Posted by: jkirkby8712 | November 2, 2010

Melbourne Cup Day 2010

As mentioned yesterday, a public holiday in Melbourne today – for the running of the 150th Melbourne Cup.  But no sleep -in for your writer –  up at the radio station by 7.15, for what is now the 3rd year in a row – Bill’s Melbourne Cup Preview program!! Why do I do this?  Well, no-one else has shown any initiative to put on a special program for the event, and while I’m no longer a part of the regular sporting panel on the station [Saturday morning’s] I think that a special service of this nature is warranted for our listeners [which is why I generally come in at other times like Christmas morning, when no-one else is interested, or otherwise engaged [I guess it helps when you no longer have young children to attend to at those times!].

Anyway, for such 75 minutes [with another regular program scheduled for 8.30] we talked about today’s 10 race program at Flemington, looked at each of the races, but gave major time and preference to the Cup field of 24 horses. I’m no expert on the individual attributes of every horse running around, so I do depend to some degree on the more professional opinions of the experts – doesn’t everyone! But together with a couple of other station personalities who rang in with their specific selections, we try and give the listeners just another viewpoint or two on which horses we think might be up near the front at the end of the two miles [or 3,200 metres] of the race!!

Anyway, 24 horses in, maybe one scratching of one of the overseas horses – a slight injury was been tested as I write – and I have come up with my predicted top 6 placings – the outstanding favourite [and if he wins, probably the most popular horse in the country] is No. 3: So You Think.  Only doubt – has won everything, but never raced over 3,200!

My top six –  1st: 22: Linton;  2nd: 3: So You Think [trained by the octerian, Bart Cummings, going for his 13th Melbourne Cup win]; 3rd: 1: Shocking [last year’s winner]; 4th: 5: Illustrious Blue;  5th: 12: Harris Tweed; and 6th: 11: Descarado [Caulfield Cup Winner of two weeks ago, and trained by the effervescent Gai Waterhouse]. I shall return later with the outcome!!

I do love watching the horses, but it is always distressing to see one of them fall during a race, as just occurred in Race 3. On this occasion, the horse got up and trotted away, and seems to be okay. Not so lucky the jockey, who apart from now losing his ride in the Melbourne Cup, is on his way to hospital. Was on the track for a long while, conscious, but presumably in a bit of pain, never got up at any stage, and was placed on a stretcher for transfer to an ambulance. One of the less pleasant aspects of horse racing. Blake Shinn was the jockey on Bart Cumming’s second Cup entry ‘Precedence’ – there are still plenty of good jockey’s avalable to take his place, a decision Cummings has to make very soon, as the horse is apparently sometimes difficult to ride.

Meanwhile the day remains coolish, a few showerd before at Flemington, though I’ve not noticed any rain out here in Sunbury. It was reported yesterday that this October past, was the wettest October in Melbourne for around 30 years. Probably not a record that most Victorians would be unhappy about after a decade of drought.

Well, as far as my ‘tips’ were concerned, I didn’t do very well. Won nothing, although of my predicted Top 6 first placings, two of the horses I named made in into the first six, but that’s about all I can say!! As for my daughter  – she has only had two bets on the horses in her life. Last year, she selected 1st and 2nd, and collected over $3,000!!  She has not looked at a horse race or betting slip since, until today, when she had another bet. It’s just not fair  –  you guessed it, Susie picked 1st and 2nd again, and this time, collected a mere $520!!! What am ‘I’ doing wrong?  Good luck to her of course, but I wish some of that luck would rub off on me!

Incidentally the results of the Melbourne Cup for 2010 were: 1st:  Americain.  2nd: Maluckyday.  3rd:  So You Think.  4th: Zipping.  5th: Harris Tweed. 6th: Holberg. And the other four horses I had in my top 6  –  Linton [finished 21st], Shocking [18th], Illustrious Blue [9th] and Descarado [didn’t finish]………………….what a successful afternoon for Bill!!

Went back to the radio station tonight, and didn’t mention horse racing!!!  My Tuesday night program of show & Broadway music, tonight, concentrated on the music and songs of Andrew Lloyd Webber, and also had a 30 minute feature on the singer, Josh Groban. I went to one of his concerts [probably the only one he gave] in Melbourne about three years ago, and was totally knocked out by his peformances. Tonight I played seven songs from the 2nd album he released – back in November, 2003 – called ‘Closer’. Groban apparently believed that this album was a better reflection of him and that his audience would be able to get a better idea of him personally by listening to it. He said “What most people know about me, they know through my music. This time, I’ve tried to open that door as wide as possible. These songs are a giant step closer to who I really am and what my music is all about. Hence the title”. There are some beautiful songs on the album, which if you listen closely to the lyrics, display intense passion and feeling, as though the words Josh Groban is singing, come directly from the heart – song titles such as My Confession, When You Say You Love Me, Never Let Go, She’s Out Of My Life, and Remember When It Rained, for example, almost depict what is to follow through the title alone. On this album, he also sings his version of ‘You Raise Me Up’, and while it’s not the original version, I much prefer to here Groban sing it.

I guess we can blame the public holiday, and the fact that us radio presenters are all volunteers, but sometimes I think the responsibilities that come with undertaking such a role are taken very lightly by some of my fellow broadcasters. With that in mind, it annoyed me a little tonight, that the presenters who were meant to be on air before and after myself, did not turn up. In fact, I had to use a bit of restraint, when the chap who was to follow me, rang me up to say he was not coming in, and then casually suggested that not doing so didn’t really matter, it was just a bit of fun anyway!!!  That kind of slack attitude really ‘gets up my nose’, and I think that without actually saying so, I probably made that point this evening!




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