Thursday, 6 March 2014

Two Trainers, a Jockey and Some Hairy Bikers

Bring your autograph pads, don your best outfits, hold your camera-phones at the ready - celebrities are descending on the Cartmel peninsula. As I write, the busy racecourse team (Pam and Naomi) is preparing for the panel of experts attending our annual Cheltenham Festival Preview Night. Meanwhile, my colleagues down the road at Holker Hall (the home of Lord Cavendish) are planning a gala dinner which will be hosted by the hairy biker and dancer Dave Myers, on Friday 28th March. 

The gala event is being staged in order to raise funds for St Marys Hospice in Ulverston and Casa Familiala Madre Colomba, an orphanage in Romania. In addition to a mouth-watering menu planned by Dave Myers, there will be dancing, magical entertainment and we are even expecting Dave’s BBC co-presenter Simon King (the other hairy biker) to join the party. Tickets can be secured for £75 and you might even find yourself sitting next to me. For an additional donation, of £20, you can request a seat that isn’t on the Racecourse Manager’s table. Call 015395 53907 and speak to Sam. 

We’re trying to raise some funds for St Mary’s Hospice at the Preview Night too. Our expert tipsters have been given £100 of charity bets to place on the horses of their choice. All winnings will be paid to the Hospice and we hope that they will be considerable. That, of course, will be down to the panel which includes two festival-winning trainers, a festival-winning jockey and a bloke who looks a bit like one of the hairy bikers. 

He may not thank me for the comparison, but the form expert Marten Julian has quite a bit of facial hair; I don’t know if he can cook or dance – perhaps that will be one of tonight’s questions. Regardless, he always comes armed with excellent stable-intelligence and his own distinct views on the fancied runners. 

Arthur Moore, the Irish trainer, has prepared many Cheltenham winners including Drumgora and Klairon Davies in the Queen Mother Champion Chase. I’m hopeful that he’ll give us the inside line on some of the Irish challengers, including his own Sea Beat – who is among the favourites for the Fred Winter Juvenile Hurdle. Brian Harding rode One Man to win the Queen Mother Champion Chase in 1998 and has another interesting book of rides next week. If you want to find out what they say, you’ll have to come along (hurry - it's Thursday 6th March, 7.00pm) or read the special "Cheltenham Edition" of the “Cartmel Blogspot” this weekend. 

Jimmy Moffatt is our local man and I am expecting him to tell us that Morning Royalty has been secretly sold by owner Eileen Milligan to JP McManus and will be ridden by Tony McCoy in the County Hurdle having been backed to win millions. He probably won’t, but I’m going to have £1 each way on him now, at 66/1,  just in case.

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