Best day so far at the festival. Dave took me to meet a man called Robert (CANNOT remember his surname, must get it tomorrow otherwise will look like mega plonker!) who coaches BBC employees in commentating, interviewing and presenting. Our discussion ended up being at least 15 minutes long and I felt so privileged to be able to talk to someone who is high up in the BBC hierarchy after years of sports reporting and editing. He gave me some great tips particularly emphasising the importance of practice and listening to recordings of myself back sometime after they were done so I can listen completely critically without knowing what I'm going to say next. He also said to make sure that everything on radio sounded as conversational as possible as opposed to script read. I felt so grateful when he said I had a good base tone to my voice which would be able to go over loud background noises and especially that I could drop him in some recordings of voice overs and he would critique them - an offer which I will certainly take up.
For the racing today we started going to the usual spots of in front of the stands, the pre-parade ring and the main paddock, but then we moved right to the middle of the racecourse - literally next to the rails where usually only photographers go - confidence proving again to be key. This was an utterly incredible experience - being less than a metre away from the immense Big Bucks powering up the hill to the finish was a truly unforgettable moment. He is a stunning horse and you could tell really early on in the race that he was never going to lose - the gallop was effortless! I only wish I'd put my student loan onto him!
I have been building up as many contacts as possible, and the people I've been working with have been so helpful for this. I even turned away from the possibility of an early night to go out with the radio guys last night, which was great, firstly because I was able to find out about other contacts, secondly because they were a really good laugh, thirdly because I didn't have to pay for anything and finally because I got a free Guinness hat - reasons enough I think!!
Anyway I'm gutted it's the last day tomorrow - still haven't decided to put my money on the wonderful Denman or go with my gut instinct for Kauto Star, we will have to see, but I am looking forward to it immeasurably.