Posted by: jkirkby8712 | October 31, 2011

Saturday, 29th October 2011 – Victoria Derby Day in damp Melbourne!

It’s amazing, but on those nights when there would seem to be no reason why one can’t have a decent sleep, this writer wakes before 4am, and then his mind begins to go over a range of matters that need future attention, instead of closing down again for more sleep!!! Annoying practice, that mind of mine! Wandered down to the kitchen, made a cup of tea, and returned to bed, where a bit of reading took place until around 5am! Then thankfully, managed another couple of hours snoozing/dreaming, before arising and going into down for a bit of early Saturday morning shopping before the crowds and traffic built up. Amongst other things, I was looking for some decent carpet shampoo, being very disappointed with the particular carpet that is in this house ever since we moved in  – have tried various means of improving it’s look including bringing in the professionals on one occasion but still not happy with the outcome. I was even down on my hands and knees last night – a sight not to be seen – scrubbing away at annoying little marks, but decided there has to be a better way!! Meanwhile, I’ve been blamed for a ‘broken’ vacuum  cleaner,  and told that ‘we need a new one’, another expense to add to the ever growing list of items I’ve suddenly discovered we are currently in need of!!

Anyway, we have another Saturday, and another dull overcast and potentially wet one  –  why does the rain always wait until Saturday, or pour down Friday night and drench all of the cricket pitches!!  I feel for Adam, another’s day’s cricket spoilt potentially. I see that he has been selected in Sunbury’s senior team [B Grade] again for an away game against Riddell. If the weather fines up and it looks like they might get some play in, I might make the trip up the road for a bit of a look, though the forecast is not encouraging.

Meanwhile we can expect a possibly damp and stormy afternoon at the Flemington  races today  –  first day of the four day Melbourne Cup carnival, with today’s program including the Victoria Derby over 2,500 metres, and the MacKinnon Stakes over 2,000 metres. They are two of four Group One races on the program plus  two Group Two, and three Group Three races on a nine race program, a sensation al line-up of outstanding horses. I’m looking forward to this afternoon’s coverage!  Yesterday, I was speaking of Bart Cumming’s book. Bart has three horses running today, but none of them are certainties at adding to his enormous list of winners. In Race 3 [the Wakeful Stakes, Gp 2], he has ‘Gliding’, a chance, at odds of $10 this morning.  For the MacKinnon Stakes, he has ‘Precedence’, quoted at $31, not too hopeful, while in the Derby, Bart is running the $101 chance, ‘Rapidus’.  I shall keep a track on how those three horses perform today. Many of the horses competing today are entered in the Melbourne Cup next Tuesday, and perhaps for some of them, whether they run or not will depend on today’s performances. I think the final barrier draw and acceptances takes place this evening at the conclusion of today’s program.

My early tip for the Melbourne Cup [if it got a run] was Green Moon [2nd in the Caulfield Cup a fortnight ago]. It ran in Race 2 [The Lexus Stakes] and a win, as favourite, would get it a place in the Melbourne Cup. The horse led for most of the race setting a fast pace. But when challenged in the strait, well Green Moon had nothing to give, and finished 2nd last of 13 starters!! Need to rethink my Cup choices!!  After the first four races, the jockey/trainer combination of Kerrin McEvoy and Peter Snowden had scored wins in Races 1 and 4. [Galah and Sepoy], while Bart Cumming’s starter in Race 3, Gliding, came home  in 4th position. Next on the card was the $1million McKinnon Stakes, Bart’s horse is No. 6 Precedence. Won by a horse that ‘played up’ at the barriers, Glass Harmonium ridden by Damien Oliver  –  for that jockey, it was nine years ago today, that his brother in a riding accident. Oliver rode in the Melbourne Cup a few days later, and won the race [for his brother, as he said he did today].  A film currently being screened in Melbourne called ‘The Cup’ tells that story, and I really must get to see it before it disappears from the cinemas. As for Precedence, Bart’s horse finished 9th out of 12 starters but still managed to earn a start in the Melbourne Cup [one of two horses that Bart has in the Cup this year, the other being Illo, runner this year]. As for the Victoria Derby, this race saw the third win in a row in that race by a New Zealand horse – this time it was Sangster! It was a close finish with Induna, trained by the so far winning combination of Peter Snowden & jockey Kerrin McEvoy just missing out on a third win for the day. In fact that duo this afternoon collected 2 wins, 2 seconds and 1 third placing for the day. Meanwhile, jockey Damien Oliver had a good day on his brother’s anniversary with three winning rides, 2 seconds and a third. Incidentally, Bart Cumming’s horse in the Victoria Derby, Rapidus, finished in 14th position [of 16 starters], not a very successful afternoon for him!

The other important factor about this afternoon –  the weather stayed fine for the whole day, which was great for the fashions at the races, if that’s what turned you on, and it was also a good Omen for Adam’s cricket match up at Riddell.   A message later in the evening told me that his team had won the game, but no other details provided.

Following today’s races, the final field of 24 was drawn up for Tuesday’s Melbourne Cup, and as I shall be referring to that race in some detail on Tuesday, will leave the line up until that morning!

Bit of a quiet, almost lonely night at home this evening. Susie had disappeared late morning, and apparently didn’t get home until near midnight, although oddly I didn’t hear the car come in, so would not be aware that she was home until next morning.  I guess I was a little worried, or perhaps, more annoyed, that I had no idea where she was, and apart from her mobile phone which is never on when I ring, had no way of contacting her, should that be necessary. I was admittedly, tempted to ring/message just to see if it was likely she would return tonight, but decided against doing that, would surely not be appreciated!!  Shirley called around briefly during the afternoon – initially to borrow my lawnmower, but she had decided she was too tired to bother today, just dropped off some more material for her tax return which she had asked me to do. Although nothing had been said to me, I mentioned that a certificate I’d noticed in her room indicated she had successfully undertaken a program of working with young Indigenous people, which sounded promising – Shirley was aware she had been looking at something of that nature, but as I indicated, it was news to me. As was my response when asked where she was today –  I’ve no idea!!! [I think I would later notice a comment on Face Book that she had amongst other things, being at an engagement party, for friend Rachel].



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