I am extremely anti gambling, so why is there a page on this site with THIS name?

In a field near Market Harborough, on the Leicester Round, very close to that bridge, there is a monument in a field.

lottery

The monument simply says “Lottery Feb 21 1866”

The story behind the monument is fascinating. A few years ago I was talking with a “bloke down the pub”, who told me it was a monument to the first horse to win the Grand National.

Apparently Lottery was the name of the horse and it (I didn’t know if it was a lady horse or gentleman horse at this stage) was so good and won by a huge margin. Apparently the margin was so massive that Lottery was banned the next year.

This lovely page explains that the 1839 race at Liverpool has been recognised as the first running of what is now the Grand National. All gentleman riders. Captain Becher fell into a brook.

Ridden by Jem Mason and owned by Mr. J. Elmore, Lottery won by 3 lengths.

Lottery didn’t do well in 1840, falling at “The Wall” ¬†as shown in the race report for 1840, but the health needs of jockeys was somewhat different from today, “his jockey Barker was severely injured by another faller Cruickshank, and had to be taken from the course to a local farmhouse where he had to spend some days after recovering”.

I found an interesting write up by Jonathan Calder, who walked this field in better weather than me!