One of the many problems that flat racing has, dear reader, is its various end of season 'championship' meetings. There is Arc day in Paris; Champions day at Newmarket; and, of course, my favourite of them all, the Breeders Cup in various locations across the States.
It is this divergence and dilution of the top drawer horses that contributes to the relatively dispassionate response to the climax of the flat calendar, in my opinion.
No such issues with the National Hunt racing calendar, however, as all roads - and tracks - lead inexorably to Cheltenham in March. Perhaps due to the lack of international competition or maybe because it just established itself first and insurmountably (a bit like Betfair), Cheltenham in March is almost universally held as the ultimate test.
The only exceptions really are those who like four and a half miles, thirty fences, and a flat track...
So it is that as we wave adieu to most of the big guns from the flat - many of whom we'll never see on a racecourse again - we bid good day to some dear old friends of the jumping sphere. These hardy perennials are known to us well, and many of us can readily recount favoured conditions of the top beasties.
We've watched them for years, and we have more years of their company to look forward to. This protracted narrative of the winter game endears its stars unto us in a way that the fleeting brilliance of a Sea The Stars never can. Despite the undoubted excellence of his career, Sea The Stars is here today, gone tomorrow: lost to the stallion duties, and the accompanying millions, that must inevitably ensue.
So, cheerio speedsters, and hello lollopers! Yes, for the next six months or so, the jumpers will prevail, both on the track, and as 'de rigeur' woollenwear in these chillier seasons... There are many that I'm looking forward to seeing, including Sizing Europe and Katchit.
These two beasts have dragged a couple of my most sizeable wagers west in the past few years. And yet, despite that, I hold them both in high regard still. The former may win the Arkle, but is no value at his current odds; the latter may win the Champion Hurdle or World Hurdle, but more likely neither.
Every weekend from here until winter turns to spring, and the frosts have thawed once more, we'll be greeted by the names of so many dear old friends as we peer down the race cards over a bowl of corn frosty pops or a bacon buttie.
And, I say, bring it on! Gavin's excellent TrainerTrackStats is once again proving its mettle with four winners from 16 runners already on the board (including 7/1 and 9/2 shots), and an incredible (and incredibly frustrating!) place strike rate of 75% - fully 12 of the 16 qualifiers to date have hit the board, including nine of the last ten.
As the last few 'after the Lord Mayor's Show' flat turf meetings tiptoe back into the shadows, so the quality and frequency of the hardy half of the equine breed's race fixtures steps up.
Next weekend features the Silver Trophy from Chepstow, and the first card of the year from Aintree. Thereafter, we've got Ascot and Wetherby on the last day of October (when, incidentally, me and the Geegeez Racing Club mob will be at Newmarket watching our winter warmers whizz up the gallops).
November is illuminated by the Open meeting at Cheltenham and numerous other big pots. And from then until March and April, it is chases and hurdles all the way... Bring it on, I say, bring it on!
Now you're probably fed up of hearing about my new venture and, if you are, no problem: feel free to look away now.
If you're interested however, and I hope many of you are, you should know that I've added a video to the special area at HorseRacingExperts - you need to sign up to watch it. If you're already registered, you'll have received an email telling you exactly what to do.
In my short time (three years) in the online world, I've never seen interest quite like I have for this somewhat different product offering, which is pleasing (and something of a relief, as I'd taken a bit of a punt that others would share my passion).
Lots of people are now thinking they've had enough of the perpetual plop peddled by punks, pilferers, pickpockets, prowlers and pirates (I just found my thesaurus!), and they are happy to be empowered to create their own winning systems.
If you've watched any of the videos I've done, you'll have seen how easy it is to get cracking, and I can't wait to see what you guys come up with! 😀
If you haven't registered for the free stuff at HorseRacingExperts, please think about it, even if you've absolutely no intention of grabbing a copy of the 3 DVD set, 20 angles (and 16 systems) manual, and lifetime Pro forum access. As I said previously, I want all Geegeez readers to get these goodies, irrespective of whether you're fussed for what I'm selling.
The link's here - it's the usual name and email drill - and, after confirming from the email you'll receive, you'll be plunged headlong into a 'systemsfest' with your very own free entry wristband.
Enough wittering from me, though I have to say, it's so much nicer writing blog posts than sales copy!
p.s. If you're registered already, and you've been perusing the goodness within, do leave a comment to tell those still wavering what you think. Thanks in advance!