'Lester Piggott 100 per cent guarantees me that Denman was better than Arkle'
Harry Findlay, one of the most colourful characters in the sport, turns 60 on Thursday, January 20. Here are a selection of his best quotes from down the years . . .
"I remember after Sam Thomas had jumped off Denman after winning I went over to John Hales and said, 'Thanks for your help' as his horse had been front-running, which meant we didn't have to the whole way. I think he nearly had a heart attack!"
A memorable conversation after Denman's Cheltenham Gold Cup success over stablemates Kauto Star and front-runner Neptune Collonges in 2008
"His second Hennessy really made me look him up and down in admiration. Under top weight, off a handicap mark of 174, that was some performance. I'll never forget that day and I'll never forget the Gold Cup. It was hyped up to be great and he won it soundly."
Remembering two of Denman's most high-profile victories
"Me being warned off was the biggest load of bollocks of all time and a complete ****ing liberty, but it was nothing compared to what happened afterwards."
On being banned for six months by the BHA for laying his own horse
"So there I was, sitting next to Lester Piggott at the dinner table and I couldn't believe what I was hearing. William Haggas is walking round serving the sausages and Lester 100 per cent guarantees me that Denman was better than Arkle. I say to him, 'How can you say that?' and he looks at me and says: 'I've seen Arkle and you haven't. I've seen them all and I'm telling you Denman was better than Arkle, faster than Arkle'."
On an interesting chat comparing Arkle and Denman with legendary jockey Lester Piggott
"The longest job I ever had lasted for two months and I don't know how I lasted two months. I couldn't stand the thought of being in the workplace when there was a good race meeting going on."
How Findlay's attentions turned to horseracing and betting
"He was tough, hardy and willing, wasn't the easiest to train and would bite your hand off in his box given half a chance. He came along at the right time and was one of our superstars during a golden era for Team Ditcheat."
Paying tribute to Denman following the star chaser's death in 2018
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