Water Jump, Height: 2ft 6in, Width: 12ft
The first circuit of the Grand National comes to an end with the sixteenth and final obstacle – the Water Jump.
If the field can emerge unscathed over it, they will then enjoy the roar of the grandstands, pass what will be the finishing post in a circuit’s time, and then take a near 90-degree turn to their left to start the second lap and go through it all over again.
Like The Chair, the Water Jump is only taken on the first lap of the Aintree track, and at 2ft 6in tall you wouldn’t think there would be many that fail to successfully take it. But it’s the huge expanse of water – which measures more than 12ft – that poses the biggest challenge….those that catch their hind legs are prone to hitting the deck after the obstacle.
Having already endured the 15 fences that immediately precede it, tired legs can struggle to take this final flight that comes a matter of yards after The Chair.
Famous Fallers at the Water Jump
You have to go all the way back to 2009 to find the last time that a horse fell at the Water Jump – the unfortunate party was Zabenz, ridden by Tom O’Brien.
Tony McCoy once pulled up the 8/1 favourite Iris Bleu here in 2003, but for the most part fallers have been thin on the ground here – just a handful have bitten the dust at the Water Jump in the past few decades.