It was quite a surprise to see that the President of the United States felt so strongly about the amended result of the Kentucky Derby that he chose to tweet about it. As is often the case when Donald Trump tweets there were feathers ruffled and spirited replies. OK, granted, plenty of them were regarding the misspelling of Kentucky in the original tweet but imagine the extra exposure the race got when a twitter account with over 60 million followers gets involved?
It’s hard to imagine Theresa May tweeting her 836k twitter devotees on the outcome of a horse race but I’m guessing she has enough on her hands with Brexit as present. Sadly, hardly any other MPs would either for that matter. It’s not been since the late Robin Cook that there has been a high-profile supporter of the sport in the House of Commons and he’s sadly missed.
Just in case there are racing-loving MP’s out there that I just don’t know about I did a bit of Googling. I was very pleased to find an article relating a humorous spat that I missed it first time around in 2018. Apparently, Derby North MP Chris Williamson threatened to whip Philip Davies, Conservative MP for Shipley, with an air-cushioned racing whip ‘To see if it hurts’, during a debate during on setting up a new independent body for the protection of racehorses, in Westminster Hall. Mr Davies was adamant it wouldn’t, I couldn’t find out if the whipping challenge actually took place but it sounds as if racing has a champion in Philip Davies.
Original article here https://www.derbytelegraph.co.uk/news/derby-news/derby-north-mp-chris-williamson-2113534
It’s fair assumption that the same can’t be said for Chris Williamson, once touted as a potential Labour Party leader. If the ‘Whipping Challenge’ didn’t happen, maybe the debate between the two could be reignited, with the racing version of 50 shades taking place between races at a major meeting, televised of course.
It’s all good exposure?
Simon Nott is author of:
Skint Mob! Tales from the Betting Ring