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25th April 2024 5:05 am

“A difference of opinion is what makes horse racing and missionaries."

Universe upon universe and so ad infinitum

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For those of you who have already grasped the Quantum Sciences involved in the Many-Worlds Interpretation (MWI), I apologise. For the rest of us pedestrians, it is perhaps easier to simply say that the MWI is one of the most controversial and fascinating interpretations of quantum mechanics. It proposes that there are infinitely many universes existing in parallel, each with its own unique history and future. These universes are not separate or distinct from each other, but rather they all coexist in the same space and time. According to the MWI, every time a quantum event occurs, such as the decay of a radioactive atom or the passage of an electron through a double slit, the universe splits into multiple copies. Each copy represents a different possible outcome of the event, and all of these outcomes are equally real and exist in their own separate universe. Every event is predetermined, and there are no probabilities involved. The only reason we perceive the world as being probabilistic is because we are constantly observing different universes and seeing only the outcomes that occur in our own universe.

The MWI is a powerful and elegant interpretation of quantum mechanics, but it also has some very strange and counterintuitive implications. For example, it suggests that we are constantly being bombarded with information from other universes and that our own choices and actions can have effects on the outcomes of events in other universes. Despite its strangeness, the MWI is a very serious and respected interpretation of quantum mechanics – but to help, here is a simplified analogy to help understand the MWI:

Imagine that you backed Read To Return last Saturday at Cheltenham in the 1:10. Trained by Tony Martin and well-supported by the market, his 7lb claimer through sheer inexperience left the horse far too much to do. According to me, he should have won. However according to MWI, when I made the decision to back the nag, the universe split into two copies. One copy of the universe contained a winning bet, the other was a loser. Simultaneously, if the jockey had been steadier, the horse would have won and the jockey gets more winning rides. In another world, the jockey never gets another ride again, but becomes a milkman, invests in a dairy and becomes a multi-millionaire. So, we are all living in many universes at the same time. You are living in the universe where you ignored the bet and won, and I’m living in the one where I didn’t and didn’t. However strange and counterintuitive, this is the central idea of the MWI.

Luckily for the advancement of Science, I have proof of this phenomenon having witnessed in a matter of 20 minutes two universities clearly visible and being occupied simultaneously by me. Firstly I was discussing with a man from Sky TV, why it was no longer possible for me to get Racing TV with my new Sky Stream. Sadly my correspondent was working from home, which in his case was in the middle of Poto-Poto Market, in the heart of Brazzaville, in the Republic of the Congo. I don’t know that to be true, but he was almost speaking a language like Kituba or possibly Ladi, (it’s all Bantu to me), and with the noise of the market, crying children, the oil drilling, and the attack by mercenaries using tanks and grenades, the conversation and his (I assume) technical answers, were pointless. Fed up with this I asked him his name, largely so that I could put in a specific request for him to be given a better telephone. As his road digger started up, next to the Gospel Choir’s creche, he said “wayoowannanomenaim”. Sadly at that point, the connection was lost or perhaps even cut off in error.

Not ten minutes later, I was pondering my next move, when I read the following phrase:

“Our names are central to who we are as individuals, and getting people’s names right is crucial to helping people feel seen, included and valued.”

According to the Spectator, this monument to Tosh was in Whitehall’s in-house magazine Civil Service World and the entire feature was a celebration of their Say My Name scheme, in which participants pledge to include a phonetic guide to pronouncing their name in every written communication. This extraordinary piece of time-wasting and costly bullshit requires the participants to have badges, emails, TikTok, library cards, Royal Enclosure badges, (I assume), in short everywhere your name is written, to add to it with a phonetic counterpart.

Proof if ever needed that at least two parallel universes exist at the same time. In the first, your service has got worse and the resolver to the issue doesn’t want to give you his name. In the second, the service is already non-existent, but everyone wants you to know they no longer care about your views. We also know that there must be at least another two universes, one where Mr Sky has a lovely office from which he quietly and efficiently resolves my dilemma and is called Bob. The second is where the Civil Service are too busy doing their job to give their names, as the entire Team is ensuring the country’s infrastructure is pulsating with 95% efficiency. We can only send a letter to The Grauniad saying how marvellous the CS has made our green and pleasant land.

MWI also suggests one day these tips will all win…

I cannot keep saying it. If “race planning” was working for the Campaign for the Elimination of All Sporting Equestrians (CEASE) they would have won The Ayotolla’s Medal of Honour. This NH programme is not competitive, today’s TV races are in the main uninteresting, and this is not a spectacle. As David Jennings, The Racing Post’s Deputy Ireland editor suggested today, we are sleepwalking into having a G1 walkover on national TV. I know Cheltenham is important – but if the price we have to pay is four months of racing along these lines – whilst simultaneously the Donald McCains of this world are asking where are all the races for 100-130-rated horses – then something is seriously wrong. There are so many areas of the programme which need rethinking – but it needs to be done now – not at some point in 2024. Talk to Murphy, Skelton and McCain. Ask them what they’d do. Stop focussing on the ROI from betting on each race and look at the employment, livelihood, investment, support and benefits that a balanced programme brings to the owners and trainers. The BHA uses politicians’ words like Intend, Review, and Consider to explain why this problem was identified two years ago and why, like bunnies, they are staring down the headlights.

1:15 HAYDOCK Best Odds On The Betfair Exchange Hcap Hdl Cl2 (4yo+) 2m3f 10 run

STAINSBY GIRL won this last year but is now 12lb higher.
PARK ANNONCIADE is now 2/4 over hurdles and is being bumped up the distance ladder on ground that seems to work for the 5yo. Stablemate CARNFUNNOCK is expected to shine on his seasonal debut, he won first time out last season, and the handicap company will suit. PARK HILL DANCER is up 8lbs which might not stop her from completing the hat-trick -but the ground might not suit. FINGAL’S HILL’s current form must put him on some shortlists, but I get the feeling that life is getting tougher for the 7yo. With his new stable and a decent record under Noel Meade in Ireland, I have a soft spot for Donald McCain’s LUNAR POWER who carries top weight.

LUNAR POWER 2 pts e/w

1:30 ASCOT Nirvana Spa 1965 Chs (G2) Cl1 (4yo+) 2m5f 4 run

Previous C&D winner SHISHKIN take on just three rivals on his return to action. Pic D’Orhy is nearest on ratings, and he was well beaten by Shishkin in a CD G1 in February – the pair of them making their seasonal debuts. Assume that MWI and Quantum Physics and tears in the fabric of time are all responsible if Shishkin can’t win this and stay on track for the King George VI Chase at Kempton on Boxing Day.

No Bet – see below

1:50 HAYDOCK Betfair Exchange Graduation Chs Cl2 (4yo+) 2m5½f 5 run

GAILARD DU MESNIL was coming third in the Grand National when we last saw him. I know Mullins marauders have not necessarily shone on seasonal debut – but surely…?

No Bet – see below

2:05 ASCOT Coral Hdl (G2) (Registered As The Ascot Hdl) Cl1 (4yo+) 2m3½f 5 run

Really – well, I suppose they at least turned out. It’s like a bad 1980s pop video, where Ridley or similar is trying to add mood by shoving in some street faces, or “characters.” The old ducker and diver; an actress of uncertain years back from resting, somebody’s elderly relative and the young punk trying to make a name for himself. Plus of course a player with something to prove after a dismal appearance LTO. Once upon a time SCEAU ROYAL would have eaten this lot for a light snack – one more throw of the dice -why not?


2:20 HAYDOCK Betfair “Serial Winners” Stayers’ Hcap Hdl Cl1 (4yo+) 3m½f 16 run

CRAMBO is a strong favourite, and my second choice on the Trends is second favourite -so I’m guessing I’m travelling in the right direction. However, top-weight BOLD ENDEAVOUR performs well in these in big field staying handicap hurdles, including over the course and distance. He had a decent pipe-opener at Newbury LTO and looks value. Finally, a small touch on WAKOOL who keeps catching my eye on his consistent ratings and he is now within 1lb of his last winning mark.

BOLD ENDEAVOUR – WAKOOL 2 pts e/w both (5p gen – 6p Skybet)


2:35 PUNCHESTOWN Unibet Morgiana Hdl (G1) (4yo+) 2m½f 4 run

The only horse STATE MAN couldn’t beat so far in his career is Constitution Hill in last season’s Champion Hurdle, and there was no disgrace in that. He won this race last year and should mop these types of races up for fun.

No Bet – see below

3:00 HAYDOCK Betfair Chs (G1) (Registered As The Lancashire Chs) Cl1 (5yo+) 3m1½f 4 run

BRAVEMANSGAME is a very short favourite and could easily get done by ROYAL PAGAILLE or PROTEKTORAT… or

No Bet – see below

3:15 ASCOT Jim Barry Hurst Park Hcap Chs Cl2 (4yo+) 2m1f 8 run


3:35 HAYDOCK Betfair “Free Racing Multiple Today” Hcap Chs Cl2 (4yo+ 0-145) 3m1½f 11 run

FAMOUS BRIDGE 6 pts Win –  SID ISMAEL 2 pts e/w


5 x Win fourfolds 2 pts each – 1 x Win fivefold 5 pts

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