Thu | Dec 13, 2018

Gordon Robinson | Going on a summer holiday

Published:Tuesday | May 15, 2018 | 12:00 AM
Argentina soccer star Lionel Messi is expected to come big at the World Cup.

Summertime is almost here and The Terrible Tout has declared June a public holimonth.

We're all going on a summer holiday

No more working for a week or two

Fun and laughter on our summer holiday

No more worries for me or you

for a week or two

This summer, sports fans will experience mouth-watering fare beginning with the world's greatest horse racing festival at Royal Ascot. Every third week in June (Tuesday to Saturday), Europe's best contest the most prestigious all-age horse racing available. These days, invaders from USA are regular features, with adventurous American trainer Wesley Ward leading the way. Recently, Australian sprinters also have excellent records there, so it has become akin to an extended global turf championship.

There's a Jamaican connection as former champion sire, Zaleucus, won the 1964 renewal of the Royal Hunt Cup, the festival's most popular big handicap race, before being imported to stand at Orange Valley, managed by legendary breeder Calvin O'Sullivan. Zaleucus, sired Derby winners Reprieve (out of that prolific mare, Caroline Park, for illustrious owners James W. 'Judge' Hardie and Dr Victor Magnus); and Zell (out of Bright Star), as well as multiple Grade 1 winners, including top-class Arizona (out of Fair Sky), often a bridesmaid for the great Legal Light, including in the 1977 Derby; brilliant sprinters Mercury (out of Stereo) and Tachyon (out of All The Way); and Percy Martin's pride and joy, Deep River (out of Lulubelle).

We're going where the sun shines brightly.

We're going where the sea is blue.

We've seen it in the movies.

Now let's see if it's true

Actually, most of us won't be able to test that climatic (not necessarily climactic) theory this summer as we'll be travelling, perhaps virtually, to Russia's cold climes, where, on June 14, football's World Cup kicks off. Government can expect a severe GDP drop while the world's top 32 teams vie for the FIFA World Cup Trophy, which replaced the Jules Rimet Trophy stolen in 1983 and never recovered. It's ironic, considering the venue, that USA failed to make the World Cup finals for the first time since 1986. USA's participation could have engendered awkwardness considering recent political events.

 

POOR RECORDS

 

I spoke with well-known sports betting guru The Terrible Tout, who advises that South American teams have poor World Cup records in Europe; Spain is in political turmoil; and he just can't bring himself to support Germany, so this could be the moment England breaks a 50-plus-year drought and takes home the trophy. He expects Harry Kane to become only the second Englishman to win the Golden Boot after fellow Tottenham Hotspur (also Barcelona, Everton, and Leicester City) striker Gary Lineker in 1986. Surprises can come from Egypt (led by Mohamed Salah) and Denmark (rely heavily on Christian Eriksen but gifted a great draw beside Australia and Peru), who have the goal-scoring potential essential to this tournament.

Everybody has a summer holiday;

Doing things they always wanted to;

So we're going on a summer holiday

To make our dreams come true

for me and you.

Summer Holiday, recorded in January 1963 by Cliff Richard with his band The Shadows, for the February 1963 movie of the same name, was one of the few songs for that soundtrack NOT written by Peter Myers (no relation to Jamaica's schoolboy chess guru) and Ronald Cass. This monster hit was written by the band's rhythm guitarist Bruce Welch and drummer Brian Bennett. It reached number one in the UK for three weeks before being toppled (for a week) by The Shadows' instrumental Foot Tapper (also from the movie) before recapturing the top spot for another week. Summer Holiday was one of six hits Richard performed at his spontaneous gig at Wimbledon in 1996 during a rain delay.

My summer holiday to prepare for, then enjoy the sporting smorgasbord on tap begins now.

Peace and love.

- Gordon Robinson is an attorney-at-law. Email feedback to columns@gleanerjm.com.