Liverpool, England (AP) — Belinda McClung and Deborah Thomson bought One For Arthur in 2013 because they wanted an activity to enjoy while their partners were out playing golf.
Little did the “Two Golf Widows,” as they are now labeled, know that they were purchasing a future Grand National winner.
Ridden by a jockey competing in the world’s toughest steeplechase for the first time, One for Arthur took the lead last Saturday in the 4 1/2-mile race after jumping the 30th and last fence before holding off Cause of Causes in the famous long run to the post at Aintree.
One for Arthur became only the second Scottish winner of the race and won at odds of 14-1 on a sun-kissed day in northern England.
“We just wanted a horse to have some fun,” a giddy Thomson told The Associated Press, with a glass of champagne in her hand. “The dream for most racehorse owners would be to win the Grand National and we are lucky we found a horse to do it. I can’t quite believe it.”
McClung and Thomson are old friends from Scotland who grew apart after leaving school but become close again in recent years. With their partners spending most weekends on the golf course, they decided to get into the horse-racing business.
“We were at Kelso races and we’d had a lot of gin,” McClung recalled about the day 3 1/2 years ago, when they chose to buy a horse.
Before last Saturday, the eight-year-old One For Arthur had won six races for its co-owners over the past three years. None of those victories compare to the 1 million pound Grand National.