Betty Batt named honorary 41st runner in the 2022 Randox Grand National
Four-year-old Betty Batt was born weighing just 650 grams, and today has been named the honorary 41st runner in the Grand National. Betty’s name will appear in the racecard and around the racecourse alongside the 40 horses and riders taking part in the £1 million race on Saturday 9th April.
The honorary 41st runner initiative raises awareness and funds for Alder Hey Children’s Hospital which has been treating Betty and supporting her family for years. This year marks the 20th anniversary of Aintree’s partnership with the hospital, with it also being named the official charity for the Grand National Festival. Racing fans are encouraged to support Aldey Hey too, which can be done below.
Betty needed constant treatment when she was born in June 2017. Her parents were left devastated when doctors discovered that her bowel had perforated in two places, and Betty was transferred to Alder Hey Hospital for emergency surgery. Betty’s parents Staley and Martha were determined to reunite Betty with her brother and sister at home. With help from the team of professionals at Alder Hey who trained them to support Betty’s medical needs, they were able to get her home for the first time after 13 months in hospital.
Betty’s father, Phil Batt, said: “Betty is just amazing. She is the most delightful, placid and brave little girl. A nurse once said to us, ‘Betty brings out the best in people’. Betty’s journey will continue and the remarkable NHS that saved her countless times will continue on this road with her.
“She is our little miracle and no matter what comes we will all continue to love her with everything we have and with utter joy and immense gratitude to those who never gave up on her and gave us this most precious gift.”
Dickon White, the Jockey Club’s regional director for Aintree racecourse and the north-west, said: “Our relationships with those in the local community are so important to us all here at Aintree, and none more so than the close bond we’ve formed with Alder Hey Children’s Hospital over the past 20 years.
“The work they do is phenomenal and rightly receives not only nationwide, but worldwide recognition. We’re proud to work with them throughout the year, not just during the Randox Grand National festival, and it’s our honour to name Betty as the 41st runner in 2022.”
“By highlighting the Batt family’s story and promoting the work Alder Hey do for children and young people day in, day out we hope to raise awareness and much needed funds to help other youngsters and their families.”