Aintree legend Ginger McCain passed away on Monday morning at the age of 80. The former trainer died at home in Chesire following a short illness
McCain will forever be associated with Red Rum, whom he saddled to win the Grand National three times, in 1973, 1974 and 1977. He later won a fourth National in 2004 with Amberleigh House. In 2006, Ginger handed over the licence to his son Donald, who won the 2010 National with Ballabriggs.
McCain’s death comes just two days before his 81st birthday on Wednesday. As well as Donald jnr,McCain is survived by wife Beryl and daughter Joanne.
His son Donald said on Wednesday: “My dad passed away this morning and the family was with him.
“I would like to think he is a legend, and although it has just happened, I have been ringing round a few people and everyone has been fantastic, they only have good things to say about him.
“My mother Beryl and sister Joanne are okay although we are all a little raw at the moment. It wasn’t unexpected. He hasn’t been well for a week or so and while that hasn’t made it easier to deal with, we were sort of prepared.
“He has been a massive help to me and we couldn’t do what we are doing now without him. He’s never questioned any improvements we wanted to make, we’ve got on and done it, and he’s thoroughly enjoyed the way things are going. As a family we have only have only wanted to be around nice horses, and I like to think he’s been absolutely over the moon with the way things have been going.
“If I can do half as much with my life as he fitted into his I won’t have done too bad. He certainly had a very full life, a very enjoyable life and a very exciting one.
“The whole business has been built up by my dad, and I wouldn’t be where I am without him so it would be great if I could keep the place going.”
“I learned so much from my dad about Grand National horses and training, but the biggest thing he taught me was that if you are good, straight and honest you’ll never come to too much harm.”
A statement from Beryl McCain read: “Donald, Ginger as we all knew him, passed away peacefully in his sleep after a short illness this morning – he would have been 81 on Wednesday.
“There will be a private family funeral followed by a later memorial service, for which there will be more information in the coming weeks.
“Joanne, Donald jnr and I appreciate all the kindness we are being shown and, at this difficult time, would appreciate it if we were afforded some privacy.”