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Alec Marsh

(1908-1996), Jockey and horse-racing official

Sitter associated with 4 portraits

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Danny valler

08 March 2021, 17:16

My late grandmother was his char for years , had a place in London (Cheyenne walk way ) if I'm not mistaken. use to walk to work with her sometimes during the summer hols.

Philip King

12 January 2021, 17:02

Alec Marsh (1908-1996), Jockey and horse-racing official - this gentleman was my great uncle on my mother's side.

The son of a wealthy Staunton-in-the-Vale farmer, Alec Marsh became Champion Amateur Rider under National Hunt Rules in 1934, a position he held for three years.
He Rode as an amateur jockey in three Grand Nationals, the first being in 1937 when his mount Don Bradman fell at the first fence, although they remounted and resumed to complete the course finishing 7th.
Beset by injuries his riding career ended in 1940 after serious injuries to his back in a fall.
He joined the RAF in the Second World War and served in Burma, Singapore and China.
After the War he became a Race-Starter, initially in Calcutta, and went on to become the UK’s Senior Stater for 20 years until retiring in 1972, which was the year he married his second wife Marjorie, whom he had known since they were teenagers.
At one Royal Ascot race meeting he was summoned by the Queen who congratulated him on his skills.
In his retirement at Bottesford, he kept racehorses and was a crack shot at pigeon shooting.

An summary of his horseracing amateur jockey career written by Chas Hammond reads:-
Alexander Marsh was born near Newark, Nottingham, on August 12, 1908, and rode his first winner, Common Good, (left) at Warwick on February 5, 1929.

Alec was the champion amateur three times; 1934-35, 35-36 & 36-37.
A bad fall at Wye in 1940 ended his riding days: he became a starter of note and, in 20 years, started a total of 101 classics.

During the war he was an officer in the RAF.

He rode the winner of the Cheltenham Foxhunters' twice: Empire Night (1935) & Herode Bridge (1936).

Over the Aintree fences he won the Liverpool Foxhunters on Don Bradman in 1936 and also dead-heated on Don Bradman for that year's Grand Sefton Chase.

Alec Marsh died in Grantham on November 17, 1996, aged 88.
Article by Chas Hammond

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