I watch a YouTube channel called Dry Creek Wrangler. Dwayne is a horse man but most of his subscribers are interested in his words of wisdom.

He’s an old sage. The kind of man you would like to sit down by a camp fire, and just chat about life.

This week’s video is titled: Do not go gentle…

Do you have a sense of adventure?

Even if it terrifies you.

It keeps you alive.

He says: ‘A rut is just a grave with the ends kicked out!’

You don’t want to sit in your chair and think about the last five years of your life reflecting why you quit doing something because you lost your sense of adventure.

Don’t let concerns deter you.

It’s so easy to let the old man in you quit and realise you lived those final years with regret. Get out of your comfort zone. A gambling adventure doesn’t mean you have to be like a crazy man who sold his gold teeth. Plan to do something that tests you. Go somewhere different. Don’t lose that sense of adventure. Don’t live a half life. Go to the races, stop, look around and enjoy the moment. You were given a life to live. Don’t quit living. Get that money out of your pocket and put it down and get your heart jumping again. You don’t know what’s going to happen. Feel alive and you will feel a whole lot better. After you’ve been to the races, go to the casino. Go have a few drinks and enjoy the adventure. Too many people are sitting doing nothing. Waiting for nothing. Hoping for nothing. It doesn’t have to be that way.

Tomorrow could be the best day of your life.

But it means you may have to step out of your comfort zone. For some people it is just about poking your head outside the front door.

What’s around the next corner?

Whose around the next corner?

Where is the next corner?

The most amazing things happen when you take a chance.

Dwayne never thought he would get 1000 YouTube subscribers let alone 870,000. He never thought he would have a successful riding school. He never imagined Penguin Random House would contact him to write a book. But most of all, he never thought his words would inspire others to change their life, find strength in times of difficulty or open their eyes to the greatest adventures.

Find some adventure…

Take a gamble on life.

A Day at Fakenham Races  The National Hunt isn’t one of my favourite codes of racing. In fact, beyond the odd venture to Huntingdon, heading to Norfolk, one of two tracks in the county, the other one being on the North Sea coast at Great Yarmouth, I’m a complete novice to steeplechases, hurdles and flat races.

I was looking forward to going to Fakenham.

I was invited by my cousin, Danny, and a small group of friends including, Kevin, Dave Smith and Buster. The journey by car took us from our home town of March, Cambridgeshire to Fakenham via the A47. The trip took just over an hour.

We arrived about an hour before the start of racing to a very rural location with a crowd that looked like they come off the farm with associated apparel and army of Wellington boots. I was struck by how cold it was. In fact, it was freezing cold. The course allowed dogs on leads and I saw a greyhound that couldn’t stop shivering.

Thinking about the date of this meeting it was many years back in 2015, the final season of jockey A.P. McCoy. He was there racing that day and there was a buzz around the course. The man himself was enjoying the moment with racegoers taking photos while others got their racecard signed.

Fakenham has 11 fixtures each season.

The Grandstand & Paddock admission from £15 – £20 (booking online in advance is cheapest) and affordable. For that you get:

  • Access to the Grandstand viewing area

  • View of all the parade ring

  • Bookmakers

  • Tote facilities

  • Food outlets

  • Trade stands

  • Licensed bar

  • Britbet Betting Shop

The course is left-handed and almost square in shape and a circuit of about one mile. The steeplechase course is on the outside of the hurdle course and six hurdles per circuit with an open ditch as the penultimate obstacle.

The first meeting at Fakenham took place in 1905 attracting 37 runners. However, in 1926 hurdle races were introduced as the number of steeplechases dwindled.

In 1965 with fears that Fakenham may be closed, the formation of Fakenham Racecourse Ltd led to the qualification of funding from the Levy Board. In addition, part of the racecourse was leased for sports facilities including a golf course.

I can’t remember the horses that run on my visit to Fakenham or whether I placed a bet but I do remember enjoying a great day with good company. I guess I’m not alone with that opinion considering it has received royal patronage from King Edward VII to King Charles III who become patron of the course in 2000. In fact, the 1 million pound members’ stand is named ‘The Prince of Wales Stand’.

It was soon time to go home but not before going into the old Long Bar (which has now been replaced by The Adrian Flux Bar) as much to warm up as have a pint of beer.

Soon after the last race, we made our way to the car and back home.

It was the first and last time I went to Fakenham races but I would like to go again. Even on the coldest day it has a warm feel about the place and there is something truly beautiful about this little course.

I didn’t get the autograph of A P McCoy but I saw the joy of a crowd who witnessed a racing legend.

As John McCririck used to say: ‘Go racing!’

How right he was.

Doctor, Doctor: At The Races  Is there a doctor in the house?

No, he’s at Fakenham racecourse doing his job on a cold, winter’s day.

You may have been to a racecourse meeting, watching the horses walk around the paddock, owners and trainers chatting with excitement about the race to come, and mingled in the crowd is someone with a medical bag, observing all and sundry, especially the jockeys.

You notice someone with an armband which details Doctor!

It’s no surprise to find a doctor is an important part of proceedings, in fact the meeting wouldn’t even go ahead if the medical provisions weren’t in place.

In fact, it is a legal requirement for at least one ambulance, doctor and vet to be on course at all times in case there is an injury to jockey or spectator. As a business, it would be a requirement to cover public liability with health and safety measures.

But what is the role of a doctor at the racecourse?

The doctor oversees the medical facilities ensuring the racecourse is properly equipped so staff can handle injuries and emergencies. These must comply with racing regulation set out by the British Horse Racing Authority (BHA) and other relevant bodies.

It is important that lines of communication are clear with racing officials, trainers, jockeys and stakeholders to ensure the safety and well-being of everyone involved.

The major roles of the doctor include:

  • Emergency response to administer immediate first aid and stabilise injured individuals and make decision whether to transport an injured person to hospital.

  • Pre-race assessment of jockeys to ensure they are fit to ride and check injuries or illness that could affect their safety.

  • The doctor may be involved in the collection of blood or urine samples regarding drug testing (also alcohol) to ensure participants adhere to the rules and regulations of the sport.

  • If injuries occur concussion protocols are in place to determine if a jockey is fit to continue racing.

  • In addition, the doctor may need attend injuries or illness of spectators.

  • The doctor has to liaise with other medical professionals such as paramedics, nurses to provide comprehensive medical care and swift response to emergencies.

The role of the doctor at British horse racing fixtures is crucial for the safety of everyone whether jockey or member of the public. They often go unnoticed but play an important role in the health and safety, ready to respond instantly and with professionalism.