Almost A Career First

Last Saturday I came close to realizing a long held ambition.
After 33 years of race calling, I nearly got my number one commentating wish……a triple deadheat.
As the field for the Feilding Gold Cup flashed across the line, everyone, including yours truely,started guessing which horse had won.
The three main protagonists were Jeu De Cartes, Savvy Dancer and Spiro.
The three horses had staged a titanic home stretch battle and went to the line locked together.
One stride off the post  I thought Jeu De Cartes would win from Spiro and Savvy Dancer.
 However right on the line, both Spiro and Savvy Dancer lunged at Jeu De Cartes to throw everyone into utter confusion.
My initial reaction was Jeu De Cartes had held on by the narrowest of margins from Spiro, with Savvy Dancer close up.
Then after watching the slow motion replay, I thought Spiro may have got in the deciding stride.
Compounding matters was the fact that while Jeu De Cartes was near the inner, both Savvy Dancer and Spiro were lodging their claims out wide.
It was very hard to “line” them up.
You can imagine my dismay then when race day Judge Dick Hunt provisionally called in Savvy Dancer as the winner from Spiro and Jeu De Cartes.
The vastly experienced Hunt did stress though, it was very close.
“This could go any which way ” Hunt told the on course crowd.
Several minutes of perusing the photo finish went by, before Hunt declared his official result.
“Dead heat for first between Jeu De Cartes and Savvy Dancer and a nose away in third spot to Spiro” declared Hunt.
I spoke to Hunt about the closeness of the finish and he too couldn’t remember a closer finish.
“With modern technology the way it is, you can get break down the margins to one pixel…..there are fewer dead heats nowadays ” said Hunt
I spoke to Noel Harris, the rider of Savvy Dancer, and his reaction probably summed up the situation.
Harris thought he had won it.
“Mind you, I was only aware of Spiro on my outside…….I had no idea Jeu De Cartes was as close as it was, to us” said Harris.
However, there was even more drama to be played out.
I will try to explain in layman’s term what went on, but please remember I am basically computer illiterate, so it might be difficult to.
After the official result was declared, Trackside showed a photo finish of the race.
It was the photo taken from the inside camera, that is, the “temporary” camera which is set up to assist the race day Judge.
The Judge also has the “permanent” side on  camera at his disposal. 
The difficulty with the “temporary” camera is it is not hard wired, meaning it is susceptible to any  air wave “intereference”.
The permanent camera is hard wired so there is no interference to it.
The photo Trackside showed, seemed to have Jeu De Cartes clearly behind Savvy Dancer and Spiro.
That was the “interference” at work.
It distorted the photo.
Sure enough, the “experts” on the internet websites were quickly making their conspiracy theories known to all and sundry.
Even an explaination  from stipendiary steward Ross Neal couldn’t quell their suspicious minds.  
Anyway, I saw the photos judge Dick Hunt had to make his decision, and he made the right call.
Of that,  I have no doubt.
Maybe next time Trackside will help by not showing those photos from the “temporary ” cameras.
Would save a lot of angst….I kid you not!
 
Catch you next week.
 
Cheers
 
George.