Tuesday, February 17, 2015

End of an era (but not really, I hope)

We had the end of an era on Saturday as Hugh (seen leading his charge Silken Thoughts and Aidan Coleman into the winner's enclosure after the Flat v. National Hunt Jockeys' race on a very wet Whitbread Gold Cup Day at Sandown a few years ago) finished work here after what I regard (and hope that he regards) as eight happy years.  One always finds that it's time for a change eventually, and Hugh has found that that time has come.  We've remarked previously that the racing life can lose part of its appeal as one becomes less young, and it's inevitable that some of the appeal of life in the saddle wanes eventually.  Anyway, Hugh's off for fresh challenges - but the nice thing is that it won't really be the end of an era, because I suspect and believe (and hope) that he'll remain very much on the radar.  He's been a true stalwart, and a great friend to everyone here for what seems like forever; and God willing will continue as such indefinitely.

To more mundane matters, we have one runner this week, Roy at Kempton in the 8.10 tomorrow night.  We must be heading towards winter as the thought of running in the 8.10 ninety miles from home is no longer as daunting as it was when the sun was down around 4.30 (compared to the 5.30 or so when dusk came today).  He ought to run well, although experience has taught us not to hold our breath.  As you can see in the second and third photographs, it has today been a lovely day (top temperature of 8 degrees, mind, so we won't get carried away) and tomorrow is supposedly set to be similarly glorious.  A good run would be the icing on the cake.

Regarding the comments from the last chapter (and it's always good to get any feedback, thank you), let's hope, Mick, that Fen Flyer can indeed salute the judge before to long.  God willing, he'll run at Wolverhampton in another two-miler in the first half of March, and then I hope will go to the turf.  Regarding the Kylie ticket sales, thank you for putting me right about how long it took for them to sell out, Brian.  I'm afraid that I'd only passed on what I'd heard without checking my facts, which is the hallmark of a poor journo.  I don't think, by the way, that I need check to see whether Madness has sold out yet: if 20,000 Kylie tickets sold in the first couple of days, I'd hazard a guess that the better part of 20 Madness tickets might have been snapped in a similar period.

No comments: