The Winners 2017

  • Your Humble Servant by Molly Hunter

    His first chapter was all so inconspicuous, a view of the world that probably comprised of a straw-lined floor in a rural corner of Tipperary. 6th of March 1991, a bay colt by La Fontaine, a sire yet to be endorsed by the Grand National and Cheltenham Festival winners he’d one day produce. La Fontaine was unknown, with a suspicious USA after his name. The colt he’d sired was cut from a similarly inauspicious cloth, albeit with the more familiar IRE suffix. IRE, like OBE or MBE....

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  • The Photographer by Lara Prior Palmer

    Picture the photo: my limp body leant against a motorbike, arch-rival Devan in a heap behind me, devastated to have lost her Mongol Derby victory. The perspective draws your eye from my relieved smile to Devan’s scowl. If it makes you giggle, consider the cheek of the photographer. The image tells of his detached amusement....

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  • Winter Solstice by Jonathan Curran

    He stares at the damp patch on the far wall, trying to remember when he had opened his eyes. He twists out of the strangle of blankets and steps on his ash-tray. In the kitchen the plastic windows show the slate grey sky’s cold darkness and the alien eyes of the digital clock read 04:17....

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  • Memories by Susie Eddis

    I don’t remember it, but when I was 6 weeks old, I won the Placepot at Ascot’s December jump meeting with a bet taken out in my newly-given name. It is referred to every year on that day, so I am very familiar with the story. At the time, everyone joked that it would be the start of a lifelong love of gambling, and it is true that I do seem to have a rather highly-developed bent towards an, ‘opportunity’. I don’t remember the actual event, but I do wonder if through the telling, it has altered me....

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  • A Painting Worth A Thousand Words by Beth Ransome

    I remember coming home, his helmet the colours of fire on the third hook of the porch, his boots all muddy and grassy. It was the only day he finished early. He was training almost constantly now, so incredibly, so fascinatingly devoted....

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  • At Cheltenham by Mick McGuinness

    It is Wednesday 16th March 2016. There are approximately 60,000 people at Cheltenham Racecourse. I am one of them. Around 15,000 have, like me, come over from Ireland. I don't know how many of those took a day off school to be here, but I think I’m the only one. ...

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  • Roaring Racer by Pippa Moore

    I gripped my knees to the brown leather racing saddle, my breath hung heavily in the air with anticipation. I was crouched low on Roary, my thoroughbred racing dream. My tingling fingers clenched the rubber reins; sweat was binding on my palms. My aching knees were bent on the saddle against Roary’s sides. I muttered motivational words into his freshly clipped ear....

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