As with tradition it was the annual visit to Kempton Park to watch the King George VI Chase. Clad in an old Barbour with most pockets full of items one may require for an afternoon beside the furlongs as opposed to the river we made our way down the A316.
The race card was full of names of horses and riders that would mean that the days racing would be pretty close, odds with the bookies weretight with the favourites but a few outsiders would give better returns and on a day like to day who knows.
With rain forecast for 3pm the going was to be heavy which should have favoured Cue Card over Long Run the favourite. This seven- year- old gelding ridden by Sam Waley-Cohen ran well but had to edge Captain Chris by a neck to win after a mistake five hurdles from home. This 3 mile Chase held in very wet conditions was well supported and the inclement weather didn’t dappen the spirits of the festive crowd that gathered. Wrapped in winter coats, Barbours and tweeds the crowds took to the tarmac infront of the stands to cheer in the first three race winners. To be fair the conditions had a hand in the results, favourites faltered and new stars came to the line.
Rajdhani Express put in a stunning performance making up for being a faller last time out. Dynaste gave a more than adequate performance on the day.
The rain fell heavily from Payne’s Grey clouds and the ground was sodden, so much so the water sat on the surface. The lake in the middle of the park was brim full and a small tributary of the Thames that passes along the back of the course ran with pace.
Yellow painted stewards vehicals were on hand to drag cars that burried their wheels in the mud and gravel traps as the hoards of spectators made their way home after the main event. Some hour and a half later we made our way out of Kempton Park and homeward to feast on cold cuts, pickles and clementines washed down with mugs of mulled wine, Macon and a night cap of Old Pulteney 17 Year Old.