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Bolt Steals Majorca Thunder

Klawervlei deserve a refund

John Freeman

John Freeman – critical of Bolt arrival

Leading Bloodstock Consultant John Freeman writes in his latest eNews that as much as he thought the arrival of Usain Bolt on course on Sun Met day was a brilliant idea, it was very badly executed.

Right in the middle of the presentation of the trophies for Gr1 Klawervlei Majorca Stakes all hell broke loose on the winners rostrum.

This helicopter came overhead with dust and dead grass flying in every direction. Ladies clutching at their dresses, hair and hats. No-one could hear what was being said on the podium so they stopped. Before the owners were presented with their trophies, all of the happy connections of the winning filly were unceremoniously asked to leave the stage to make way for Mr Bolt. The trophies were not presented and we got no pics taken. What!!!

The Klawervlei banners on the podium were being removed even before the helicopter landed. The wind from the rotor blades almost toppled that background banner wall onto the podium but for the effort of four chaps clinging to it.

So a publicity stunt by one sponsor is more important than the people who just won a Gr1 race! I also felt badly for the sponsor of the Majorca Stakes, Klawervlei (I doubt they will complain so I will do it for them).

I think they deserve a refund.

How can one sponsor steal the limelight from another an deprive those that are entitled to celebrate their moment of joy?

How does the Longines CNN Winning Post introduction on TV go, something like; “countless hours training, hundreds of days on the track, years of sacrifice, centuries of tradition, millions invested, for a race that lasts minutes, and a chance at glory” to which one should add “for a few seconds on a podium to celebrate” and then along came a Bolt to steal your thunder.

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7 comments on “Bolt Steals Majorca Thunder

  1. Fran says:

    Well said John, totally agree and much as I admire Bolt and his achievements, the day should be about HORSE RACING! Not Olympic athletes or DJ’s or bands. I feel for Klawervlei, they contribute so so much to our sport and to be treated like that is a disgrace.

  2. Richard Adcock says:

    Agree entirely other than the statement that it was a ‘brilliant idea’. The Met is one of the biggest race days of the year, which is a special event for all racing people, whatever their level of involvement. Was Usain Bolt not an unnecessary sideshow of no real interest to the majority of the racing fraternity for whom Met day is big enough in its own right.

  3. Chris Swart says:

    To the purist Dettori (again) would have been a bigger draw card and they probably weren’t aware of his engagements at the Pegasus.

    It’s a day of racing celebration and I was gobsmacked to hear the presentation come up with “let’s hurry this up because here comes Bolt.”

    Unless he spent a week mentoring and motivating kids on the flats and locations then that money was a total waste.

    I understand John’s frustration from his association but these reservations should have been raised when the fanfare and celebrity announcements were being churned relentlessly out on the media organs.

    Only one voice was heard but that’s banned in the organ grinder’s assistant’s outlets

  4. Phillip Lamport says:

    I felt the whole idea of Mr Bolt ended up a wet fish. I very seldon saw him smile , he seemed to be more occupied with his cell phone. On the flip side today he attended a training session with Mamelodi Sundowns where he played a soccer game with the team. He totally looked at differnet person with smiles , jokes etc .

    Maybe horse racing is not for him or he felt out of place . Seeing that attendance was down on previous years , makes one wonder if the Sponsors got value for money , as he openly joked today that his visit has been fantastic the only negative was that Capee Town had no water.

    Many more would have watched him if he lined up on an athletics track lining up for a 100m sprint. I hope the Oppeators and Sponsors learn from this and have a different approach next year . On the Equine side what a day , close finishes , history made, just perfect all around.

    1. Philip Goldberg says:

      Well said sir.
      Thanks for the update on the soccer field.
      Obviously more comfortable there.
      Nice to hear.

  5. Raynet says:

    I am a Bolt fan but this was nothing special. I would have been more excited if they flew out both Mary Decker and Zola Bud, and let them have a lap together. It is also soft lush grass in case one of them had to fall.

  6. Clinton says:

    Well said Mr Freedman
    Better planning needed

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