KIM BAILEY could not hide his pride after The Last Samuri, the hope of Andoversford in Gloucestershire, had run a battling second to Rule The World in the Crabbie’s Grand National at Aintree on Saturday.

The Last Samuri jumped superbly and was always prominent alongside his fellow 8-1 joint-favourite Many Clouds throughout the four-and-a –quarter-mile race.

But when last year’s winner Many Clouds made a bad mistake and faded to come home last of the 16 finishers The Last Samuri was left to hold off a clutch of Irish raiders.

He started up the long run-in in the lead – prompting Bailey to think he could repeat his National-winning glory with Mr Frisk in 1990 – especially when his brave chestnut fought off nearest rival Vics Canvas.

But he had no answer to the late rally of 33-1 winner Rule The World from the elbow and was beaten six lengths.

It was eight lengths back to Vics Canvas in third with Gilgamboa in fourth.

The Last Samuri was the only horse in the first six not trained in Ireland.

Bailey said: "Nothing is over until they cross the line, the horse tried his heart out and he jumped for fun.

"It's the longest run-in you can possibly imagine. I was standing here screaming ¬– my voice has gone.

"We've beaten the third horse, but another horse has come on the outside from nowhere.

"I'm just so proud. We'll do it all over again next year 12lb worse off."

The Last Samuri’s jockey David bass said: "He's run an absolute blinder. I can't fault the horse, he's as brave as a lion. I'm just gutted to finish second.

"He travelled, he jumped, we fought off the third horse and it's just gutting to be beaten by one.

"I thought going to the elbow that if we just kept going we might finish with a wet sail. Anyway, hopefully next year."

The win for Rule The World has capped an exceptional CV for winning trainer Mouse Morris who won the Irish Grand National a matter of weeks ago with Rogue Angel, having won the Cheltenham Gold Cup with War Of Attrition in 2006.

That horse and Rule The World are owned by Ryanair boss Michael O’Leary.

It has been a testing 12 months for the popular County Tipperary handler Morris following the tragic death of his son Christopher – known as ‘Tiffer’ – of suspected carbon monoxide poisoning at the age of 30 in Argentina last summer.

Unusually nine-year-old Rule The World had never previously won a race over fences – having twice fractured a pelvis – and was ridden by 19-year-old David Mullins having his first National ride.