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“The Big Fight”

I saw this collage a few months back and it has stayed with me. The artist was a German, forced into exile by the Nazis before the Second World War. He made his home latterly in England and died in Ambleside in the Lake District.

I would like to see more of his work.

Kurt Schwitters 1947


Today’s Irish Derby has the potential to be hugely dull, especially happening as it does at 5.10. I am sure it’s not that late normally. Have the Irish moved it back on account of a certain football match? Surely not. Anyway that will work well enough if we are not in extra time by then.

The potential dullness is due to 5 of the 11 runners being from Ballydoyle and 5 of the 11 being by the Ballydoyle pre-potent sire Galileo. I always used to sit up and take notice of a Galileo, but the ubiquity of his offspring is a negative for me in this race. So, looking for a better story, I would like to back the outsider Puncher Clynch who is by Azamour and the more fancied and supplemented Monterosso for Dubawi.

As for the football, our oldest ever team faces Germany’s youngest ever. Youth over experience didn’t stop Ghana yesterday, but Germany have managed to chuck in the odd pants performance of their own. One suspects neither team are going to go down that road today: it’s going to be nail-biting.


And for those of you who notice such things, I am disgusted by the text’s close hugging of the image and have tried many formatting changes to fix it.  But I can’t and I am off for a coffee.

The Irish Derby – why we can’t take it too seriously…

1) Because Sea the Stars probably won’t run on account of rain-softened ground

2) Because the Master of Ballydoyle runs 7 (over half-the field)

3) Because the same Master has attributable comments along the lines of the Irish Derby “being a true indicator of the best 3yo…”

4) Because 5 of the 13 declared have opposed each other over the trip previously at Epsom so is it not such a head-scratcher as the English one.

5) It is not part of the Triple Crown.

6) I find I don’t care as much.

Gripes aside, I expect Fame or Glory will win, with Masterofthehorse thereabouts (that is all if Sea the Stars is not running – but I would bet on that now).  However, it will be more fun to take an each-way price about Byzantine who is a huge price, and probably nowhere near good enough, with Aidan O’Brien’s son Joseph on board (and only because I can) and The Bull Hayes who is also by Sadlers Wells and not likely quite up to par either (except good and battle hardened) for NH trainer Jessica Harrington.  We like Mrs Harrington – she trained the marvellous Champion Chase hero Moscow Flyer and has herself spent hard times after breaking her neck in a riding accident in Africa.  It would be most wonderful if she could overturn the Ballydoyle/Coolmore apple cart! 

Anyhow, the Sea the Stars and stamina conundrum is not necessarily answered – don’t forget that you are running downhill from Tattenham Corner and there’s none of that at the Curragh.  I think John Oxx will make the right choice and demonstrate his perfect pedigree for the 10f at the Eclipse 🙂

Sorry, I said I can’t take it all too seriously.  Far better bets to be had I expect this weekend and probably on the tennis…

Looking for an upset amongst les pommes

Looking for an upset amongst les pommes