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Sell-out crowd expected at 2022 Grand National as prize-money returns to the £1m mark
Aintree Racecourse gave a signal that horse racing in the UK is returning to normal by revealing that the 2022 Grand National will return to its pre-Covid value of £1 million. The famous Merseyside course is also reintroducing the traditional weights ceremony and it is now likely that the famous steeplechase will take place in front of a bumper crowd for the first time in three years.
When Rachael Blackmore made history by becoming the first female jockey to win the race aboard Minella Times in 2021, the National was worth £750,000 but there will be a seven-figure purse for the 2022 renewal.
Dickon White, Jockey Club north-west regional director, said: “We’re delighted that we’re putting the race back to £1m with Randox’s support.
“The prize-money level across the three days is incredibly important to us. We want to reward the best horses to come and run at Aintree.”
Aintree is anticipating a full house on April 9th for a race which was cancelled in 2020 and run behind closed doors the following year, tickets selling out fast for all grandstands and terraces.
“The demand for admission tickets and for hospitality is higher than it’s ever been before,” White said. “That is possibly in part down to the Rachael Blackmore factor, after her win last year.
“We’re really thrilled with the interest in people coming to attend and we’re planning towards a full crowd but we are in constant discussions with our local authority and our director of public health about the Covid situation in and around Merseyside. We’ll ensure we have the protocols in place to deliver what’s required.”
Last year’s Grand National weights were revealed at Aintree Racecourse courtesy of Racing TV but this year there will be a special ceremony at Liverpool’s Rum Warehouse on 15th February.
White continued: “We are planning for an event but are very aware that if the situation changes and additional restrictions are put in place, we will change plans.
“But the event is incredibly important for the Randox Grand National. It’s been a big part of the promotion of the event. Over the last 20 or 25 years the horsemen have become really engaged with the whole three days at Aintree and this is an integral part of it.
“The Rum Warehouse is one of the great event spaces we have in Liverpool since it was capital of culture in 2008. We’re looking to run an event of a similar size to those we have historically but it’s a large room and we’ll social distance people as best we can.”