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Monday, 31 December 2007

Nag3 2007 Review: We've Come A Long Long Way...

Hard to believe, dear reader, that Nag3 has only been in existence since February 2007. However, in those little over ten months, this text box into which I scribble my thoughts, aspirations, exasperations, has become very important to me.

It acts as diary, catharsis and, as many of you know, marketing tool. It has become a key part of my weekly routine to 'blog' to you, my trusty band of occasional perusers, to the point where I probably enjoy jotting my bluster more than you enjoy reading it.

So, before I proceed, I'd like to record my heartfelt thanks for your support this year, and I truly hope that in the time you've been a spectator on this page, you've found one or two titbits of value, either in the racing stuff or some other peripheral tale that I may have expounded herein.

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2007 Review

The racing year has two crescendo's, two seasons: the jumps and the flat, and Nag3 has been there for much of both this year.

February

It all started with something of a bang, on February 23rd this year, with a post entitled 'Grand National Thoughts'.

Regular readers will know that I look forward to the National like no other race, principally because my record in finding the winner in recent years has been exceptional (though I say so myself).

In that post, I reduced the 119 entries down to just 12. That 'dirty dozen' included 33/1 winner Silver Birch, who could have been backed at 100 on betfair at the time (and indeed was, by yours truly).

March

All about the Cheltenham Festival of course, and my bet of the meeting and one of my two bets of the year, was sunk when Well Chief capsized before the race was two fences old.

Man of the Meeting for me was Ferdy Murphy, who got me and many others out of jail with a couple of fat (FAT!) priced winners. L'Antartique at 20's and Joe's Edge at 50's (both available at double those odds on the exchange) saw Murphy continue his impressive form with chasers at the festival. Watch out for him in 2008!

April

The end of the jumps season proper, and the month of the Grand National, jewel in the crown of the Aintree Festival.

Silver Birch won me a couple of grand in the big race, and won a few others some nice dough too. He was heavily touted on these pages.

April also saw the start of the Flat season, and my alternative ten to follow. I presented ten nags who would not win big prizes but who might pay their way through the season.

The tale of the tape on those fellows at season end was thus:

43 starts
9 wins
8.5 points profit
21% strike rate
20% ROI at SP

May

No more jumping action to concern us, and the Flat season started to pick up with the first of the Classics.

2nd May saw my personal favourite (or should I say favour-wit) post, as I previewed the 2000 Guineas in the style of Elmer Fudd.

I didn't find the winner of the race (who did?!), but I tipped all to lay the life out of Teofilo, and suggested he'd probably run his last race. Alas, both projections proved spot on. It will be interesting to see how his progeny perform in a couple of years time.

May also saw the first of a number of product reviews, with the products actually being trialled on the blog in real time.

Aside from TrainerTrackStats (naturally), the first review is also my favourite product of those I've reviewed. It's called Racing Secrets [Exposed], and is the best laying system product available, in my opinion. You can read the review and see its performance here.

June

Derby and Oaks time, and Royal Ascot. My tribute to 'Sir' Henry Cecil (still not knighted, a travesty). He won the Oaks, his first Group 1 for a number of seasons, though with the 'wrong' filly. (The favourite is still running...)

In the Derby, Authorized won like a very good horse. As is the case with Derby winners, he then won only one of his subsequent three starts. The race that is the Classic Blue Riband seems to finish off an alarming number of top class animals and is, in my opinion at least, an utter anachronism.

I believe it should be re-defined as a contest run in high Summer at a less tumultuous track, to truly demonstrate the best three year old at a time when the colts have had a chance to properly mature, and when all animals have an equal chance on a literal level playing field.

Royal Ascot was probably brilliant. I say 'probably', because I was off sailing round the Croatian coast at the time, and contrived to miss the meeting for the second year running. I vow to be in UK in late June 2008, and to offer my thoughts to you, my dear reader, and my cash to betfair (which, by the wonders of person to person betting, may also be to you, my dear reader!).

July

Mid-summer and Flat racing galore. Also, an impromptu trip to Las Vegas, and the World Series of Poker. And, of course, le Tour de France.

My favourite sporting event of the year, and another of my personal favourite posts, was the preview for the 2007 Tour de France. In the end, I pretty much ruled them all out, but managed to make some money along the way, dodging the dirty doping cheats.

Incidentally, and to add a touch of currency to this retrospectacle (sic, with thanks to Thomas Dolby), you may have noted with sadness that Phil O'Donnell passed away whilst playing football for Motherwell last weekend.

He is the latest of a number of footballers who have suffered heart failure while playing (Marc-Vivien Foe perhaps the most high profile).

Now, whilst I need to be careful what I say here, I strongly believe that more and more footballers are using steroids and, more worryingly, engaging in the same blood doping activities that have claimed the lives of many, many (very) young cyclists.

Of course I cannot prove a link, but if you search for Operacion Puerto (or view the Wikipedia link), you will see what I am getting at.

In the big business of sport, this is a most worrying development, which has been conveniently swept under the carpet. It would not surprise me one jot to see this become the biggest story in sport in 2008...

On a lighter note, joke of the month was,

A young jockey and his stable lass girlfriend make the decision to get married. Everything is planned and the couple intend to honeymoon in Italy for a week. The marriage goes without a hitch and the couple set off on their honeymoon. While checking in the lady behind the desk asks 'We have two suites available for you, would you like the bridal?' 'No thanks says the jockey I'll just hold her ears till she gets the hang of it!'

Oh dear....

I also introduced some US betting concepts which may be new to UK punters, and which are very interesting at least, and the foundation for profitable punting at best...

August

An august end to the summer, indeed, dear reader, and a look forwards to both the start of the footy season (with some predictions), and the beginning of TTS 07/8.

My Premier League top scorer selections have been, let's face it, woeful. Darren Bent remains a brilliant striker but, like many of his team mates, he is suffering a serious crisis of confidence and is also now fourth choice in the dreaded squad rotation policy.

Eduardo is now scoring goals, and is proving what a natural finisher he is, but he's only getting games because the first choice Robin van Persie is injured. He has only two in the League though, and will not trouble the judge this season for sure.

My division accumulator still has a prayer, though perhaps little more:

Premier Man Utd (11/8)
Championship Watford (9/1), Sheffield United (9/1)
League One Nottingham Forest (4/1), Luton (16/1)
League Two Peterborough (7/2), Darlington (14/1)

(8 x £5 lodged at the start of the season)

September

The start of the TrainerTrackStats season, and a good start to boot. September was also the month that saw Nag3 become more of a travelogue than a blog.

TTS returned around ten points profit on the month (using betfair, as ever), and about the same again on the place parts.

Personally, I had a trip to Thailand as the highlight. My first venture to Asia was more eye popping than eye opening, and I have to concede to not having enjoyed all that I witnessed there.

October

Another fine month for TTS, and another fine month for my travelogue / blog. This time I managed to get to the Breeders' Cup, which - alas for me - saw my second 'bet of the year' washed away on the false turf of Monmouth Park.

Dylan Thomas, racing on the anniversary of the acclaimed Welsh author's birthday, was never in the race, and my brains were done in grand fashion.

TTS place punters collected a lovely £457 for £20 stakes, and win punters said 'ta very much' to a more modest £203 for the same units.

November

Last month provided yet more gallivanting for your humble scribe, with Paris, Piraeus and Heligenhaus (near Dusseldorf) on the itinery this time.

Alas, it was also a month when the wheels fell off the TTS wagon in unholy manner. A brutal -50 points for the win bets, and -15 points for the place elements undid all of the preceding good work.

Fear not, though, for faith was to be rewarded...

December

And so to December. The end of the year is a time for reflection, for lessons to be considered and for all men (and women) to reaffirm their commitments in life.

An excellent month for TTS has just finished, with the pain of November now a fading memory, and monthly P/L showing +£642 on the place and +£956 for the win (a lovely total of £1,598 for £20 e/w stakes).

Thus, the half time statement is:

Winners 21.38%
Placed in 1st 3 53.56%
Win Profit £320 to £20
Place Profit £998 to £20
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Total Profit £1,318 to £20

To 2008, and look out for a special 'mid season sale' offer in your inbox very soon.

Between now and then though, all that remains for me is to thank you again most sincerely for both your patronage and your time in reading this page.

If you've purchased my products (or others recommended on this page), I hope you've found the honesty around them refreshing, and the product rewarding.

If you've merely read my regular ramblings, I trust that this has brought a smile and the odd guffaw to your features, and that you will continue to enjoy the verbiage here posted.

May I take this opportunity to wish you and those around you a lucrative and, much more importantly, a healthy and happy New Year.

Until next year...

Matt

 

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Friday, 28 December 2007

29th December Selections

Usual drill, dear reader, with any of the below becoming qualifiers, as long as their odds are 14/1 or shorter:

Bangor
1.10 Vitray

Musselburgh
12.15 Laborec
1.20 Grand Art
1.50 Jack The Blaster
2.20 Knight Valliant
2.55 Some Touch
3.25 Masafi

Newbury
12.30 Oceanos Des Obeaux
Big Buck's
1.00 Celestial Halo
1.35 Dear Villez
2.05 Penn Da Benn
Hell's Bay
2.40 Elusive Dream

LAying System lay, perversely, and subject to being 3/1 or shorter, is:

Musselburgh
12.15 Laborec

Last day here for me today, so last day of selections on the blog. Subscribers will receive emails as usual from tomorrow.

Best Regards,
Matt
3.10 Yaboya

 

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Thursday, 27 December 2007

28th December Selections

Tomorrow's TTS runners, dear reader, so long as they are sent off 14/1 or shorter:

Catterick
1.20 Young Smokey
1.50 My Bobby
3.25 Izzykeen

Laying System selections, if 3/1 or shorter:

Leicester
2.00 Park Drive

Best,

Matt

 

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Wednesday, 26 December 2007

27th December Selections

Tomorrow's selections, dear reader, subject to being 14/1 or shorter...

Chepstow
12.20 Mark The Book
Supreme Huntress
12.55 Supreme Prince
Bold Fire
2.05 Halcon Genelardais
Dream Alliance
Gungadu
Cornish Sett
Geeveem
L'Aventure
2.40 Franchoek
3.15 Spare Cash
3.50 Earth Dream


Kempton
12.40 Distiller
1.50 De Blanc
2.55 Kock De La Vesvre

Wetherby
12.20 Herbie
Striking Article
12.50 Wee Bertie
3.35 Scriptwriter

No Laying System selections tomorrow.

Matt
3.30 French Opera
Lester Leaps In

 

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Tuesday, 25 December 2007

Boxing Day Selections

Dear Reader,

Merry Christmas from your truly. I hope Santa brought you all you hankered for. If not, here are tomorrow's TrainerTrackStats runners, subject to being 14/1 or shorter (there are a lot of meetings and a lot of potential qualifiers):

Huntingdon
2.00 Swift Sailor
2.40 Thievery
3.10 Gold Reef
3.40 Charmaine Wood

Kempton
12.45 Polyfast
1.55 Punjabi
3.45 Princelet
Ship's Hill

Sedgefield
12.00 General Ledger
Master Builder
12.35 Senora Snoopy
1.05 Top Cloud
1.35 Moyne Pleasure
2.10 Tipp Mid West
2.45 Stormy Beech


Towcester
12.20 Opare
12.50 Freddie The Third
1.25 Rimsky
Posh Dude

Wetherby
1.00 Balyan
2.05 Albany
3.35 Panthera Leo

Wincanton
2.15 Roofing Spirit

Tomorrow's Laying System lays, subject to being 3/1 or shorter, are as follows:

Wincanton
3.50 Hills Of Home

Towcester
12.50 The Package
2.55 Latanier

Kempton
1.55 Harchibald

Huntingdon
3.40 Charmaine Wood

Lay of the Day seems to be Harchibald in the big hurdle race at Kempton. The horse is classy enough, but his resolution is open to plenty of questions. At odds on, I'd definitely be a layer not a player.

Hope the hangover is not too bad, and the relatives have been at least bearable!

Matt

 

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Sunday, 23 December 2007

Nothing Til Boxing Day: Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas, dear reader, and I hope some of you backed Lough Derg yesterday at 14/1 (a good bit bigger on the exchange).

There is no racing now until Boxing Day, and I'll post the runners on Christmas Day.

I'm now off to throw myself down an Alp!

A bientot, as they say round here...

Matt

 

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Friday, 21 December 2007

Tomorrow's Runners (Saturday 22nd December)

Dear reader,

Here are tomorrow’s Laying System lays, subject to being 3/1 or shorter:

Lingfield
3.10 Greek Easter

Here are tomorrow’s TTS qualifiers, subject to being 14/1 or shorter:

Ascot
1.05 Madison Du Berlais
1.40 Lough Derg
2.50 Prince De Bersy

Haydock
12.20 Rebel Rhythm
12.55 Haditovski
Flake
2.05 Sharp Belline

Newcastle
12.10 Walamo
Weather Front
1.50 Final Veto


Best Regards
Matt

 

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Friday Fun with the Family Guy, And Some More Free Stuff...

Me again, dear reader, and time is against me alas. I have an hour to write this, pack and get ready for my annual pilgrimage to a vertiginous ice covered natural disaster in waiting. Yes, that's right, tomorrow I will be skiing... Woohoo!

Now you may or may not have noted the degree of cynicism that often emanates from the physiognomy of yours truly, but - believe me - few things excite me like my trip to the cold zone each year.

Let me think... There's the day before Cheltenham (pant wettingly exciting), the day the declarations come out for the Grand National (embarrassingly geekily exciting), and the eve of my ski holiday (oh boy, I feel like engaging in a sexual act... can I say that on here? [Of course you can, it's your blog - Ed]).

So, I shall be in France for Chrimbo. And that means limited access to my usual accounts and facilities which enable me to share my (occasional) racing thoughts, and sundry other bluster, with you.

'Why are you telling me this, Bisogno?', I hear you yell... well, OK, I can't actually hear you, but metaphorically I can. Because you're probably asking the rule number one of marketing; the old 'are you tuned into WII FM?', as it were.

[WII FM: What's In It For Me]

Sheesh, yikes, stop prevaricating and cut to the chase, would you Captain Blogger?!

All right, the long and short of it is this: in the interests of expediency and seasonal bonhomie, I shall be posting my daily TrainerTrackStats selections here on the blog from tomorrow for the week.

Oh, and the short of it is me... Little man, you see.


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Some Friday Fun before I whizz off, and you may already be aware of America's second favourite dysfunctional family. Personally, I've come late to the party, and enjoy these chaps immensely, especially Stewie (the baby), who one uncharitable chum of mine suggested bore more than a passing resemblance to your humble scribe, in attitude if not physical presentation.

I hope you like these: especially look out for the 'this is not theatre' towards the end, and ask yourself - as I asked myself - 'why the hell is that so funny?!!'





Have a very Merry Christmas, my ethereal friends, and I'll hope to catch up with you very soon...

Matt

 

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Friday, 14 December 2007

The Best Striker On The Planet Right Now?

Friday, dear reader, and I usually put something funny on here to entertain you into the weekend.

This week though, I want to share with you a little bit of video on a guy who I think may be the best striker on the planet right now.

Anyone who saw Karim Benzama tear Rangers apart on Wednesday night will testify to the talent of this boy, who has already smashed in 12 goals in 17 games in the French League. He's made it into the French national side as well, scoring on debut against Austria and bagging another two against the Faroes.

It will be no surprise to see him leave in the Summer, if not in January, for a major European club (not that Lyon are any back number).

He's a class act, and he's going to get better. You may not have heard of him before, but you can be sure you're going to hear plenty about him in the future.

Ladies and gentleman, I give you Karim Benzama...



Have a great weekend, and look out for Straw Bear in the International at Cheltenham tomorrow.

Matt

 

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Wednesday, 12 December 2007

Ho Ho Ho.. Christmas Freebies, Because You're Lovely!

Tis the season to be jolly, dear reader, and also the season of goodwill to all men (and women).

In the spirit of the season, and because it's no skin off my (rather attractive, if slightly protrusive) nose, I'm making everything I've ever sold previously available to you on my Nag3 site. And, best of all, it's going to cost you nothing, zilch, zip, nada, now't. In other words, it's gratis!

Wow, what a guy!

So, if you click your browser over to the 'free systems' tab (it's in the header bar, next to blog), you'll see a whole bunch of items that say 'NEW!', on the basis that... well, on the basis that they're new.

The research is a year out of date in most cases, but many / most of the trends remain valid.

Anyway, it's all free, so if you like it, great. If you don't that's ok too (but don't moan about it!!)

To matters more current, and Hexham was the first cancellation I think this season due to frost and, if the draft in my house is anything to go by, it won't be the last this week.

Tomorrow sees racing at Ludlow, Taunton and Huntingdon, and there are a hatful of TTS runners (in fact, more than I'd wish for to be honest!).

This season, TTS had a fine September and October, before a disastrous November. December has reverted to the black, and the monthly picture looks thus:

September: +£194
October: +£203
November: -£1033 (ouch)
December: +£733
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Overall: +£97

These figures are based on £20 stakes and returns via betfair of 16% greater than SP (less a 5% commission).

I like the look of a couple tomorrow: in the 12.30 at Huntingdon, Dundridge Native is on a hattrick after a facile brace of victories against dodgepots and assorted other crocks. She was the one bright spot in my recent trip to Plumpton (her trainer, Jim Best, has a phenomenal record with hurdlers there), and - although up another stone or so - will take some stopping.

Her front running style will have many of these on the stretch passing the lollypop first time round, and they should have all cried enough come the second time.

Mendosino is an obvious danger, but I reckon the Native will be too strong.

In the 3.00 at the same track, Thievery, a horse who couldn't get it right for TTS followers on a number of occasions last season, clicked into gear on debut this season, and may be that bit stronger now. He will give a run for the shekels here.

Elsewhere, Mexican Bob sets a high standard to aim for in the 1.50 at Taunton and I reckon he's probably the bet of the day. I'll be having a Bob or two (geddit?!) on Alan King's hardy novice.

I'm against Welsh Main in the first as well.

Good luck to you, and I hope you find something you like in the free stuff.

If you want to know more about this season's TTS, check out www.TrainerTrackStats.com

Enjoy!

Matt

 

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Sunday, 9 December 2007

Friday Fun on Sunday: Some Light Entertainment from Eastenders Heavies

Happy Sunday, dear reader, and I hope you enjoy this as much as I did...



Cheers
Matt

 

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Saturday, 8 December 2007

"Utterly Scandalous, Inept, Downright Embarrassing..."

Words, dear reader.

The kind of words one might use when describing the defective detective work that led to the Fallon et al vs. Regina case, which was finally cringeingly dismissed yesterday, BEFORE the defence got to commence their response to the prosecution. The judge informed the jury that there was patently no case to answer.

In a case that cost you and me, as UK taxpayers, over £6m (before countersues are launched by Fallon's brief, and those of his co-defendants), it is just preposterous to consider the flimsy 'evidence' that brought this trial to a courtroom.

Consider the case for the prosecution (and, please, try not to snigger too loudly at the back):

- Fallon is alleged to have thrown 17 races. (During this period, he actually won at a higher strike rate than he did during the rest of that season, a season which saw him crowned champion jockey!)

- During the races in question, Fallon actually lost co-defendants over £100,000 who were stupid enough to bet against probably the owner flat rider of our generation to have a hunger that compares with the legendary Lester Piggott.

- Fallon sent texts to co-defendants sharing his thoughts on the chances of his mounts. Lets face it, folks, if you had a mate who was a jockey - a champ at that - would you or would you not ask him for his thoughts on the day's sport?! (To contextualise this, Fallon also received texts on a very frequent basis from one Michael Owen, BUPA Gold Card carrier and occasional footballer for Newcastle and England).

In what amounts to a constructive 'framing' in my opinion, the testimony of Jim McGrath, Channel 4's leading commentator, and chief form analyst at Timeform, the UK's number one formbook, was conveniently omitted from the record, in favour of a stipendiary steward from Australia, a nation with very different rules of racing to UK.

Indeed, Ray Murrihy (the aforementioned steward, and a man who now has about the same credibility in this country as the lamentably laughable Jane Stickels), admitted to knowing nothing of the rules of UK racing and, furthermore, stated that it was irrelevant to his judgment of the rides in the context of the case. Two words spring to mind: buff and oon.

For the City of London Police to dismiss McGrath's evidence in favour of Murrihy's is the criminal investigation equivalent of putting your fingers in your ears and saying, "ner ner ner, I'm not listening".

I mean, can they really have expected - in a courtroom, with some of the leading barristers in the country baying for blood - that these small question marks (ahem) in the case wouldn't be discussed...?!

I put it to you, my long suffering fellow punters, that the real victims in this case are us, the bookies' fodder. For seventeen long dark months we have had to look at the jockeys in a race and not see the name, K Fallon, assure us that if the animal he's stirruped up on is even nearly good enough to win, this man will dismount inside the final furlong, sling the said nag over his shoulder, and carry the fecker home in front if needs be!

And, moreover, I put it to you that the criminals in this case are both City of London Police and the British Horseracing Authority: the former for blatantly trying to create a case to justify their high profile 'swoops' on one of the country's leading sportsmen (and a number of other innocent individuals), and the latter for totally incriminating themselves by offering the leading investigator, Acting Detective Inspector Mark Manning (he sure was acting!), a job on two separate occasions.

Not only has Manning proved he is a pathetic policeman, but he's also admitted under oath that he knows next to nothing about horse racing. How the hell is this man qualified to even deliver the post to the BHA? (with apologies to any friends from Royal Mail who may be reading).

In summary, it will be most instructive to learn how Fallon et al respond to what has been a year and half's worth of loss of earnings, huge character defamation, and an indelible tarring with the brush of suspicion. I suspect we may not have heard the last of this...

Matt

 

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Friday, 7 December 2007

From Paris to Piraeus, via Plumpton (and Dusseldorf)

Two weeks since I saw last corresponded, dear reader, two whole weeks. Never before has my commitment to the ethereal cause found more wanting and, dare I say it, never again…

By way of mitigation, let me explain. You see, I’ve been a rather busy bunny, what with one thing and another.

As regular readers will know, I was in Paris in mid-November. Since then, the whirling dervish of the world of work has been unrelenting. Aside from a day out at Plumpton, which I’m afraid I can’t offer too much commendation to, I have been slaving feverishly over a hot PC for my registered charity paymasters.

Indeed, when not a slave to them, I have been a slave to my own affections for my lovely: the upshot of this combination being neglect of you, my dear reader.

Last week was murderous, as I was working away in the Greek port town of Piraeus, near Athens. Very long days, and pretty long nights (Mythos is a very fine beer, and the seafood was exceptional!), saw yours truly wrung out by Friday.

Worse was to follow however, as for me, it would not be a flight back to London and a weekend of R&R.

Oh no, thanks to exquisitely poor planning on my part, I’d agreed to play in an old man’s football tournament in a town called Heiligenhaus, near Dusseldorf in Germany.

It turns out our team were representing the fine city of Basildon, who are twinned with the aforementioned town.

It also turned out that Basildon has an excellent drinking pedigree, but a particularly poor footballing one. I got to Dusseldorf, via Munich, around 7pm and taxi’d directly to the Old Town (or Aldstadt) for some beer and the dirtiest pork knuckle you ever saw.

Altbier (literally ‘old beer’) is the local grog, and very quaffable it is too. Akin to our bitter, but served cold (I can hear the CAMRA members groaning down their pipes as I write!), it goes down a treat.

Comes up quite well too, judging by one of my chums reverse peristalsis efforts…!

Saturday was the day of the tournament and we played a league format against six other sides from all over Germany.

The Berliners were very good, but the winners were Duisburg Nord. What? How did FC Basildon fare? Well, the less said the better I think, but suffice it to say, we came in seventh of seven, tailed off.

In fairness, given that we are not footballers (except me, and I’m hardly Maradona), we acquitted ourselves as well as could be expected, and surpassed the best previous performance by a Basildon unit, by scoring five goals.

Indeed, we scored three against the winners (two from the boot of your humble scribe). This was remarkable on the basis that the winners only conceded five goals in the entire tournament. And three were against us!

We had a German ringer playing in goal for us. Valdi, for it was he, was a pretty good cat until he injured his hand in the fourth game. He insisted on playing on, to his credit / stupidity.

It has since been revealed that he broke two fingers, and tore the ligaments in a third. Our very own Bert Trautman! Alas, for Valdi, he will miss seven weeks of work, as he is a mechanic. He’s a folk hero in Basildon now though (scant consolation)!

Saturday night saw us all congregate at the local ale house for (a lot) more beer, and some decent grub. The Germans love their beer and their meat, so we clean living boys (ahem) were in our element.

Highlight of the evening, apart from the bizarre raffle (where prizes ranging from a particularly offensive looking wurst / sausage to – I kid you not – a car hazard triangle, and a set of Samurai kitchen knives!), was undoubtedly our late night / early morning singalong, where we tried to teach the locals ‘Roll out the Barrel’ at 2am.

This was followed by the most ironic rendition of ‘We Are The Champions’ I’m ever likely to hear. Brilliant.

Sunday was payback day. My legs disowned my body, my body wasn’t talking to my legs, my arms had serious amnesia and thought they’d drowned in a canoe of Wearside.

Actually, talking of canoes, Saturday night’s 4.30am finish, was topped and tailed nicely by Sunday morning’s 10.30 am appointment at the Heiligenhaus Canoe Club (I kid you not).

Brilliantly hosted by a man you would not trust around small children, he cracked open the altbiers and laughed quite humiliatingly at my request for caffeine… He then poured himself half a pint of white wine, and beamed, “I only ever drink wine… in the morning!”

The Good Lord only knows what this man sups post meridian…!

After the canoe club, there was just enough time for a Greek lunch in the darts club (I’m really not joking), before I headed for the airport.

Much concern about cancelled flights later, and I managed to get on the only steel bird into London that night (storms cause the remainder to be cancelled).

This week has been no less hectic, so again, I offer my apologies for failing to communicate.

I will find some time to write something actually related to horse racing over the weekend, and to update on the latest state of affairs in the Nag Fantasy Football League.

I’m off for a well earned lie down and a glass of altbier…

Ciao Pronto!

Matt

 

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