One For Arthur owner ‘can’t believe’ he won Grand National

Deborah Thomson, far right, celebrates the win. Picture: PA
Deborah Thomson, far right, celebrates the win. Picture: PA
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GRAND National winner One For Arthur is owned by the ‘Two Golf Widows’ who bought the horse to keep busy while their husbands were on the course.

The pair, aka Deborah Thomson, from Gullane, East Lothian, and Belinda McClung, a steward at Kelso, teamed up to buy the horse three years ago.

After the win Thomson said: “I just can’t believe it. It’s been an absolutely amazing day. Arthur just cruised that race, Derek rode so well and I’m just a bit lost for words really.

“I just can’t believe we’ve won the Grand National - it’s fantastic.”

READ MORE: One For Arthur wins Grand National

McClung added: “I thought this morning, it’s baking hot so there’s no pressure now, he’s not going to win on that ground but I have to say he’s just shown his class today.

“He’s amazing and he got a great ride.

“Our husbands play golf together hence the name and we wanted something to do. The plan was conceived after a lot of gin at Kelso one day!”

Trainer Lucinda Russell, ably assisted by former champion jockey Peter Scudamore at her Kinross base, finally laid the ghost of a Scottish winner at the National to rest after a long wait since Rubstic’s win in 1979.

Scudamore, whose father Michael won the race in 1959 aboard Oxo, said: “It’s very satisfying. The horse looked well in the paddock. I felt we’d done everything we possibly could to get this horse here.

“I was worried about the ground. If you had said to me an hour before the race you can take him home now as the ground is too fast I would have put him in the lorry.

“It’s lovely to give Derek the opportunity. He’s a good horseman. Jack Berry House got him back. This is a great advert for them. They must be as delighted as I am that he’s won.

“It’s great thrill. I’ve got my dad’s lucky tie on. I don’t usually believe in those things, but there’s obviously something in it.”

Given their location in Scotland, Russell and Scudamore have come up with their own unique accommodation for the big meetings.

“We have a campervan,” she said.

“It’s the best thing we’ve ever done! We stayed over here last night, had plenty to drink, didn’t have to worry about driving home and then saved an hour getting here this morning.

“We then took the dog for a walk, it’s brilliant and we can highly recommend it.

“We’ve just signed a sponsorship deal with Edinburgh Gin. That was good timing wasn’t it!”

A number of the riders, including Fox, were reported by the starter to have “approached the tape before the flag was raised”. The stewards forwarded the matter to the British Horseracing Authority for it to be considered at a later date.