Thommo silenced as he starts cancer treatment

For anyone recognised as a workaholic any kind of break can be a difficult time. Leading racing broadcaster Derek Thompson is one of those people, and he embarks today on an enforced rest from duties brought about by the discovery of cancer.

He’ll be admitted to Addenbrooke’s Hospital in Cambridge this morning for an operation later in the day to remove a tumour near the bowel and has been told to rest for eight weeks before returning to work, That’s not the plan as far as the 61 year old presenter and commentator for Channel 4 racing is concerned.

Thompson said after the news of his operation was released yesterday, “I’ll be in hospital for a week and they’ve said for to eight weeks off. Never mind the eight – I don’t like four weeks off.” Ever committed to his work, Thompson revealed he had postponed surgery so as to be able to work last week. He added, “They wanted me to go in last week, but there was no way I could miss Royal Ascot. I would have let too many people down. I’ll be back by the end of July.”

You sense he sees his illness as an inconvenience, and it’s evident he will be back at work as soon as he possibly can. He said, “It’s going to be very frustrating because after Royal Ascot there are so many top meetings coming up around the country that I would normally enjoy but I will continue watching them in hospital.” Perhaps there is special dispensation for Addenbrooke’s to have a subscription to the attheraces channel.

Thommo starts his treatment in optimistic mood. “I feel alright. It’s my wife Julie that’ll be suffering in the next few days,” he said. She’ll be kept busy answering more than 100 wishes of support that came through yesterday.

We’ll join in wishing him the best.

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