Welcome to the new Independent website. We hope you enjoy it and we value your feedback. Please contact us here.


Letter: Red Rum deserves equal first

Your correspondent describes it as "sacrilege" to mention the horses Red Rum and Arkle in the same breath ("Q&A", Sport, 28 December).

Few would argue that Arkle was the superior horse and perhaps the greatest steeplechaser of all time. However, Red Rum's name is synonymous with courage and stamina which elevated him to the status of a national hero. His speciality, the Grand National, earned him arecord - three wins - that is unlikely to be beaten. And remember, he was competing at Aintree before the fences were modified. He also became the first horse to win both the Grand National and the Scottish Grand National in the same year (another record), was a close second in the Hennessy Gold Cup and, contrary to Mr Carter's suggestion, was actually placed in many of his races.

But the greatest compliment, perhaps, is that he mattered so much to so many ordinary people. He was loved in the great tradition of a hero because his success was achieved through his own guts and determination.

G Fitzgerald