Sunday, January 31, 2010

Turfcall backs The Racing Post and David Ashforth’s plea therein (Friday January 29th 2010)

"Net result could be fruitful if racing chiefs take perfect chance".

David identifies:- “Three key ingredients needed for racing to maximise the
promotional benefits of the National Hunt Cheltenham Gold Cup clash between Kauto Star and Denman. (Cheltenham Festival four day meeting. (Tuesday March 16th through to Friday March 19th 2010)

First, a suitably staffed marketing organising; (Turfcall: Care needs to be taken to see that true proven top professional horsemen and horsewomen are not omitted.)

Second, a good marketing plan;

Third, adequate funding;

“All of these should have been in place several months ago. With 48 days to go none of them appear to be.

“Racing has always been lukewarm about central marketing, with the result that it faces this rare opportunity with no marketing department, no marketing director, no marketing budget. Say it ain’t so (although I’m not sure who to direct this plea to, Nic Coward? Rod Street? Paul Lee?)

“Is there a marketing organisation in charge of the Gold Cup project?
Is it Racing for Change? Is there a project manager? Is there a project leader? Is it Nic Attenborough, Racing for Change’s recently appointed PR director? If so, what powers does he have, what support staff and what budget? What sum has been allocated to execute the marketing plan, if there is one?

“Google Racing For Change and there, at the top of the list, is, “a group of like – minded individuals with one goal, to direct people of all ages interested in breaking into the motorsport industry”.

“Then there is, which keeps us informed about Tristan Muller’s efforts to raise money for charity. Where is Racing For Change’s website?

“Why, when I go to and search for Kauto Star, does it throw up all sorts of bits and pieces but nothing to let me know that coming up soon is a showdown with Denman? Why isn’t there a video on YouTube setting up the big day – Kauto Star versus Denman: Clash of the Titans – The Final Showdown?

“All the various interested parties are reported to be working closely together to plan a marketing campaign but, as Piers Pottinger an expert in the field, suggests, they are running late. Not too late to make an impact, but too late to maximise the impact. Planning, evidently, is at an advanced stage.

“We should have already moved beyond planning, into implementation, even though there is always the risk that the Cheltenham duel may fail to materialise.

“Pottinger has some lovely ideas, including launching a Kauto Star and a Denman cocktail, and so does Henry Chappell, of communications consultancy Pitch, with his emphasis on squeezing the most out of the build-up, using this unique opportunity , ‘to do something that hasn’t been done before’.

“ Kauto Star and Denman already have their own pages on Facebook, although virtually nothing seems to have appeared on Denman’s since Christmas. How can racing exploit this and other communication channels popular with young people?

“We know about some of the ideas and plans that Channel 4 Racing, Totesport and Cheltenham racecourse have in mind, with others due to be unveiled when the campaign is launched. Is there an official launch date? An event to get the campaign off with a bang?

“If it was to have been tomorrow, will it now be pushed back to February 13, when Denman is due to run at Newbury? Perhaps Kauto Star could be there, too, in the parade ring.

“We know that there will be scarves in the rivals’ colours (Cheltenham racecourse), a special touring bus (Tote) and the involvement of celebrities (Channel 4), and that Paul Nicholls, who trains both horses, can be relied upon to play his part, and more, in promoting the event. Nicholls has even signed up sports media relations consultancy JSC Sport to oversee his media and commercial activities.

“I would like to see racing try, to engage the many people who like horses and may be actively involved with them – riding school customers, for instance – but who have not tried racing. This also includes, I feel sure, many celebrities.

“I would like to see bobbleheads of Paul Nicholls and Ruby Walsh, and yes, of
Kauto Star and Denman, as part of merchandising initiatives.

“ We all have our ideas, and I hope the campaign produces many successful ones but, looking forward, if racing is to promote itself as a national sport and exploit these great horses and great occasions to the full, it needs to equip itself with those key ingredients – a proper marketing organisation, producing professional plans, properly funded”.



Friday, January 15, 2010



Haiti President Rene Preval speaking to reporters at Port-au-Prince airport, stated his deep sadness and concern over the fate of so many people buried alive under the rubble of smashed buildings etc, unable to get out.

World Aid too slow to act. British aid blocked by negative bureaucracy, how many more times are the British people to be left to face letting other countries down in their hour of need?


Tuesday, January 12, 2010



THE MALFUNCTION OF FAULTY STALL (5) CAUSED THIS WHOLE PRADICAMENT, BADLY EFFECTING VANATINA partnered by LUKE MORRIS in Race 6 the 3:25 over 7f the Bet In Play Now! Handicap (Class 6) Winner £2,047.20

Stewards at Kempton this day stated to be: J.Wallinger, A.White, D.Watt. Stipendiares C.R Vickers, A.D McMcGlone.
Starters: M.Smith, R.Supple

As clearly shown on Channel 4 Racing that afternoon stall 5 opened before any of the other 9 stalls opened, a false start. Due to the consequences of this LUKE MORRIS had a nasty fall immediately after unlucky VANATINA left stall 5 causing her to gallop riderless/ loose, down the course for quite some time, before she was eventually caught, and withdrawn. It is hoped that both VANATINA and LUKE MORRIS got home that day without any serious damage to life or limb.

What do the owners Black Diamond Racing think about this?
What does the British licensed trainer W.M Bradbourne think about this?
What does the team working with W.M Brisbourne every day think about this?
Weeks and weeks of work destroyed by one faulty starting stall.
Who checks these stalls out before racing takes place?
Who’s responsibility is it to ensure that all equipment used on the racecourse is sound and working properly?

Surely all the parties involved as listed above to include VANATINA and LUKE MORRIS should receive considerable compensation from both the racecourse authorities and the starting stall racing services (RaceTech) for failing to ensure that all the racecourse equipment is safe to use. If a starting stall is found to be faulty this must not on any account be used. Who is responsible to check these stalls out before racing takes place?

John McCririck spoke up at the time with true concerns about VANATINA and LUKE MORRIS’S welfare, with further concern regarding the punters who had backed VANATINA. In cases as this, all punters who had backed VANATINA should receive their stake money back.

Further more, any unsporting dangerous incidences occurring during the running of any, and all races, both on the Flat and National Hunt, punters need to know if their horse is interfered with, put out of the race, that they most certainly will always get their stake money back.

Channel 4 “The Morning Line Live” on Saturday November 7th 2009 8am to 9am.
Tanya Stevenson asked all tuned in for emails stating their opinion regarding Punters rights re: stalls incident in particular.

Turfcall responded sending an email in timed at 8:30am that morning as follows:

STARTS “Tanya, stalls incident shown on the Morning Line this morning.
Yes all punters clobbered by all and any misfortune happening in the starting stalls whosoever's fault it is, should get their stake money back.

A few years back now the two year old colt Threat trained by John Gosden having his debut run at Goodwood and partnered by Frankie Dettori was trapped in a
faulty starting stall which failed to open at all. Frankie was blamed and received a hefty fine !!!!!!! What sort of Justice was that? A highly dangerous experience for both Threat & Frankie.

J. Margaret Clarke
For and on behalf of Turfcall UK”



Friday, January 08, 2010



Why do we need another election this year at all? When the whole world is suffering a recession?

Surely Britain cannot afford a General Election at this time?

Surely Britain cannot afford the time either that is needed to put the ancient wheels of a General Election in motion that such an ancient election procedure demands?

Is this also an area/political structure long past it’s sell by date upsides the School Curriculum inadequacies?

How can the British people be expected to vote with any confidence following the expenses scandal?

How can the present Old Hat British Political Structure actually be sound?

How can the British people ever accept that the truth is to be denied them?

How can the British people ever accept that their money is being used by the privileged to suit only the privileged, David Cameron in particular?


Is the present school curriculum denying the young ones a fair start in life?

Is the present school curriculum preparing the young ones properly for life in the real world?

Or is this present current school curriculum well beyond it’s sell by date?

Education needs to embrace careers of all sorts from the actual school environment.
But this is just not happening. Why is this?

It is most definitely not happening within the Multi Billion Pound British Horseracing Industry to date. Looks like this is the case right across the board.





£3,125 in prizes and the opportunity to be published

The Wills Young Writers’ Awards, to be launched tomorrow, have been hailed as ‘a terrific opportunity to get your name in print and win extremely handsome pocket money’ by Brough Scott, Chairman of the judges for the eighth successive year.

The annual awards, started in 1993 in memory of journalist and amateur jockey Martin Wills, are for creative writing around a horseracing theme. The judges have to pick from three categories: under 26, under 19 and under 15, each of which offers substantial prizes, the main one being £1,250.

Previous winners have gone on to write for the national and racing press, news agencies and broadcast media.

This year’s seven judges include three first timers, all of them successful journalists: Charlie Brooks, Countryside Editor of The Daily Telegraph and former trainer; Mark Costello, Deputy Editor of The Irish Field, Ireland’s leading racing and breeding weekly newspaper; and Brian Viner, a senior features writer and columnist for The Independent, who is also a best-selling author. Viner, whose latest book ‘Nice to See It, To See It, Nice: The 1970s in Front of the Telly’, which is now out in paperback, says ‘It is great to be part of something which gives young people opportunities. This is a tremendous way to get yourself noticed and I advise you to get your entries in early.’

The awards are for creative writing (fact or fiction) on, or with a background in, any aspect of horseracing by young people resident in the UK or the Republic of Ireland. Particular importance will be attached by the judges to originality, imagination, conviction, entertainment, construction and use of language, as well as obvious enthusiasm for both writing and the subject matter. Quality of writing is key; a detailed knowledge of horseracing is unnecessary.

Those aged under 26/19/15 on January 1, 2010, are invited to submit a single article by February 28, 2010, via the “Entry Requirements” section of the Awards’ website Employees of the national and racing press and previous winners in their category are ineligible. Entries are judged anonymously.

The maximum word counts are 1,200 (under 26s/19s) or 800 (under 15s).

The article must not be published prior to the announcement of the winners of the awards. No correspondence will be entered into and the judges’ decision is final. Schools should please not submit more than three entries per class.

The six prizes, for the winner and runner-up in each category, are £1,250/£750 (under 26s), £500/£250 (under 19s) and £250/£125 (under 15s). In addition, the winners will be published in the Racing Post and The Irish Field. The under 26 winner will also have the opportunity of work experience at the London offices of the Racing Post.

The awards will be announced and presented at the Craven Meeting at Newmarket on Wednesday, April 14, 2010, when all six prize winners will be given an expenses paid day’s racing, including a reception in a private luncheon room generously made available by the Racecourse. There will also be a tour of two leading stables.

This year’s judges are: Brough Scott (Chairman), three-time Sports Feature Writer of the Year and for many years simultaneously a sports writer on a national newspaper, Editorial Director of the Racing Post and chief presenter of Channel 4 Racing; Marcus Armytage, racing writer at The Daily Telegraph and Grand National winning jockey; Charlie Brooks; Mark Costello; Sean Magee, a versatile racing author and journalist; Brian Viner; and Catherine Wills, DPhil Art Historian sister of Martin Wills and a member of the Jockey Club. Brough Scott, Marcus Armytage and Catherine Wills are additionally trustees of the promoter of the awards, the Martin Wills Memorial Trust, a UK registered charity.

Information on the awards is available on Enquiries to Charles Ponsonby on 020-7367 8851 (tel) / 020-7367 8899 (fax) / (e-mail) or, in Ireland, Andrew Kavanagh on 059-97 73105 (tel) / 059-97 73420 (fax) / (email).

1 Frederick's Place
Tel: +44 (0)20 7367 8888
: +44 (0)20 7367 8899

Distributed by Racenews