I can remember it like it was yesterday.
1991 mid-year holidays, first year of high school, Dad took us away (to Grafton. Grafton!?!).
Now it’s a beautiful place, don’t get me wrong, but six months into higher education, all a kid wanted to do was go down a waterslide or on a rollercoaster to forget about the confusion of algebra and sharing hall ways with those twice his size
But Grafton, hugging the mighty Clarence River in NSW’s north, it was.
Our uncle lived there. As much as Dad enjoyed Uncle Ron’s company though – and still does – there was an ulterior motive.
The staples of every country town are a pub, a church, a Chinese restaurant and a racetrack. In what order, I’ll let you decide. For Dad, the racetrack was a clear number one.
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So on what normally would be a non-descript Wednesday in the middle of July, 1991, off we went to something called the “Winter Racing Carnival”, whatever that was. – along (so it seemed) with the entire town.
We finally made it to the track, and boom. That was it. Hooked. Noise, people, yelling, horses, colour. It all hit this 13 year-old kid between the eyes. As did the chance to make some money, which for a kid who liked his maths to be about numbers, not letters, was a dream.
— Adam Peacock (@adampeacock3) September 17, 2016
Now before you jump up a scream ‘under-age’ and ‘irresponsible parent!’ in the same sentence, fear not, he gave me $20 for the day. Budget. Planning. Actually a useful exercise in that regard!
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But it wasn’t just the punt. It was so much more than that.
It was the day I fell in love with horse racing, not going to a race track. To see these magnificent animals, their nature so genuine, rattling past a speed you only thought possible from vehicle with an engine.
How daring those people on the back of them were (and still are). I’ll never get to experience the rush (and don’t want to either) but to hear and see them fly past still resonates now as much as it did the first time I saw it on a cool day in Grafton.
And back to that day. A horse trained by a family friend, Frank Cleary, by the name of Friend’s Venture, got up in the feature race, the Ramornie Hcp, at 30/1. Dad backed it, so we visited another of those country town staples later that evening. The church was closed, I was under-age for the pub, so a massive Chinese meal it was.
As the name suggests, Friend’s Venture was owned by a bunch of mates who cobbled enough to buy into a horse that hopefully one day might run a good race.
It sure as hell did that day.
A few years later, it’s exciting to finally be like those guys, and own a share in a horse. What is remarkable, is that owning a share in a horse is now affordable for all Australians.
With all 1,000 units being sold in miRunners’ first colt Saganaki, miRunners is now looking to purchase their second colt or filly. To guarantee your unit in the next horse and to be a part of this amazing experience purchase your Priority Access Voucher by clicking here.
You can even consider asking your mates to join in. It is a wonderful concept, especially for someone who will never forget that day at Grafton with his dad.
Adam Peacock hosts FOX SPORTS’ Match Day Saturday in Australia – a live A-League football show. Adam has also hosted Fox Sports’ coverage of Grand Slam Tennis events including Wimbledon plus the Australian and US Open. He has also covered events such as the Olympic Games, Commonwealth Games & Bledisloe Cup Rugby.