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Mince Pie for Starters

John Oaksey

6 Reviews

Rated 0

Biography: sport, Prose: non-fiction

One of racing's great characters recalls his life in the sport in a brilliantly entertaining memoir

John Oaksey has seen it all in racing, as a jockey, commentator and newspaper reporter. After a lifetime devoted to the sport he recalls the splendid characters, horses and races that have made horseracing the great passion of his life, a passion that he is so brilliantly able to convey to others. One of the most respected and loved people in the sport, partly due to his work with the Injured Jockeys' Fund, John Oaksey has a fund of fascinating and hilarious stories to tell. This book is not just a wonderful self-portrait, it is also a definitive account of racing since the war.

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Praise for Mince Pie for Starters

  • Fantastic news for anyone who has even a passing interest in horses and horseracing ... [a] very enjoyable book - J.A.McGrath, Daily Telegraph

  • Hilarious anecdotes ... Oaksey is a gripping storyteller. Not only is this one of the best racing books that has ever been written but it also reveals an honest and generous character - Chris Goulding, Sunday Express

  • John Oaksey is the archetypal English gentleman. He is a sweetheart, a star, the bravest of the brave, funny and kind...I loved this charming book: old fashioned the standards may be, modest to an almost ridiculous degree the style, but shining through it all is a man in love with life, with sport, tradition and competition. How lucky the sport of racing has been to have him as its leading writer and advocate for so many years - Stoker Hartington, Spectator

  • [a] delightful and often hilarious autobiography...splendid memoir - Country Life

  • The imperative read for racing fans this Christmas - Chris McGrath, The Times

  • One of the most remarkable feats of sportswriting I have witnessed was by a mud-splattered jockey who had just been narrowly beaten in the 1963 Grand National. Within minutes he was crouched in a noisy, sweltering, overcrowded Press room penning 1,200 words on the emotions of losing in the last few yards to a 66-1 outsider, Ayala, to catch the first edition of a Sunday newspaper. If I have ever seen ultimate professionalism that was it - Ian Wooldridge, Daily Mail

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John Oaksey

John Oaksey began his racing career in 1955 and went on to ride more than 200 winners until 1975, including the Whitbread Gold Cup. He has written for the Daily Telegraph since 1957 and has been a TV presenter since 1970, first on ITV then on Channel 4. He was a founder trustee of the Injured Jockeys Fund in 1964.

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