17th May 2021

So, so sad to hear of Joe Mercer’s death. It was only on Saturday that I saw Bruce Raymond at Newbury and asked after Joe. Bruce said, ‘He’s great. As bright as ever. He phones me every week’.

As a child and teenager, Joe was a superhero in my eyes. I could never have imagined that years later he would be coming to stay in my house. When he was racing manager for Sheikh Maktoum, he would come to stay and look at the horses the next morning. If racing was at York, Joe would leave after his last runner and, if I had one in a later race, he would let himself in and make himself at home. By the time I got back, Joe would have been raking about for a nice bottle of red wine and he’d be half way through his first glass. We loved having him to stay.

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