Weblog: The view from the Hills
Explosive Wimbledon makes Charlie's night
Wow. Blog frequency is now increasing with such velocity that I'll be in one-a-day David Carr territory at this rate. Does that man ever sleep by the way? Or does he actually blog in his sleep?
Big night for the girls with our sponsored Oaks final. First assignment was to present the opening race trophy. I’ve never seen Wimbledon so soggy, torrential downpours of epic proportions. Horizontal rain is not conducive to presentations.
I’m generally not a lover of the festive season, but it was hard not to get carried away by SW19 atmosphere was tinsel-tastic, and the new corporate boxes across the oval looked hugely popular.
As Wimbledon know how to do a good turkey, they also know how to do a pretty good card, with some scintillating racing in store in the build-up to the glittering final.
The progressive Lil Risky posted a cracking sprint performance, cue post-race interview with Darryl and Mark Wallis, which I stood to watch.
Bad move as the massive production light EXPLODED right next to me and I jumped about six feet in the air. Both presenter and interviewee remained motionless, unflinching. Even the dog was unmoving whilst I was suffering from cardiovascular meltdown. Consummate professionals.
The hurdlers were up next where we saw defeat for Olivers Twist, which would have been a big loser for us; however the well-backed Razldazl Rioga soon put us in our place with a stylish box-to-tape victory in the penultimate of our sponsored contests. Dolores’s charge held off Boher Paddy’s late blast in a thriller, and we slapped him with a 25-1 quote for the big one in May.
The final was all over at the first bend when Silverview Perky shot clear. Her record-threatening 28.21sec from the quarters led us to insert her into the Derby betting at 20-1, and I’d love connections to give it a shot.
It’s hard to believe that a legend such as Charlie Lister had yet to add the premier prize for the girlies to his extensive roll of honour. But what a way to get that first victory, with a hound the calibre of Silverview Perky. At one point it even looked as though he’d get the one-two with Boher Princess, fair play to Droopys Aretha though who out-ran her double-carpet estimations.
It’s now been announced that William Hill are upping the prize-money for our sponsorships the Oaks and St Leger from £6,000 and £8.000 to £15,000. They’re both premier competitions and deserve a reward befitting the accolade, and the announcement couldn’t have come at a better time than on the eve of the new Racing Post Greyhound TV channel launch.
Noting the ongoing Jonathan 'Cracker King' Kay saga, the latest standings have seen his unbeaten status come to an end after a losing hat-trick of Dolores Ruth, Jennie Prest and myself – well it was Oaks night after all!