Interview: JIM McGRATH: Jim McGrath, also known as “The Sage of Halifax” is one of Britain’s most well-known racing pundits and broadcasters. Turning away from the ambition of being a jockey after a summer at Bill Marshall’s yard – where he was advised that he wouldn’t make the grade – McGrath left school and joined Timeform in 1974 with an entry level position, where he would quickly make his way up the ranks. After five years at Timeform he became a racecourse reporter, and in 2000 he would go onto become managing director and then it’s chairman. McGrath joined Channel 4 Racing as a pundit when it launched in 1984 and would be an integral part of their coverage until December 2016. McGrath has also had success as an owner and breeder, including the 14 time winner Decorated Hero, best known for being one of Frankie Dettori’s magnificent seven at Ascot in 1996. Meeting Jim McGrath with Hannah Baycroft.
JIM McGRATH (part 1 of 3)
Jim talks about how he broke into the racing industry and recalls his opening job at Timeform. Jim also talks us through the methods behind Timeform’s ratings and how they apply in different situations.
JIM McGRATH (part 2 of 3)
Jim talks about breeding and what is taken into consideration when breeders search for the next champion, how crucial pedigrees can be and the process of how a horse is given its rating. Jim also explains how a WFD and WFA chart works.
JIM McGRATH (part 3 of 3)
Jim tells us what advice he would give to someone who is a first-time punter, both for fun and professionally, and tells us why he doesn’t give tips. Jim also tells us about how to apply for a job at Timeform, what his favourite part of his job has been and lastly, his experience as a breeder and racehorse owner.