This morning I read a fantastic article on Horseracingchat.co.uk all about the Betfair Chase which is taking place next Saturday at Haydock Park. Having attended every single renewal of this race it brought back plenty of memories to me, but especially my recollections of 2008 are the most vivid in my mind. You can read the Memory Lane article here: Memory Lane: The Betfair Chase
Here is my own personal memory of the 2008 renewal:
It was 22nd Nov 2008 and I’d virtually done my nuts on the first three races prior to the Betfair Chase. I remember I had just £15 left to bet with. I can vividly remember thinking I’m going to have to call home and ask for a cash transfer. Whether the Gods or Angels intervened I don’t know but some divine inspiration came from somewhere. I decided I’d oppose King Kauto!
I toyed between a £1 permed exacta on Exotic Dancer, Snoopy Loopy, Tamarinbleu and Cloudy Lane or placing three £5 singles. I’d already ruled Ollie Magern out of the reckoning and was taking a punt on opposing Kauto. I opted for the singles and backed Snoopy Loopy @ 66/1, Tamarinblue @33/1 and Exotic Dancer @ 4/1 – all with the same rails bookie.
I took my place in the stands to watch the race unfold and it was clear coming down the straight Kauto Star was under some pressure. However, he began to rally and as the people around me screamed his name I began to feel slightly nauseous as they approached the last. “What a disaster” I thought to myself as I stared at the last fence. Then all of a sudden my life began to run in slow motion, a kind of surreal capture in time. Kauto Star slithered, his hind legs went from underneath him and as I gasped I could see Tamarinblue still leading the race. But then Tamarinblue began to get exhausted and Snoopy Loopy rallied to snatch the race, and all of a sudden my head felt like it had popped and the slow motion moment went and my body was overwhelmed with feelings of euphoria. I’d almost go as far as saying it was nearly better than sex! 😀
When I went to the bookie to collect my £330 I said “I cannot believe that just happened”. He jokingly said “If you don’t believe it, give it back then”.
How much did the exacta pay you ask? Well, it did actually pay £526 but the memory I have from that day was priceless and is why I love National Hunt racing so much.
Picture: Racing Post
Today’s fancies are at Plumpton:
12.50 Plump- Looking Hopeful (e/w).
1.20 Plump- Sweet Irony (e/w).
1.50 Plump- Billy Merriot (e/w).
2.20 Plump- Lord Singer (e/w).
2.50 Plump- Petit Ecuyer (e/w).
3.20 Plump- Pacha Doudairies (win).
3.50 Plump- Viva Steve & Mulligan (e/w).