Champions Review

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Jocky Bob Champion id diagnosed with cancer, but rather that succumb to the disease he fights and goes on to win the 1981 Grand National on Aldiniti.


The screen account of jockey Bob Champion’s winning battle with cancer and his comeback to racing glory on Aldaniti in the Grand National — a story so heartclutchingly corny no one would ever have bought it if it wasn’t true — is written and treated as a formulaic cross between a Disease of the Week TV movie and Rocky on a saddle.

But John Hurt, the greatest sufferer in British Equity, does a fine and suitably moving job as a not-entirely-likeable character who simply refuses to accept death or defeat.

And that bloody Grand National hymn will have you all sobbing.

A moving portrayal of one Britain's greatest sporting heroes.