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Posted 20 hours ago

Cheltenham Et Al: The Best of Alastair Down

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From 1922 to 1927 he attended Edinburgh Academy, and from 1927 to 1932 attended Marlborough College. By turns moving, uplifting and laugh-out-loud funny, this book provides ample proof of one racing certainty: that no one catches the spirit of racing as Alastair Down does.

In response, it has been made shorter and with a smaller field, so therefore it has removed some of the ferocity but it has made it safer, a bit like the Grand National being made safer; fallers are kind of a rarity in the National now, whereas they were literally all over the place before. I imagine either Willie Mullins or Gordon Elliott which is hardly big news, I mean Gordon is running 60 horses and Willie will probably have 50.I have spanned golden years and I have lived through the matchless age of Champion Hurdles with Sea Pigeon, Night Nurse, Monks Field doing battle over the years and I’ve seen the Kauto Star and Denman years; and the Best Mate years - I’ve been very lucky.

There is some cruelty in its beauty, it’s a very hard place and I have seen desperate tragedies to horse and human there and you know that those risks are being run on your behalf. Lastly, one other thing that I wanted to say, if you have never been to Cheltenham, then you must go! Loved the layout , a short description of a past event or person then the report that followed , half the book had me not wanting to put it down lost in the memories of days past and memories of when I was young and visiting Cheltenham Aintree etc, however always found flat racing a pile of pants so these stories took some chewing. Finance is provided by PayPal Credit (a trading name of PayPal UK Ltd, Whittaker House, Whittaker Avenue, Richmond-Upon-Thames, Surrey, United Kingdom, TW9 1EH).Every day in the 10 days up to the meeting, lots of horses start dropping out due to injury and then all those months of planning and years of planning can easily go up in smoke – it is not a window of opportunity, it’s an arrow slit, and everyone is wanting to all fire through that arrow slit all at once.

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