Wednesday 31 August 2011

Britain Misses Our 'Enry!

Legendary British heavyweight boxer, Henry Cooper passed away in 2011 at his son's home in Oxted in Surrey. It is thought that he never quite recovered from losing his beloved wife in 2008 and his identical twin George 2 years later.

Sir Henry will go down in history as the man who floored a young Cassius Clay in 1963. The story continues with the dubious methods used by trainer Angelo Dundee to ensure the brash, young American would come back to win.

He held the British heavyweight title for 12 years along with periods as Empire, Commonwealth and European title holder - not bad for someone who, in this day and age, would box as a cruiserweight

To read about the life and career of Sir Henry Cooper, please click on the following link.....

Sunday 28 August 2011

New Articles w/e 28th August 2011

Just a quick post to list 3 articles that I have had published this week. To read them, please click on the title.

Asford of Ashford and Simpson fame has passed away from throat cancer.
Annual Irish race meeting at Laytown, takes place on the beach
The race to be champion jockey hots up.

Happy reading!

Saturday 27 August 2011

Race to the Champion Jockey Crown

There are 10 weeks of the flat racing season left with such excitement to come as the St Leger at Doncaster, the Cambridgeshire and Cesarewitch at Newmarket. Not to mention the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe over at Longchamp, the Melbourne Cup and the climax of the world season, the Breeders Cup.
Behind the Millennium Grandstand at the Rowley Mile course, Newmarket.
When it comes to the jockey title here in the UK, it seems as if it will be won by one of three. To see my thoughts on the contenders and their chances, please click on the following link:

Friday 26 August 2011

Irish Horse Racing on the Beach - Article

There is nothing quite like going horse racing and horse racing in Ireland is an experience in itself. The friendliness of the locals and the craic make it a day to behold and enjoy, should you be so lucky to experience it.

Racing on the beach at Laytown
One such festivity are the races at Laytown - the difference is that Laytown has no racecourse as such. Once a year however the racing circuit comes to Laytown to race, on the beach...... 

I have recently written an article outlining the history of the event along with some up to date information including some more images of past racedays. 

A Laytown Winner
It can be found by clicking the link underneath. Please do have a look.

By the way, we at are still on the lookout for good writers looking for an outlet to share their work. For more information click HERE or email me with any questions you may have at

Thursday 25 August 2011

New Version of the Lords Prayer

A friend sent this to me and I thought it may raise a smile:

"Our father, who art in prison,
my Mum knows not his name,
thy riots come,
read it in the Sun,
in Birmingham, as it is in London,
give us this day our welfare bread
& forgive us our looting,
as we're happy to loot those who defend against us,
lead us not into employment
but deliver us free housing,
for thine is the trainers,
 the PCs and the TVs,
forever and ever
... Innit"

Tuesday 23 August 2011

Rugby League Challenge Cup Final

This coming Saturday, Tatty and the Tatty clan (but not the hound) will be making their way to Wembley for the Rugby League Challenge Cup final between Wigan (boo, hiss!) and Leeds Rhinos (hooray - anyone but Wigan).

As you may have guessed, we are none too keen on the Warriors, being St Helens (and Whitehaven) supporters in this house.

I have looked through the archives and found British Pathé newsreel footage of finals from years gone by (click on images to be taken to British Pathé website) and there is even one showing Wigan winning (just as they won't on Saturday - we hope!)


Wigan beat Hunslet 20-16 for Rugby League Challenge Cup in 1965


Rugby League Challenge Cup Final 1927. Huge crowds flock to see Oldham defeat Swinton in a thrilling contest.


 Teams walking out onto the pitch in 1962 - Wakefield Trinity and Huddersfield.

For this one time and one time only, 

Non-League Day 2011

In case it had escaped your attention, Saturday 3rd September 2011, is Non-League Day 2011.

Non-League Day is the brainchild of QPR and Harrow Borough fan James Doe who after going on QPR’s pre-season tour of Devon in 2010, was greatly impressed by the relaxed atmosphere and the friendliness of all the local supporters he encountered. Realising that because of International fixtures, there were no Premier League or Championship games on this corresponding weekend last year, he saw a perfect opportunity to persuade fans of those bigger clubs to check out their local non-league side instead. The event proved to be an enormous success with many clubs reporting a significant increase in the numbers coming through the turnstiles and several even enjoying their highest gate of the season. 

Harrow Borough's "Earlsmead" home
Charlton Athletic were due to play a League 1 fixture away at Exeter on that day, but the club encouraged its fans who did not relish the trip down to St James’ Park (the other one), to go and watch a non-league club closer to home. In hindsight it was probably good advice, as they went down in Devon by an only goal. Chelsea captain John Terry, ruled out of the England match with a pulled hamstring, was seen at Eastbourne Borough’s match with Darlington (his brother Paul was playing for the visitors) and Match of the Day commentator Jonathan Pearce, went along to Lewes’ Dripping Pan where he was even roped into drawing the raffle at half-time.

Lewes' quaint "Dripping Pan" during renovations in 2006
For this year, Macmillan Cancer Support has come on board as the official charity, along with ex-England international Chris Waddle as the official ambassador. The support of the All Party Football Group in Parliament has also been secured.

MacMillan cancer Support bus
James Doe said, “With England playing in Bulgaria on Friday 2nd September and the Premier League and Championship taking a week off, I urge all fans of the big clubs to get out and watch their local Non-League team instead on Saturday 3rd September 2011! Given the current financial climate, clubs outside the Football League need all the support they can get and your presence at a game will be genuinely appreciated. With admission and refreshments at a fraction of the cost, what's stopping you?”

So for that Saturday (and hopefully many other match days throughout the season), please urge your family, friends, drinking buddies, work colleagues - in fact anyone you know, who normally attends a higher level of football (or is an armchair Sky Sports fan), to join in and support Non-League Day. 

Tuesday 16 August 2011

Robbie Keane Flies the Nest and Modification of the Grand National Course

I know this blog is supposed to revolve around the subjects of horse racing and non-league football and I will go on to the subject of the nags in a moment (I promise), but occasionally I like to drift off topic a little and have a rant about something else (OK, quite often then).

The illustrious Mr Keane
I read today that Tottenham Hotspur and Republic of Ireland striker Robbie Keane, has decided to cross the water and join Mr Beckham at LA Galaxy. Is this an admission that he is past it and cannot cope with the rigours of Premier League football anymore? Or maybe has he become a mercenary to the US dollar?

Probably both if the truth be known.

OK, back to the subject at hand. After the dreadful scenes at this year's at Aintree Grand National, the powers that be have announced some modifications to be in place in time for next years race.
For full details, have a look at my article (link below)

Do you have an opinion on the race? Are the fences too stiff and does anyone involved in National Hunt racing really care about the distress the horses may suffer and even the deaths of horses? I'd love to know your opinion.

Tatty is now off to study the form.

Wednesday 10 August 2011

How to Handle an Eel.

Coming up towards the end of my holiday in East Dorset and today whilst out fishing on the campsite lake, I caught an eel. 

European Eel (Anguila anguila)
Now it is many a long year since I have found one of these critters on the end of my line and it got me thinking about how difficult they are to deal with when it comes to removing hooks etc. 

I was fortunate that it came off the hook in the landing net of its own accord, so I could return it to the lake easily, but for future reference the following page from the Specialist Eel Angling Group on gives good advice on how to handle these very wriggly, slippery (and in all honesty not very nice) creatures. 

Tatty is now sorting out his fishing tackle.