Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Cover of the Rolling Stone

How's this for a remarkable coincidence?  There were three generations of Berrys here for a couple of days last week (ie my father Claude and my son Anthony, as well as this one, obviously).  There was a breeze-up sale in Tattersalls at the time and we went up there one evening to have our dinner.  We looked into the auditorium and watched one, and only one, lot being sold - and the lot which, quite by chance, happened to be was the ordinarily-bred War Front colt who smashed the European breeze-up record by being bought for 1.15 million guineas.  I'll be interested to follow his progress.  He might end up proving to have been well bought.  In fact, if he wins a Group One race, he almost certainly will have been well bought; if he doesn't, he almost certainly won't.

Our dinner was really good, and probably represented some of the best value on offer at Park Paddocks that evening.  It certainly represented better value than that on offer at Ascot Sales complex (ie the racecourse stables and canteen) two days previously, when I'd found buying my lunch quite a sobering experience.  Buoyed up by seeing Frankie (Douchkirk) fetch a higher price than one might have expected and seeing him go to a good home too, I opted for Ascot's version of the filling station 'meal deal'. £3.80 in the BP station at the bottom of the Bury Road is the standard - so £6.20 at Brightwells was quite a shock, especially for a less substantial sandwich.  I asked the woman behind the counter whether she had added it up correctly (I had no way of knowing as nothing had the price on it) but unfortunately, as she grimly confirmed, it seemed that she had.

Enough of my whingeing: we've had some more lovely weather, as you can see.  We've had rain forecast for most of the last few days, but each day it has not appeared, which is rather nice, even if rather disconcerting, as one generally starts to feel uneasy if the weather is too settled for too long.  The Easter weekend was very pleasant, and it was good to see large crowds at all the meetings which we watched on television, eg Fakenham, Plumpton, Yarmouth etc., on Easter Monday - which was an interesting antidote to all the Good Friday over-reaction, which seemed to be based on people forgetting that Bank Holiday racing is generally very, very popular anyway.  And racecourse full of large crowds of happy racegoers are always lovely to see.

What is also lovely to see was Gus' reaction today when Emma came back from the newsagent.  Anyway, Gus is always whingeing that nobody pays him any attention (which I don't actually think is true anyway).  I caught him singing the other day, "I've got a lot of little teenaged blue-eyed groupies who will do anything I say.  I've got a genuine Indian guru, teaching me a better way.  I've got all the friends that money can buy, so I never have to be alone, and I keep getting richer - but I can't get my picture on the cover of the 'Rolling Stone'".  (That last part, at least, is true).  Anyway, he's naturally unlikely ever to get his picture on the cover of the 'Rolling Stone' - but he has got his picture in this week's 'Country Life', which is very exciting.

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