Like a lot of Grand National horses Specify started with a considerable lack of success and seeming absence of promise. The horse changed hands several times in it’s earliest years. It’s partly for this romantic reason that the Grand National remains a touchingly achievable goal to racehorse owners, as a perceived modest horse can be elevated to superstar.
His fifth owner was holiday camp supremo Sir Fred Pontin, and in his colours he raced in the 1970 National, going well before getting brought down at Beechers Brook on the second circuit.
By Specific, out of Ora Lamae in 1971’s National the brown gelding was given a superb ride by John Cook who spotted a gap at the Elbow, and hard rode the horse to a neck victory over Black Secret. Having shown no winning form that season he was priced a large 28/1.
Specify would have another tilt in 1972’s Grand National, priced at 22-1 he finished sixth in heavy going. After that race he would never again finish first, but his name is secure in the history books.
Starting Price: 28/1
Age: 9 years
Winning Distance: neck
Owner: Fred Pontin
Jockey: John Cook
Weight Carried: 10st 13lbs
2nd: Black Secret