The skeleton of the 1900 Grand National winner, Ambush II, is going on display at World Museum Liverpool in time for this year’s race at Aintree (Saturday 5 April).
Clem Fisher, curator of vertebrate zoology at World Museum Liverpool, said: “Ambush II was a memorable winner of the Grand National and it is fitting that he should go on display at this time.”
Ambush II was the last royal horse to win the Grand National and was owned by the Prince of Wales — the future Edward VII.
Trained and ridden to victory by Algy Anthony (1872-1923), Ambush II carried 11 stone three pounds to beat the great Manifesto.
No horse ran more times in the Grand National than Manifesto, who won the race in 1897 and 1899 ridden by George Williamson.
In the 1900 race the two horses were level coming into the final straight but Ambush II, pursued by Barsac, raced forward to pass the post first, with Manifesto finishing third.
It was not until more than 50 years later that a royal horse was involved in a dramatic finish. In 1956 the Queen Mother’s Devon Loch, ridden by Dick Francis, famously slipped while leading the field.
Ambush II was bred in Ireland in 1894. Little is known as to how or why his skeleton came to Liverpool — unless it was because of the Grand National association.
The skeleton was held at the University of Liverpool’s Veterinary School for many years before being given to Liverpool museum in 1961.
The World Museum Liverpool is on William Brown Street and admission is free. Tel: 0151 478 4393