the door open for Major Malarkey he did, thankfully, have two horses in the running.
Major Malarkey was 10 years old and his progression had followed a steady pattern of starting with hurdles and progressing through the handicapped chase ranks, moving from Class 4 races through to nine Class 1 races which put him in a much better position then some of the other runners.
He had four runs in the season prior to the race but his form hadn’t been spectacular with only one second place and that was in December 2012 at Sandown. Since then he had only managed a 6th and a 5th before being pulled up at Uttoxeter on March 16th 2013, in the Midlands Grand National.
He had finished 2nd in that race in 2012 but this time around was 5lbs higher and was pulled up after just the first fence. He had gone off at 13/2 but Sam Twiston-Davies clearly knew that the Major didn’t want to run and exited after one jump.
He had placed at over 4m and was only one of a few runners in the National to actually do that and the ground should have suited him on the day. He went off at 50/1 with Tom Scudamore on board and managed a respectable 11th place finish though that is still outside of the money.
He may be back in 2014 and hopefully he won’t have to wait for his place like he did in 2013.