Les Bridge was in Melbourne when he received the news that Tip Top had got away during afternoon exercise, sustaining a nasty injury to a front superficial flexor tendon. It was mid October 2015, and the horse had finished third in a Kembla Maiden at his initial start, only a few days before.
How often have you heard hackneyed clichés like “this is unbeatable” or “this is a good thing”, being bandied about at the track or the TAB outlet. We can’t include Winx or Black Caviar in this exercise, but I’m referring to horses who look near certainties, provided everything goes right in the run. One sprang instantly to mind, and that was an imported English horse called Marooned in 1986.
Most race callers are so intent on getting the job done accurately, they wouldn’t give a thought to throwing in a funny line. That kind of commentary wouldn’t have suited the late Bert Bryant, who died in 1991 following several years of indifferent health. Bert believed that punters having a bad day, needed some cheering up, and he set about developing an array of “one liners” designed to take the pain out of losing your money.