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Rule The World does just that

Rule The World and a triumphant David MullinsRule The World and a triumphant David Mullins
© Photo Healy Racing

Rule The World broke his duck over fences in remarkable style by landing the Crabbie's Grand National for Mouse Morris and David Mullins at Aintree.

The Sulamani gelding was remarkably breaking his duck over fences at the 14th attempt under Mullins, the pair wrestling the race from David Bass and The Last Samuri on the long run in.

The 13-year-old Vics Canvas was also involved in a three-way battle from the last, but he had to settle for third with Gilgamboa fourth. Goonyella stayed on from well back to grab fifth.

In a race run on ground described as Soft, Heavy in places just before the off, there was no hiding place as the field went along at a good gallop led by Aachen and The Romford Pele

The latter departed at the sixth fence and Aachen soon fell back through the field as the big hitters in the market, namely The Last Samuri and Many Clouds took over up front.

Many Clouds made a bad mistake as The Last Samuri turned the screw late on and that put paid to his challenge, but Vics Canvas was soon breathing down Kim Bailey's horse's neck.

All the while Mullins was creeping into contention on Rule The World, and after a good jump at the last Morris' horse stayed on best for a fantastic victory.

Mullins said: "It's unbelievable. I just couldn't expect things to have gone better.

"There was one little mishap at the fourth-last, but thank god I came out (the other side). Everything went to plan really.

"Credit to Mouse, he's produced this horse without having won over fences. Then there's me, who's never even walked around the Grand National track.

"Mouse is a genius and he's the best man in the world for preparing a horse for one day.

"I'm very thankful to Michael and Eddie O'Leary (of Gigginstown) for giving me the chance.

"That's the best ride I've ever got off a horse and it's the best feeling to come back into a place like this.

"It was just brilliant."

Morris was almost lost for words after the race, but paid tribute to his late son, Christopher, who tragically died last summer from suspected carbon monoxide poisoning while travelling in South America.

Having also won the Irish National on Easter Monday with Rogue Angel, Morris said: "I don't know what to say. To have the two in a couple of weeks is unbelievable. I've a lad who's doing overtime for me up above.

"He (Rule The World) wasn't badly named, was he?"

As ever the race was not short of drama with the well-fancied Holywell parting company with Richie McLernon at the second fence, while dual King George winner Silviniaco Conti was pulled up.

Last year's winner Many Clouds travelled well for much of the way after having sat prominently before making a bad mistake which ultimately cost him a repeat chance of victory.

Although only 12 of the 39 runners that set out managed to get round, initial reports were that all horses had returned safely.

Morris has never made any secret of the regard in which he holds Rule The World, who has suffered his fair share of injury problems.

He said: "It's Disneyland - fairytale stuff.

"He's fractured his pelvis twice. Before that I always thought he was the best horse I ever had, how good would he be with a proper rear end on him?

"He had a nice weight and he's a class horse on his day. I know he was a maiden (over fences), but he's been running good races - Grade One races - and banging on the door.

"This is next best to the Gold Cup (won with War Of Attrition in 2006)."

Gigginstown supremo Michael O'Leary also won the Gold Cup at Cheltenham last month with Don Cossack and said: "This is the cream on top.

"I don't know what to feel, I'm numb. I thought I had no chance in it, I wanted to win a Gold Cup and it was beyond dreams that I could win a Grand National.

"To win a Gold Cup, Irish National and Grand National in one year - I think I should stop, it's not going to get any better than this."