Posts tagged ‘racing’

Noble Eagle

Pramod Belose is a little man. and he had no idea, atleast until then, that he would remember this day for the rest of his life. it was a lazy sunday afternoon in Mumbai. when most of the people were busy doing nothing on that warm afternoon, there was a buzz of activities going on at the fag end of the city. at this part of the world it was a festival of colors. the beautiful ladies, more outrageous than the others, flocking thru the lush green outfield. so much so that even the would be stars of this busy afternoon, Equus caballus, moved anxiously at the paddock. if you happened to pass by the Mahalaxmi Layout that afternoon you could easily do a mistake by assuming that there is a cricket match going on . the roar of 40,000 strong crowd would definitely deafen your ears. it was Indian Derby. for those of you who never heard of the term, it is indeed one of the most prestigious and elite event that happens in this country from the ages. the royal sport, on this day, truly gets a face-lift from the infamy and stigma thats been attached to it thesedays. the clock was about to struck 4:30. the runners and riders, amidst the huge whistling and cheers, moved to the starting gates. when i talk about the runners,they were the best of the bests from the stables of the most elite families in the country. the likes of beer baron Mallya, the numero uno of the ghazals, Jagjeet Singh and many. the riders, too, were from the different parts of the world and among the most famous of the racing world. and belose, the lesser mortal, just a local jockey, were taking instructions from his trainer. he wouldnt be a part of the glory anyway as he was only supposed to set the pace and eventually would make a safer place in the finish for his fancied stablemate ridden by a legendary english jockey. belose and Noble Eagle, his mount, would therefore fade into an oblivion whose effort will be soon forgotten. Nothing wrong in it and Belose would collect a mere Rs 600 at the end of the day as that is the only worth of his sweat…so, belose did exactly what he was told to do. when the flag came down for this one and half a mile trip, Belose atop Noble Eagle took a front seat while the prime contenders settled for a waiting game. being a such a long trip they must make their bid at the straight to overtake from the pacesetters who would be, by then,out of their gas and soon fell behind.

As they came into the final stretch, with Noble Eagle still ahead of the rest and apparently slowing down, the riders at the rear alerted their mounts for the final assault and started to close down the gap with the front runners. an overwhelming excitemnt loomed large on the stands as the crowd prepared for an exciting finish. but something happened here. Noble Eagle, with a few crack of the whalebone, sprung into a new life. Despite the fact that there was no cheers for him from the crowd, he kept going at his own self. Belose, clearly puzzled, started looking back feverishly…. he was not suppsed to be here!! he couldnt believe his eyes as his horse touched the line of glory…

Belose cried loud and kissed his horse as a sudden silence came down heavily among the crowd. Not a single soul could believe what happened. Noble Eagle, would probably never know that he had made the biggest upset in the history of indian derby. To confirm the fact, i must tell you that a mere betting of 10 bucks on the horse would have fetched you a unbelievable 1276 bucks!! Though i would be never sure that how many had the faith on him but there is no doubt that i have never witnessed such a thrilling moment ever in my life and probaly never will….

and for Belose, life will never be same again….

February 19, 2005 at 2:07 pm 1 comment


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