That’s what yesterday ended up being; in punting terms. Picking a 100/1 winner (which was far in excess of the RP tissue price) means you can forgive yourself a lot of past near misses. A wiping of the slate clean. A starting of the flat season a bit up.
When Theredballoon went on in the last 2 furlongs at Huntingdon (having been the back marker for the previous 14) I was watching the in-running Betfair market. It had opened at 190 in the win market and almost from flag-fall contracted to 70. The lowest it seemed thereafter was 60. But then, in what seemed like the closing stages, it just tumbled. I could hardly believe my eyes when we entered the hallowed gubbing territory of 1.5s. Although I actually could. I had spent the race looking at the 70 thinking: how can this be? It’s got to run better than a 70 shot. Sometimes you have a strong feeling of great possibilities. I’ve had it on a train to Kempton for Akona Matata (sic) and I had it for Kicking King and War of Attrition. It doesn’t come round too often so I’m making sure to enjoy it. Of course (and if you read The Outliers you’ll know why) genius needs company, otherwise they are just another loser 😉 In this case the company was Stephen Foster and Old Stokie who are proper gents in an unkind world and for reasons best known to themselves had Nena’s Red Balloons on their minds last week.
I won’t be giving it all back mind. Just this bit.
And for a day that started so unpromisingly the best bit turned out to be: trees, about five of them. Last year I met a tree officer for the council at the Southend Film Festival. Yes, it rivals Cannes you know. Anyway, when I heard he was a tree lover and not just a bureaucrat I emailed him.
Please Sir, can I have some more?
You see we are an avenue, but most of the trees died leaving many years ago leaving us a bare street. Actually it reminds me of the Raggle Taggle’s cold open field. Anyway, yesterday, the council came along drilled holes and planted trees. On our avenue. Marvellous.