George Atkinson has placed bets on the Grand National each year since the 1940s but he has never managed to back a winner, and fears the 2014 race is his last chance.
And after such a long run of betting, he has decided to pin his hopes on 2011 Cheltenham Gold Cup winner Long Run, owned by Robert Waley-Cohen and trained by Nicky Henderson.
Mr Atkinson said: "Any winner is nice - but the national would be a dream come true - I could die a happy man."
George, from Swaffham, Norfolk, placed his first bet on the National in the 1940s after leaving the Army.
He said: "I can't remember the name as it lost - in fact they all lose. I've never even had a place.
"I was once told to back Oxo in 1959 but I didn't place a bet on it - it won and I've regretted it for 55 years."
The widowed father-of-seven goes to his local branch of William Hill in Swaffham twice a day and the company has given him a £103 bet - £51.50 each way - and he has decided to put it on Long Run - whose odds of winning are currently at 14/1
Yvonne Dobinson, manager, said: "George is proof of how hard it is to win the Grand National but we will be cheering Long Run on for his sake."