Simon Cooper

Simon Cooper

I must admit I never thought I would write one book let alone three so I’m both excited and amazed in equal measure at the publication of Frankel. For those who know me through my work on the chalkstreams and nature writings a book about a racehorse might seem an odd departure but it tells you something more about my life when I actually had a proper ‘job’ and when fly fishing was simply my hobby. As a teenager I was obsessed by horseracing; I was always rubbish at riding but racing fascinated me. Fortunately I came from a family who shared the passion. My grandfather had owned a racecourse. My grandmother encouraged an interest in betting on the grounds that it would help my maths. My father had ridden in point-to-points. The best family trips were days to the races. My summer job was as a stable hand in a local racing yard. But education got in the way until, with a degree to my name, I did what I wanted to always do – become a bookie. It was ten great years until the call of the wild got me. So Frankel is something of a return to my roots. Like millions I watched in awe as this extraordinary racehorse scorched away all those in his path to become the greatest equine athlete of all time. I have met him. Patted him. Observed his foibles. Chatted in that way that people do to horses. And then retraced every step of his life from birth to his current home at Banstead Manor Stud in Suffolk. He is an extraordinary horse who did extraordinary things. I hope you enjoy reading my tale of his life and the people that made him what he is.
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