Market Rasen and horse racing go together, and one local man has completed a long held ambition.
Rasen racing enthusiast Stuart Hogg has travelled up hill and down dale to fulfil his goal to go racing at every course in the country, 60 in total.
It took the 69-year-old 43 years, beginning with Kempton in 1970, but he finally made it at the last flat meeting this year at Ripon. Stuart celebrated by sponsoring a race – the ‘Carol Hogg and Andrew Dickins Congratulatory Apprentice Selling Stakes’ won by four-year-old gelding ‘Shamrocked’ under jockey Jacob Butterfield.
“It was a great day. Friends came along to join me and we collected £372 for the Injured Jockeys Fund,” said Stuart.
The Injured Jockey’s Fund is a charity close to Stuart’s heart and he intends to raise more money towards the appeal in 2014 and fulfil a more lofty ambition.
He added: “I got interested in racing years ago when I lived in Scotland. Now I plan to return there to climb Ben Nevis, the highest mountain in Britain, when I am 70 next year to raise money for Diabetes UK and the Injured Jockeys Fund, that will be another challenge and more of a physical one.”
Of the 60 racecourses Stuart visited, 17 have a golf course within the racecourse perimeter, like the popular nine hole par 32 course at Market Rasen. So Stuart got out his clubs and played a round at each course as well.
“My first racecourse golf course round was at Ludlow, a nice course both for horses and golfers.”
Sadly two of Stuart’s much loved racecourses have closed since his collection began, Hereford and Folkestone. But then there are still 58 to go at for any more residents of our local racecourse town who want to follow in Stuart’s footsteps.