Horses for Courses

There is an English proverb which is “Horses  for courses” which basically means different people are suited to different things. I liked the idea of the heading as this car show was held at Newmarket Race Course. I’m certainly not a horse racing fan, but I do have a lot in common with ponies and horses, the original Ford Pony cars and how many horses I can unleash under the hood that is. Anyway, I have had a little surf of the net and found some history of the Newmarket Race Course:

Racing in Newmarket was recorded in the time of James I. Charles II was known to attend races on Newmarket Heath with his brother, the future James II. The first recorded race was a match for £100 between horses owned by Lord Salisbury and Marquess of Buckingham in 1622. The racecourse itself was founded in 1636. Around 1665, Charles inaugurated the Newmarket Town Plate and in 1671 became the first and only reigning monarch to ride a winner.  Up until 1744, the two most valuable races run at the course were the King’s Plate and the Town Plate. Two more Plate races were added in that year, paid for by local traders, both worth 50 guineas (a coin of approximately one quarter ounce of gold that was minted in Great Britain between 1663 and 1814, worth around £1.05p in modern money). The name came from the Guinea region in West Africa, where much of the gold used to make the coins originated- one was a race for five-year-olds carrying 9 stone, one was an open age race in four mile heats. Another paid for by landowners was a four-year-old race over four miles, each carrying 8 stone 7 lbs. At that time, formal races at Newmarket only took place twice a year – once in April, once in October. Since then many, many more big race meets have been added to the calendar making it Britain’s premier race venue.

Newmarket is hugely influenced by the horse racing set, and all the money and trappings that go with it. Some beautiful houses around the town which are some of the most expensive I have seen in the country side with the land that comes with them. Also without a doubt the horses are looked after properly at the race course with rubberised walk ways where the horses walk, the place is spotlessly clean. There is a huge betting presence there to take your hard earned cash from you with plenty of viewing areas, but not as many as thought there would be.

When I was at Elveden Car Show a few weeks ago, I was handed a flier for this event with a lot of hype for new cars, classic cars, children’s entertainment and stalls. This was the second year for the event and was going to be bigger and better than the previous year. I found out that only a handful of classic cars attended last year.

On arrival I was directed in and told to follow the path round to the main display area. Being greeted by another staff member who decided that I was heavy so I wasn’t allowed on the grass, so I was told to park out the front of the main building just on the corner.

After parking up and cleaning the dust of the car after the drive to Newmarket I had a look around the other cars. There wasn’t a lot to look at all, there was however a lot of new cars from sales rooms around the area selling their stock of brand new and used cars. I believe this was the main purpose of the event and the classic were asked to attend in order to get people into the place and provide some other interest.

And there was a very well dressed older gentleman who was the ‘car expert’ there. He said this was the first AC Cobra made and was worth millions.

He was partly correct as the Original AC (chassis number CSX2000) is indeed is worth tens of millions, it was also in left hand drive and it’s certainly not left unguarded at a Newmarket Race Course. However the pretty lady immaculately dressed and dripping with some expensive jewellery, who was about a quarter of his age I reckon, looked (almost) impressed at his knowledge!

The other side of the main building was where the car dealers from all makes who were selling cars at discounted prices and where the majority of the people were to be honest.

Even a few great looking motorbikes were for sale along with a few couple of classics.

There was one car (I think it was a car) that caught my eye from Renault. I did try and get in the ‘car’ but I failed (very) miserably I might add. I got shoes bigger than this car in fact.

There were a few Mustangs there all be it this first one was a statue and not a Mustang from what I could work out from my very limited horse knowledge.

Almost opposite me was me was an Aston Martin race car that previously one its race the week before. a 740bhp ‘detuned’ to 600bhp to allow it to race.

The entertainment was a generous term unless you wanted to eat burgers, have a go on the racing simulator or play the electronic driving range for the golfers out there. Neither of which were exactly busy should we say.

 

The only stalls was a home made sweet stall, a bloke selling a couple of old workshop manuals and the plod with a Porsche GT4 they use. Now I know where my tax paying money goes, not on the maintenance of the roads, oh no. It’s being spent out for these jobsworths so they can sit in flash cars and eat donuts all day! They just wait on slip roads waiting for a motorist doing a couple of miles over the speed limit instead of catching murders, grooming gangs, knife crime and rapists in third world capital city now called ‘Londonistan’! Rant over. Before you say it; no I’m not jealous – I am not a Porsche fan and never have been. Great cars obviously, but they just don’t do anything for me.

As the day wore slowly on after running out of things to look, I wasn’t feeling to well and just sat in my chair, in the shade and reading a free newspaper I was given on my little walk around. I even asked an official if I could leave early as I wasn’t feeling great, but health and safety guidelines said no, I had to stay until 4.30pm. I thought it was just the sun, but it turned into something a bit more for the next couple of days. But to add to my woes the general consensus of the day was they public could sit in the cars of the dealers. The public thought that this applied to the classic cars as well, I had to stop kids pulling on the handles and I made a point of telling one bloke who opened my drivers door before I even locked it, I was getting my chair out the trunk at the time. He had taken of his back pack, dumped it on the floor and was about to get in my car. I told him to pay some respect and to ‘ruck right off’ should we say, those that know me will know exactly what I said. He just didn’t like the idea of me stopping him. One thing was for sure, when it comes to my car, there was no way he was getting in it. His girlfriend did come over to apologise after he walked away. I was not amused and never moved from my perch watching the car at all times when somebody got near it.

On the plus side, have you noticed that I didn’t mention the rain? Well it didn’t rain and the sun was out all day, at long last my rain jinx had been broken. 😀

As there wasn’t a lot to take photos of I tried a few different ideas for a few shots. Where I had parked the car it was a little slope, so if the car looks as though it leaning to one side, it was.

Newmarket Race Course was a lovely place to be, but I doubt I will go back there again. Such a shame, it could have been so much more, it wasn’t as though they didn’t have the room either. I think this last pic sums it up for me. The day had its ups and downs.

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About One man and his Mustang

I'm just a man with a Classic 1966 Ford Mustang Coupe and a collection of tools that just keeps getting bigger in order that I could do the job right. When I first started this blog this is what I wrote: "I had bought a project car, that had been neglected, set fire to, rusted and abused. As a result of that she needed a bare metal strip down, a nut and bolt restoration." Four and a half years later the car was completed, on the road and shown at the UK's premier Classic Car Show, everything that was done to that car is documented here. I now have the privilege to drive one of America's most recognised cars and a true Icon, the Ford Mustang. I'm still sane after the blood, sweat and tears, so would I do it again? Oh yes!
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10 Responses to Horses for Courses

  1. kkessler833 says:

    Great post! I love to learn!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. As I was reading your write-up, I was thinking “at least it didn’t rain.” Then I got to your wrap-up.

    Like

  3. I quite like the little Renault for London driving 😀

    Like

  4. Debbie says:

    Hooray for no rain. And OH MY – I certainly do not like that half crazy folks thought it was okay to sit in the show cars! Husband Brad has only driven my latest one time, and I was with him. I will for sure remember the phrase “ruck right off”. It might come in handy over here across the pond. Nothing like a shine and show.

    Like

  5. Thanks Simon, I didn’t realise the racecourse was as old as it was during my searches. A fun day.

    Like

  6. Simon says:

    Love the history re the racecourse, to put the day into its context. Thanks!!!

    Liked by 1 person

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