If a bloke can’t smoke a fag any more, will he be able to set light to a few faggots?

April 27, 2011

Yes, it's a fag - and he has the butt end near his mouth.

Back in 1988, Mark Todd featured in Sports Illustrated after winning his gold medal on Charisma at the Seoul Olympics.

At that time it was the horse’s age – not Todd’s – that drew comment.

Charisma was as old as any horse at Seoul, and surely the smallest. At the team awards ceremony, he really did look like a pony standing beside 11 real horses, and the scene was all the more bizarre when the riders dismounted and the tiny horse’s man stood head and shoulders above the other 11 riders.

But the star of the item was Todd, then aged 32, who was raised on a farm and had been riding since he was seven.

He has wavy brown hair that shines copper in the sun when he doffs his helmet.

He smokes Silk Cut cigarettes, and so there is a timeless quality to him as he stands there in his classic riding costume, razor thin, handsome and elegant—the way all people in cigarette advertisements, going to the hounds, used to look

That’s Alf’s memory of him in those days, too.

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You’re never too old to say giddy-up to a horse – or to lead a political party

April 26, 2011

But first you must find a good horse.

There’s more media fascination with age this morning on news that Mark Todd has won the Badminton Horse Trials and set himself up for another crack at an Olympic medal.

The Herald raises it in the second paragraph of its report on the Kiwi horseman.

The legendary New Zealand horseman became Badminton’s oldest champion, aged 55, after an ice-cool clear round on NZB Land Vision shaded British Olympic hopefuls Piggy French and Mary King.

Remarkably, it was Land Vision’s debut at the elite four-star level, but Todd guided him home in masterful fashion to clinch his fourth Badminton crown, 31 years after the first.

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