SUN RACING is on a mission.
We want to give a voice and shine a torch on the people that really matter in horse racing – YOU.
It means we care about the big grins, not the long faces. From Ascot to York, we’ll be there to capture one of life’s great joys – a day at the races – for our new series: Racing.
This week, GEORGE BOULTON was at Kempton Park.
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“I’m doing something special this year. I turned 60 in February, and there’s 60 race courses in the UK – so I’m going to every single one.”
Graham, 60, was one of the people we spoke to at Kempton as part of our Racing series.
His full story, and more, is over on our Instagram – follow us to stay in touch ahead of our second episode next month, and let us know why you love racing.
MEDICS may have been able to contain Equine Flu.
But on this evidence there’s something even more powerful that cannot be cured… the Racing Bug.
I was at Kempton Park this Saturday on a mission to capture the joy and beauty of one of Britain’s oldest tracks which opened back in 1878.
Just a few weeks ago, racing was gripped by the flu crises.
But that seemed like a distant memory as thousands of people buzzed around the course on this sunny Saturday in February.
Here, punters funnel back towards the winners’ enclosure and food court after the first day of the race, the Handicap Hurdle. They were in high spirits, with favourite Erick Le Rouge coming in at 7/2.
Anybody who has been to this famous course will know that walk – with the red bricks of the enclosure to one side and the space-ship girders of the Grandstand to another.
It had been an early start in South West London. This lady, buying her programme in the reflection of a vacant ticket booth, was one of the first on the course at 11.30am.
This was my first trip to Kempton and I could sense the atmosphere growing ahead of the first race as thousands of people flooded through the turnstiles.
Naturally everyone was in good spirits as the sun was shining and people had an opportunity to dress up, let their hair down and have fun.
There was a number of racegoers buying brand new hats as they hadn’t prepared for the surprising February sunshine.
The anticipation peaked when people got their first sightings of the horses in the parade ring before the jockeys saddled up for the opening race of the day.
One couple I spoke to summed it up: “Your adrenaline really gets going doesn’t it, when you’ve bet on a race.”
Well there was adrenaline by the bucket load here, with the man in the grey to the right of the picture (below) cheering home Walt in the Handicap Chase at 14/1.
Another told me: “When you do win, it’s a payday and when you don’t win you try again next time.”
And I was lucky enough to capture our grey-jumper warrior cleaning out the bookies moments later when he went to claim his winnings.
Kempton is a family affair, and I love this pic. These guys have got the bug early.
Maybe they’ll turn out like Graham, 60, who I met earlier in the day. Graham is celebrating his birthday by going to all 60 courses in the UK.
Chances are, we’ll be seeing quite a bit of him in this series!
You can’t win them all, can you? I love the sight of these betting slips below – we’ll never know how close somebody came to the big win.
We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again: It’s the people that make racing.
Just take this couple, hand in hand, below.
I’ll be back in the coming weeks and months as I tour the courses of the UK.
There’ll be more bags more pictures and articles – plus near-live Stories of the day over on our Instagram.
That is, unless this guy in the picture below beats me to it!
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