The Captain's Log: TV presenter Jeremy Kyle to appear at Jockeys Association bash

The Professional Jockeys Association got a financial boost when Sheik Hamdan's Shadwell Stud agreed to back their annual award ceremony - the Lesters.

Now, The Captain understands, they have recruited an unlikely double act to be the hosts for the lively evening which will be at the Hilton Park Lane on February 28.

Keeping the 600 guests in some sort of order will be C4's 'Big Fella' Derek Thomson and Jeremy Kyle, the TV presenter best known for his caustic day-time show.

Jeremy Kyle

Racing fan: Jeremy Kyle

Kyle is a big racing fan - he was at Kempton on Boxing Day - and owner with an involvement in Highclere Thoroughbreds.

The standard sign-off to his shows - usually dealing with a disputed parentage or infidelity - is the revealing of the results of a Lie Detector test.

They'll be a few present at the Lesters hoping he leaves that particular piece of equipment at home.

Fame is a very fragile thing. We were reminded that again on December 27 at Kempton, 24 hours after Kauto Star's historic fourth consecutive win in the King George VI Chase.

With the second day of the Christmas Festival drawing to a close, the Kempton PA announcer was trying to draw customers to the Kauto Star memorabilia stand with promises of hefty discounts.


Suggestions that William Hill, sponsors of the King George Festival, may be about to chage their name to simply Hills, are at least premature. But discussions have taken place, I understand.

Problems with the ability of overseas punters to pronounce the double L in William, make the shortened version a favourite for the wider expansion of the company in Europe.


Chepstow deserve some congratulations for their presentation of the Welsh National meeting, which drew particular praise from my Racemail colleague Peter Scudamore.

They infused the meeting with a nationalistic fervour and also introduced a new innovation which opens up fresh possibilities for racing in the 21st century - a text vote from racegoers to select the best turned out runner in the first race.

Welsh National

Smashing day: the Welsh National provided a fine spectacle at Chepstow this week

The weather was atrocious for Newbury's meeting on Tuesday which undoubtedly hit the crowd for what was a great day's sport.

It also meant a low-key start to the new all-inclusive ticket the track are now offering - an idea The Captain wholeheartedly backs.

For £30, racegoers could by a entry ticket (value £22) with a racecard (£2.50) and £12 worth of tote betting vouchers - a total value of £36.

The track sold just under 150 but it will be interesting how well this type of ticket sells on Newbury's better attended days, particularly in the summer.

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