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Thursday, July 14, 2005


Tomorrow evening's race meeting at Newmarket, when Ronan Keating will be appearing live in concert after the last race, is a complete sell out and anyone who does not already have a ticket should not travel to the July Course.

The next three Friday evenings on the July Course - 22nd July (Jools Holland), 29th July (Will Young) and 5th August (Status Quo) - are also certain to sell out in advance with only a very few tickets still available. They can be purchased by visiting www.newmarketracecourses.co.uk or by calling the Newmarket Nights hotline on 08707 200 201. Tickets for the final Night, Friday 12th August, when Brian McFadden will be appearing in concert after racing, are also selling well though at this stage there is still reasonable availability.


Mick Kinane is flying to Britain tomorrow (Friday) to ride Proclamation in a key piece of work on the July Course as the colt builds up to his first Group One race, the Cantor Spreadfair Sussex Stakes at Goodwood on 27th July.

Proclamation, who is trained in Newmarket by Jeremy Noseda, will work with one galloping companion at approximately 2pm while Blue Dakota, for whom Noseda also has Group One aspirations, will work separately with a galloping companion. Blue Dakota won his first four races as a two-year-old last season before disappointing when favourite for the Richmond Stakes at Goodwood. He has not run since.


Salisbury's top race, the Group 3 totesport Sovereign Stakes, has been confirmed statistically as one of the leading races in the country of 2004.

The average rating of the first four horses to finish - Norse Dancer, Lucky Story, Hurricane Alan and Passing Glance - was 118, and only 14 of the 26 Group 1 races for three year olds and upwards had a higher rating. It also equalled the rating of the leading Group 2 race of 2004, Newmarket's Princess of Wales's Stakes.

Jeremy Martin, Clerk of the Course at Salisbury, said: "We knew at the time that the totesport Sovereign Stakes was a good race, but to see the BHB's data and be the joint fifteenth highest rated race in the country last year is something we are very proud about.

"This was also achieved in its first year as a Group 3 event, having previously been a Listed contest. The race appears very well established."

Previous winners, as a Listed race, were Passing Glance, Priors Lodge and Umistim.

The totesport Sovereign Stakes is over a mile for three year olds and upwards colts and geldings, and this year's renewal takes place on Thursday, August 11. Like last year, the race will be worth £60,000 guaranteed, £10,000 above the Group 3 minimum value.


The Jockey Club announced today that after 32 years in the administration of Racing, Christopher Foster has decided to retire at the end of March 2006. On his retirement he will cease to be the senior executive responsible for the Jockey Club's Regulatory functions, a position he will have held for most of the last 25 years.

Christopher Foster joined Weatherbys from accountants Coopers & Lybrand in 1973. He became the 'Keeper of the Match Book' for the Jockey Club in 1981, following the death of Simon Weatherby, before taking on the role of Executive Director in 1993. After March 2006 he will continue in a consultancy role at the Jockey Club retaining his position as 'Keeper of the Match Book'.

The Regulatory Board under the Chairmanship of John Bridgeman will start the process of seeking a successor as Chief Executive of the Board in the early autumn.

The Senior Steward, Julian Richmond-Watson, said today: "Christopher's selfless contribution cannot be underestimated. For over 30 years he has dedicated his working life to the Jockey Club and to British racing. Few people have a deeper understanding of how our sport operates and the breadth of his experience has proved to be invaluable to the Jockey Club.

"Due to his work on the international stage of racing administration and regulation he is also hugely respected by turf authorities around the globe. He will be sorely missed after his retirement, although luckily for the Jockey Club he will continue working for the Club on a consultancy basis."

Christopher Foster added: "It had always been my intention to retire by the time I was sixty. My main regret will be leaving colleagues and friends with whom I have worked for such a long time. They form the most experienced body of racing regulators anywhere in the world and I wish them continuing success in maintaining the integrity of British Racing.

"I shall be doing some consultancy work for the Jockey Club including continuing to represent the Club on the Executive Council of the International Federation of Horseracing Authorities. I hope that I may be able to use some of the wide ranging experiences gained in the sport's administration over the last 30 years in other fields - otherwise it's the garden, the dogs and the golf course."

For old articles (from 1st March 2000) go to the Newslink Archive

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