Wednesday, November 04, 2015

Michelle and Stevie Payne - a truly remarkable Melbourne Cup

It's hard not to go past the Melbourne Cup. It was a complete fairy tale that had absolutely everything.

I almost didn't watch. the Cup. I have drifted away during the years when I worked so much alone. The Cup is a thing to be shared. This year a friend put me in her work sweep. I watched. So glad I did.

This was a total fairy tale combining elements that, in total, would be regarded as totally implausible in normal circumstances.

Big racing family, early death of mother, triumph in the midst of hard luck, down syndrome brother, horse rank outsider. first female jockey to win, pretty and articulate, question of whether or not she should ride, woman backed by men and family who believed in her made it possible, earlier life threatening injuries, a total fairy tale package. A story that combines just so many things. I had tears in my eyes.

I really don't know how one could combine so many things in fiction. No one would believe you. Take Stevie Payne, obviously loved and loving whose simple enjoyment in the success of his horse and sister shone through the coverage. This was his triumph as much as hers. I felt so pleased for him. Or the joy of the Payne family members present. For a moment, the industry that is modern racing was totally personalised.

Yes, the world will move on. But we are all better for yesterday's  Cup.  

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