Monday, 14 September 2020

September 2020 Meeting

This was our first Christ Church Hall meeting since the lockdown in March and duly complying with all rules and instructions the Nutfield Wine Club was extremely pleased to be able to gather for our Race Night. Val welcomed members and one guest who were all suitably spaced with the hand sanitiser readily available. Kent had kindly organised this, with help from Graham and Caroline who had provided the projector.

There were 8 races and each race had 8 runners. At the start of each race the list of runners and each horse’s racing odds was shown, from which we all had to make educated guesses who would come first, second or third. Points were awarded as follows for placing the horses in the correct order, 1st – 3 points, 2nd – 2 points and 3rd – 1 point.

So, under Starters Orders we were off with the first race, the Pantomime Chase. This included runners entitled Fee Fi Fo Fum, He’s Behind You and Oh No He’s Not!! However, the winners for this race were Aladdin’s Lamp, Idle Jack with Twanky’s Widow coming in third. Further races were Old MacDonald’s Farm Handicap (with runners including WoofWoof, BaaBaa and MooMoo), The Villains Dash (Lord Sauron, Professor Moriarty and Count Olaf) and the Pasta Memorial Chase (Linguini, Fusilli and Cannelloni).

However, halfway through, Graham H. suggested a new way of scoring. Instead of awarding 3, 2 and 1 point for each correctly placed horse, the points would be based on the betting odds of the horses, so a horse coming first with odds of say 7 – 1, instead of just 3, the total would be 21 points (7 x 3), a horse coming in second with odds of 25 – 1 the total would be 50 (25 x 2), etc., etc. After 4 races, the leader with 11 points was Ian, but with this change of scoring, Angela picked a rank outsider at 33 -1 (Linguini in the Pasta Memorial Chase) and scored a winning 99 points!! No-one else could catch her!!! Pam came second with 80 and Graham B followed with 37 points. Francis picked all the right horses in race 3 and Chris selected all the right horses in 2 races but in the wrong order. Bad luck Chris.

Many thanks to Kent, Graham and Caroline for a very entertaining evening and to Francis for ensuring that all correct procedures were adhered to.

Our October meeting will be on Tuesday, 6th October, when we will be having a wine tasting evening with guest speaker, Max Conrad who is a Buyer for Sainsburys.

August 2020 Meeting

This was our first get together since the lockdown in March (apart from the occasional Zoom meetings). The day was overcast with a touch of damp in the air but, nevertheless, nine members and a guest duly met up at Lullingstone Castle in Kent. (Saturday, 15th August). 

Due to Covid 19, the Castle was not open to the public but the beautiful World Garden was. Just as a bit of background, the Castle is set in 120 acres of the Kent countryside and is one of England’s oldest family estates, dating back to Domesday times.

The World Garden of Plants, to give it its full name, is the brainchild of Tom Hart Dyke. His aim is “to show where the plants we grow today actually originate from”. The garden is divided up into regions starting with the UK and Ireland, Mainland Europe, Asia, Australasia, Africa, North America, Mexico and South America and contains 8,000 plant species, cultivars and hybrids which are planted in their respective countries of origin. A beautiful Jersey Tiger Moth made an appearance and Ian was able to take a wonderful photo. In case you are wondering, the Moth has landed on a giant model globe of the world, just off the coast of Africa, right in the Atlantic Ocean!!

After our picnics it was time to move on to the Roman Villa for those who had booked tickets. This is run by English Heritage and is an outstanding example of a Roman villa-house that once lay at the heart of a large estate. It was built around AD 100 and was occupied for more than 300 years by a succession of rich owners. Over the years the Villa was expanded to include a bath suite, underfloor heating and, eventually, a luxurious dining room with fine mosaics.

It was a very interesting and enjoyable day, with the sun making a late appearance. Unfortunately no wine was imbibed in the making of this outing!!!

Jersey Tiger Moth