March 26, 2009 at 23:56 #218543Ultimate NightmareMember
- Total Posts 326
Jeff Stelling is Mr soccer saturday, how he makes entertainment out of poor "experts" amazes me. For me on a saturday if me accers still running i’l watch the races, if not it’s Jeff suffering another beating from his beloved Hartlepool. The battery powered James Brown is far more entertaining than Thommo and gang. Have to agree with most of the rest though Max, good post.March 27, 2009 at 00:46 #218552
Cheers UN. Enjoying the discussion.
Bullers, I watched SP go down to the post that day and knew immediately that he’d gone, just like his mother did. He looked like he had flu. Conversely, I’ve never seen a horse go down in any race as well as Pride did. A fine mare. Unfortunately, I’d lumped on SP at 4/1 – before I watched him go down and felt it was disloyal to cover. Don’t they say you should never get emotional about horses? No wonder I had to go back to work.
Mulls, some good ideas there – quite radical actually. One thing – would you be happy to have The Derby again in the half time break of a football match?March 27, 2009 at 01:19 #218556douginhoMember
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A lot of good points and suggestions made here. Whether individuals agree with the points or not, what do people think the chances are of things changing in the future? A wednesday Derby with a 6pm start? Would be radical but I’d be happy with that.
With regards to fixture congestion, what happened to those "matinee" meetings that used to start at 11am or so on a saturday…a few more of those in spring/autumn time in city locations could attract some football fans who can go racing then onto the footy at 3pm. Maybe they were binned as they didn’t work, anyone know???March 27, 2009 at 01:24 #218558
I went to one Doug, – thoroughly enjoyed it. Weren’t many there, though.
The twilight meetings are running at Southwell shortly – beginning at 5.40 and finishing at 8.10. People can go to work and go straight to racing after without having to go home to change. We might be on to something…March 27, 2009 at 01:31 #218561douginhoMember
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If the twilight or matinee meetings were good cards that might give them a chance of being successful. (for example on saturday you have kempton with decent quality that could provide a matinee meeting in stead of competing with Nad Al Sheba and Donny).
I am glad the evening meetings are almost upon us, quite like it when there are two afternoon meetings and two evening meetings. Nice spread through the day.March 27, 2009 at 02:17 #218568davidjohnsonMember
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Wouldn’t be surprised if the twilight cards end up as free entry. They should be with them being switched Great Leighs fixtures. Interesting though that neither Kempton or Wolves wanted them as they were previously floodlit fixtures.March 27, 2009 at 02:29 #218570mulls74Participant
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You would hope the Derby would be a strong enough event not to have to be at half-time during the football.
It would also help if the Racing Post was a bit cheaper than £1.80 because I am sure that puts a lot of people off buying it.March 27, 2009 at 02:40 #218577DroneParticipant
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I thought the Midweekers would have more support. Ricky, particularly on the Derby issue.
In my heart I’m a midweeker too Max, particularly from a point of view of going racing, as the ‘big’ weekday meetings lack the heady vapours of alcohol and testosterone common to their weekend counterparts.
And like you (I guess) at a young age I too found allure in the fact that ‘important’ races and meetings were being staged when the hoi-polloi had their noses to the 9-5 grindstone. A world that just has to be attractive to those dreamers for whom the words ‘steady job’ induce a deathly pallor and cold sweat.
The ‘pattern’ of Flat racing dreamt up when the proletariat had no disposable pounds and therefore didn’t matter has until very recently – and still largely is – geared towards catering for the wealthy or retired, workshy or unemployed; those polar ‘duke and dustmen’ opposites who have long found a common passion in the racehorse.
Like I say personally I’d be more than content if that lovely sequence of midweek May ‘festivals’, a Wednesday Derby, and weekday back-end Newmarket Group 1s would have carried on for evermore but the head tells me it reeks too much of archaic privilege today, and the hardworking with their now disposable pounds are denied the chance to enjoy live much of the best Flat racing, be that on-course or on the box.
You have banged on repeatedly about marketing racing to attract a new young audience in significant numbers. One way that would exquisetly fail to get young bums on seats and sofas is to insist a fixture list tailor-made for a 19th century minority is tailor-made too for a 21st century majority.
However if more of the flagship races are to be moved to weekends then I would very much agree with the points made about getting rid of the minor meetings that – even now – just add unwanted, unloved, and unneeded clutter. Words applicable to about half the Flat fixture list actually
Btw being an anally-retentive pedant I would just like to point out that your otherwise encyclopaedic list of ‘big’ meetings contains three errors:
When I was a lad the Plate meeting was three days, and both the Western and Cambridgeshire meetings four days
What about Yarmouth’s Eastern meeting? Better than Brighton’s three-dayer surelyMarch 27, 2009 at 02:59 #218581Ultimate NightmareMember
- Total Posts 326
A wednesday Derby with a 6pm start? Would be radical but I’d be happy with that.
As long as it’s not on the beeb, they certainly know how to kill whatever excitement the day throws up. give me a handicap any day as long as its not on the side of a hill. Sorry freak show IMO. So it was,is, whatever!March 27, 2009 at 03:22 #218586mulls74Participant
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Summer midweek evenings – it’s the future (like garlic bread)March 27, 2009 at 10:24 #218613seabirdParticipant
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ColinMarch 27, 2009 at 18:15 #218662graysonscolumnParticipant
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With regards to fixture congestion, what happened to those "matinee" meetings that used to start at 11am or so on a saturday…
That’s a point, actually. I remember all of the meetings on Cup Final Saturday starting at 11ish for most of the 1980s. One of my colleagues tells a good story of the year in which he started with the Bangor NH meeting on Cup Final morning, progressed to Bredwardine point-to-point in the afternoon, and then took in Warwick’s late-lamented Saturday evening NH card to finish off. Nice work!
The patron saint of lower-grade fare. A gently critical friend of point-to-pointing. Kindness is a political act.March 27, 2009 at 23:39 #218721DeadlySinsMember
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Matinee meetings- was that the ‘official’ term for the meetings starting around 11am a few years back?
Me and a friend have been trying for weeks to remember what they were called.March 28, 2009 at 00:23 #218741CarryOnKatieParticipant
- Total Posts 566
That’s a point, actually. I remember all of the meetings on Cup Final Saturday starting at 11ish for most of the 1980s.
An early example of how Racing bent over backwards to accomodate Football. I remember when this was the one Saturday in the year that NO racing was generally televised.
Funnily, this is no longer the case! (Especially as many of us – myself included have moaned at Racing being pushed out of the schedules for other sports)March 28, 2009 at 02:53 #218775
A beautifully argued and scripted post, Drone. Nothing really to add except to acknowledge your point of view…
…and to tip my Trilby hat to Yarmouth.
Best of luck to you – and everyone – for the flat season.
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