The 2021 Irish Grand National run at Fairyhouse racecourse in Ireland was won by the 150-1 racehorse Freewheelin Dylan. This was a historic race when the biggest ever priced racehorse won the BoyleSports Irish Grand National.
The 9 year old racehorse was ridden by jockey Ricky Doyle and trained by Dermot A McLoughlin and owned by Shelia Mangan who works for the trainer. Freewheelin Dylan, is by Curtain Time and out of a Beat All mare and was purchased for €13,000. He has six wins under Rules with over £280,000 in prize money. Freewheelin Dylan last ran in a Grade Three at Punchestown back in October 2020.
Freewheelin Dylan led the Irish Grand National race from start to finish.
Jockey Ricky Doyle said “I could not believe it – I thought everything was too good to be true! His jumping is just out of this world, but how well he travelled and the rhythm he was in. Turning in I could feel horses on me and I could feel him picking up. I was trying to do the maths in my head and was thinking ‘did I jump the last the first time’? I was in a dream the whole way. He’s a proper summer ground horse. I won a Midlands National on him in the same way. I was just so happy with everything that I couldn’t believe it. This means everything to me. I love this sport and I love horses – I couldn’t care if there was nothing to the winner. I’m over the moon. It’s unbelievable. I was excited to ride him because of how well he jumps but winning it is something I’ve dreamt about. It’s madness, this is the best day of my life by far – I cannot believe it.”
Trainer Dermot A McLoughlin said after the race “It’s great – it went to plan. I said to Ricky ‘he likes to bowl along in front and jumping is his forte, so use him up’. I was a bit concerned about not getting a run into him. I said turning into the straight that we’d better start shouting, because I knew he’d stay going. When he came in off grass last year, we said in September-time we’d aim for this. It was a race I always wanted to have runners in, let alone try to win it. My father rode the winner, so I was always trying to follow.”