Friday, 25 September 2009
Frankie Dettori strikes gold at Ayr Racecourse
By: Iain Ferguson
A THUNDEROUS roar echoed around Ayr Racecourse on Saturday as Frankie Dettori performed his famous flying dismount from Jimmy Styles after landing the William Hill (Ayr) Gold Cup.
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Racing’s undisputed king had struck gold onboard the 14/1 shot and oh how he loved it. He yelped in delight, punched the air and ran from the winners enclosure to the weighing room waving his riding hat above his head.
The crowd loved it, television viewers loved it and as the sun lit up the Craigie track it was a moment you were proud to admit ‘I was there’.
The 2009 William Hill (Ayr) Gold Cup will go down in history as Frankie’s Day and 12,500 racegoers were happy to share it with the Italian.
As stories go this was a fairy tale. Frankie had never won the race despite having ridden in it many times. His horse had been crying out for fast ground and a week earlier that looked a forlorn hope but everything clicked on the day.
Jimmy Styles hit the front inside the final furlong and held on to deny Barney McGrew (20/1) and jockey Tom Eaves by a head with Knot In Wood (11/1), the mount of Barry McHugh, third and Evens And Odds (Adrian Nicholls) fourth.
Frankie milked the moment and said : “This is a race I have dreamed of winning since I was in short trousers. Its very special to me I have been coming here for many years and I have written my name into the record books of this great race.”
Trainer Clive Cox was also a very happy man after being involved in controversy over the public draw for the race. His representative lost the connection to the trainer’s phone and as a result their request for stall 19 was refused because they’d exceeded the minute allowed to them. Jimmy Styles was put in the last available stall – number 15 and went on to win.
Clive admitted : “With the low numbers doing best it was easier to get over to the far side from 15 than 19 so at the end of the day its worked out well.”
Frankie went on to complete a big race double when the Saeed Bin Suroor trained Prince Siegfried (11/8 fav) won the williamhill.com Doonside Cup by three and a quarter lengths from Baila Me (7/1).
Trainer of the meeting was undoubtedly Richard Fahey who saddled an incredible eight winners over the three days including Baldemar (18/1) to land the first ever running of the William Hill (Ayr) Bronze Cup and Kaldoun Kingdom (8/1) to win the William Hill (Ayr) Silver Cup. Both were ridden by Barry McHugh who just failed in his quest for the Gold Cup when he rode Knot In Wood to finish third.
The Group 3 Laundry Cottage Stud Firth Of Clyde Stakes went the way of 33/1 shot Distinctive, ridden by Tom Eaves for Brian Smart, who sped clear of Midnight Martini (12/1) inside the final furlong to win comfortably.
Other notable winners over the three days included Mister Manannan (15/8 fav) for the David Nicholls – Adrian Nicholls partnership in Friday’s Mac Asphalt Harry Roseberry Stakes; Centigrade (3/1 fav) in the Nigel Angus Memorial Nursery Handicap under Hayley Turner and Demolotion (9/1) in the williamhill.com/bonus25 Handicap for the Kilkerran Cup which was trained by Noel Wilson and ridden by Gary Bartley.
Ayr next races on Thursday 1 October with the first race at 2.20pm.
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Thursday, 24 September 2009
Thousands flock to Ayr Racecourse for weekend fun
By: Iain Ferguson
SUN and fun – just two of the ingredients that combined to make the 2009 William Hill (Ayr) Gold Cup Festival at Ayr Racecourse one of the best in living memory.
Crowds exceeded expectations, with more than 21,000 attending over the three days and 12,500 packing the course on Saturday.
And everyone voted the Festival an outstanding success. One racegoer John Robinson, a Newcastle businessman, commented: “I race all over – York, Doncaster, Ascot and Longchamp. Ayr is exceptional, and the staff are wonderful.”
One lady who certainly had an unforgettable experience at the track was London girl Alex Wilson. Marketing manager of Investec, who were sponsoring a race on Friday, Alex landed a bronze coin as one of the Best Dressed Ladies and went on to draw the winning horse in the William Hill (Ayr) Bronze Cup – Baldemar.
A stunned and delighted Alex was presented with her prize - a fabulous Vauxhall Tigra Rouge Special Edition - by Jim Smith, managing director of sponsors Kerr & Smith and Iveco Trucks.
Alex said: “It is unbelievable. It’s my first trip to Ayr races, and I’ve won this fabulous car. I’m so excited – now I’ll have to arrange another visit here to drive my car back home.”
Runner-up was Nicola Healy of Kilmarnock, who won a seven-night cruise courtesy of Stewart Travel and Fred Olsen. Third prize went to Mauchline woman Jillian Wyllie – a piece of jewellery from Alex Cairncross and a spa package for two from Purity Spa at Lochgreen House.
Jim Smith said: “This is our second year of sponsorship, and it has been a great occasion once again. I’m delighted that Alex has won the car – it’s the very last one in the UK, and is a real collectors piece.
“I’m also happy to confirm that I’ll be sponsoring the Ladies Day prize again next year.”
Slater Menswear sponsored the Best Dressed Gent competition, and this was won by Scott Stimson of Ayr who was presented with £300 of Slater vouchers from Ayr Slater Menswear manager Jack Blades.
Around £2 million was pumped into the local economy, with hotel rooms within a 15 mile radius sold out and bars, restaurants and taxi firms also benefiting.
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Wednesday, 23 September 2009
Irvine Bay tells local firms of regeneration benefits
Irvine Bay Regeneration Company has launched a series of events aimed at ensuring local businesses get every chance to benefit from their work in the area. The events are aptly named "Irvine Bay talks business".
Three events are being held in total, each at a different time of day and in three different towns to give local firms the best possible choice of being able to attend.
At the briefings, attendees will be informed of the benefits of the regeneration work, will get information on how businesses can get help with issues, and will explain the company’s procurement processes.
Chief executive Patrick Wiggins (pictured above) said: “The work we are doing is all about creating a prosperous and sustainable Irvine Bay, and we need strong local businesses to do that.
“It is vital that our local firms understand what we are doing, how our work can benefit them, and how can they work with us. These meetings will provide companies in Irvine Bay with an opportunity to engage directly with us.”
The events take place as follows:
* Michael Lynch Centre, Ardrossan, Thursday 8 October, 8.30am till 11am
* Harbour Arts Centre, Irvine, Monday 2 November, 5.30pm till 8pm
* Taylors Hotel, Kilwinning, Wednesday 2 December, 12 noon till 2.30pm
Each event can cater for up to 50 attendees and there will be light refreshments. For further information and to book your place call 0845 60 66 826 or register online at www.registerforevent.co.uk/irvinebaytalksbusiness.
Irvine Bay Regeneration Company
Irvine Bay Regeneration Company seeks to develop and revitalise the five towns of Ardrossan, Saltcoats, Stevenston, Kilwinning and Irvine in North Ayrshire through a £100 million, ten year programme to boost the local economy and make the area an attractive and prosperous place to live, work and to visit. Irvine Bay’s partners are North Ayrshire Council, Scottish Enterprise and the Scottish Government.
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Sunday, 20 September 2009
Glasgow City Parking adopts Visimetrics CCTV solution
City Parking (Glasgow), the LLP parking operation of Glasgow City Council, has adopted a fully integrated IP-based CCTV solution from Visimetrics for the control, management and recording of CCTV images throughout the city’s multi-storey car parks.
The CCTV system upgrade was part of a major refurbishment programme following the transfer of Glasgow City Council’s off-street parking operations to the newly created LLP. The programme’s aim was to improve the efficiency, operation and capability of parking facilities across the city. Central to this aim was bringing the control and operation of all the city council’s parking facilities within one location. With the network capability already in place at head office the Control Room and centralised equipment for parking, intercom, CCTV and Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) were located there.
The integrated IP CCTV solution was specifically developed by Visimetrics to the meet the operational requirements of City Parking (Glasgow). The integrated solution provides complete automation of camera control and recording profiles based on the activation of intercom, pay station or barrier control help points. An intercom call for assistance to the central Control Room directs an associated camera towards the help point, barrier or pay station. The recording profile for the camera is simultaneously increased for the duration of the intercom activity ensuring the highest possible quality of video and audio content is recorded for incident review and training purposes.
The integrated solution automatically presents operators with high quality, real-time video upon intercom activation removing the time delays associated with finding and selecting the relevant camera. Customer service and staff efficiencies are maximised with this automation allowing staff to focus solely on the issue at hand.
Visimetrics “CONTROL” management application provides control room operators with direct access to live and recorded images from any of the 250 cameras located within any of the council’s car parks. Access via the IP network to each of the car park’s distributed recordings systems provides the flexibility of centralised access while minimising bandwidth usage on the council’s corporate network to on-demand periods of access only.
City Parking’s Wayne Myrden commented: “A key aspect in centralising the management of our parking operation was the integration and control of our city-wide CCTV system. The design, implementation and on-going support from Visimetrics has been paramount in achieving this. They have taken our requirements and provided a robust, integrated solution across all major car park's within the city.”
Visimetrics specialise in the design, development and manufacture of high-performance digital video recording, storage and management systems for dedicated CCTV applications. Visimetrics solutions are deployed within critical CCTV operations such as casinos, prisons, ports, banks, education, transportation, city centre, government and military sites. Visimetrics work in partnership with consultants, integrators and technical partners to deliver CCTV solutions without compromise.
Visimetrics (UK) Ltd
Prestwick KA9 2TA
Contact: Barry Rooney, Managing Director
Tel: 01292 673770
Fax: 01292 677990
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