Friday, November 27, 2015

Day 1: Adelaide Test Match

I can honestly say that it was a great feeling getting up this morning on my way to yet another Test series at a ground I had always wanted to go to. Yes, it was early - a 4.30am alarm call to be picked up by Dad just after 5.00am, to also get Dan and then catch the 5.30am train from Oak Flats for the journey to the airport. Yes, it was the beginning of a very long but enjoyable day.

At the airport we met up with Bono and eventually worked our way in to the inner sanctum. Through a rookie error, both John and I were pulled over by airport security to have our bags searched again, because we had decided to pack aerosol sprays in our carry-on luggage. Great job us.
After that it was time to enjoy a couple of pre-flight beers - otherwise known as breakfast.

In honour of Phil Hughes, who had died exactly one year previous. his initials and Test number

In honour of our mate Tim Davies, his initials and his Kiama cricket Club 1st Grade number

Ready and excited for the 90 minute flight to Adelaide!

Bono lasted about 20 minutes before the inevitable snooze.
Having arrived and wended our way through the usual path to the taxi rank, our driver took us to our place of residence for the next four nights, the Adabco Boutique Hotel. Though it was 2.5 kilometres from the Adelaide Oval, I wanted it that way so we could walk through town every day to find a pub or bar to frequent, both on the way to the ground and on the way home. The walk wouldn't hurt any of us either.

Having stowed our gear (as it was only 11.30am and we couldn't get into our rooms yet) we walked into town for lunch, which we found in the food court off Rundle Mall. It wasn't long before Dan was already delving into his funds.

The walk up to the Adelaide Oval is picturesque indeed. It is even better once inside. I had bought tickets for the concourse in front of the old scoreboard for all three days, and it is even more spectacular in person.

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

The Almanack's Melbourne Cup Tips

It's that time of year to find some horses to put a line through because I put the kiss of death on them. So here we go.

Melbourne Cup Tips 2015.
  1. 10. Trip to Paris. Terrific run to finish second behind Mongolian Khan in the Caulfield Cup put to bed any doubts he could run the distance and had any hangover from the flight over. Won at Ascot over 4000 metres in June, and 3rd and 5th in two races over 3300 metres in August. Bred to run this distance and looks the goods. Tommy Berry on board is a winning double.
  2. 11. Who Shot Thebarman. Third in last year's Melbourne Cup, and second in the Sydney Cup in April showed has a good temperament for the distance, and good runs since in the Turnbull and the Caulfield has him set up nicely for a shot at the Cup. Blake Shinn and Chris Waller help the pedigree of the horse no end.
  3. 3. Fame Game. The Japanese champ is favourite for the race, but beginning to drift with the weather and the quality of the field. Won over 3400 in February and was second over 3200 in may. Hadn't run for five months before eye catching 6th in the Caulfield where he looked to have plenty in reserve. The long spell at least indicates that the horse will be fresh.
Next best - Preferment. Another Chris Waller trained horse with Hugh Bowman on board, must be respected. Also keep an eye out for Max Dynamite with Frankie Dettori on board, has also great form over long distances in Europe.

Best long shot - everyone's favourite Melbourne Cup horse Red Cadeaux has come over for the race four times, and finished second on three of those occasions. You could not begrudge the ten year old a victory, but it would appear unlikely with the horses in today's race.

All tips for the day:
Race 1. Missrock
Race 2. Precious Gem
Race 3. Four Carat
Race 4. Pyrrolic
Race 5. Prompt Return
Race 6. Valley Sweetheart
Race 7. Trip To Paris
Race 8. Sadler's Lake
Race 9. Kuro
Race 10. Wawail.

There you go - you can safely put a line through those horses now I've said all that. Happy punting!