The Border Post | Horse Racing Blog | Cartmel | Kelso Racecourse

Posts by Jonathan

The Weekly Blog

Get in the Spirit

Good things come to those who wait and the anticipation of good things is the oil that lubricates horseracing’s engine – whether it’s the Frankel foal in the paddock, the novice hurdler that’s destined for Grand National glory or the antepost betting slip for next year’s Cheltenham Gold Cup.

The optimism of racing enthusiasts is what sets them apart from the rest of society. Because, to a racing person, there is as little as no difference between living in hope and basking in the knowledge of a sure-thing. We’re confident; we’re believers; we have a faith that is not easily shaken by failure…

Continue reading
The Weekly Blog

Money Laundering

The Royal Mint made 213 million twenty-pence pieces in 2016. But when the old one-pound coin was being phased out, the nation went in search of forgotten piggy banks and found so much small change that the Royal Mint didn’t need to make any twenty-pence coins at all in 2017. Not one – look in your pocket, you won’t find any.

Punters are even worse at mislaying their small change. Many of us are so underwhelmed when our ten-pence each-way super-yankee registers just two placed horses (instead of the five winners that we were confidently expecting) that we don’t bother to pick up the resultant winnings of 42p.

Continue reading
The Weekly Blog

Reasons to be Cheerful (Part 3)

According to Gallup’s Global Emotions report, we’ve never been happier than we were last year. We’ve also never been so tense, angry of fretful – which just goes to show that the majority of people are never happy unless they have something to moan about.

The British were marginally happier than average, scoring 75 out of 100 in the ‘happiness index’ compared to a global score of 71. The French, always a step behind the British, scored only 73 in a ranking system which appears to show that nations with a significant horseracing industry are at an advantage. The Greeks were the least happy of all – probably because they don’t have enough racing.

Continue reading
The Weekly Blog

Rock Solid

The Stone Age didn’t come to an end because we ran out of rocks.

But by the same token, we didn’t stop using rocks just because the Stone Age came to an end. We might have stopped throwing pointy bits of flint at each other, but we continued to use stone for more constructive purposes – like the new parade ring viewing terraces at Kelso, fashioned out of sandstone from the nearby quarry at Swinton.

Continue reading
The Weekly Blog

Easter Pilgrims

Just as Parisians will have looked across the night sky on Monday evening and hoped that the bright light in the distance wasn’t really the blazing roof of Notre-Dame, so it is that sometimes we catch a glimpse of a light at the end of the tunnel and hope that it isn’t the headlights of an oncoming train.

Continue reading
The Weekly Blog

Why the Long Face?

I don’t think Laleh Shahravesh was being complimentary when she responded to a photograph of her ex-husband and his new wife by posting, “You left me for this horse?”

I doubt she was making a comment about his bride’s glossy mane, sleek body or elegant poise. More likely that she was trying to say that his new partner had a big nose, swivelling ears and eyes positioned on the sides of her head.

Continue reading
The Weekly Blog

The National Shortlist

I know I say it every year, but backing the winner of the Grand National is so easy. Here’s how you compile your shortlist.

Horses with ‘Red’ in their name have a good record – like Red Alligator, Red Rum and Red Marauder. That’s a good sign for Captain Redbeard and maybe even Vieux Lion Rouge…

Continue reading
The Weekly Blog

Risk Reducing Technology

When I heard that all vehicles sold in Europe from 2022 onwards are set to have speed-limiting technology, my first thought was that I needed to buy a new car by 2021.

My second thought was that my current vehicle, a Landrover Defender, already has speed limiting technology. It’s called the ‘engine’ and it ensures that speed-limits can only be broken in built-up areas; even then, only if the roads are straight and slightly downhill.

Continue reading
The Weekly Blog

We’ve Seen the Light

They say that necessity is the mother of invention. Which is why, when the ring-pull came off my tin of dog-food, I decided to invent a new can-opener.

Shaped a bit like a log-splitting axe and about the same size as a log-splitting axe, my new can-opener works along similar lines to a log-splitting axe. So when I hit the top of the tin, it opened quite easily…

Continue reading
The Weekly Blog

Yes Ambassador!

It’s been a week of intense debate. Deadlines have loomed, decisions have been made – some small victories and quite a few defeats. Two shuffles forward, two shuffles back. Now we’ve got to the end of the week and it’s STILL make-your-mind-up time.

What do we want? How much consideration do we need to give to the Irish?

I refer, of course, not to Brexit – but to the Cheltenham Festival…

Continue reading