Search for your sports books:

Featured Publisher: Pitch Publishing
The incomparable range of sports books produced by Pitch Publishing over the past few years has ensured theyÕve secured a place as one of the UKÕs leading publishers of sporting material.

From the unashamedly nostalgic Got, Not Got and the thought-provoking If Only: An Alternative History of the Beautiful Game, to Andrew MurtaghÕs superbly-written Gentleman and a Player, Pitch Publishing are always likely to come up with something different. Take a look at their current range: www.pitchpublishing.co.uk




Read Review
<back to archive

Mr Darley’s Arabian: High Life, Low Life, Sporting Life: A History of Racing in 25 Horses By Christopher McGrath

Release date: 30th June, 2016
Publisher: John Murray

List Price: £20.00
Our Price: £17.00
You Save: £3 (15%)
Buy Now

Some books take a while to get going, engaging with the reader only slowly, rather like cautious lovers who retain the subconscious option of walking away should things not work out as they hope. Other books insist upon your uninterrupted attention from the outset, a category reserved for finely-crafted tomes such as Mr Darley’s Arabian.

That all thoroughbred horses are descended from just three stallions imported to England around three centuries ago is well known, although author Christopher McGrath maintains that two of them, the Godolphin Arabian and the Byerley Turk have, over the past hundred years, “been eradicated from the ‘top line’ of racehorse pedigrees.”

The third stallion, the Darley Arabian, never raced and produced only around 20 foals after he was exported from modern day Libya to Yorkshire, yet he would create a ‘eugenic miracle’, uniting the lineage of nineteen out of twenty thoroughbreds lining up for any race in the world. “As founding fathers go,” writes McGrath, “Mr Darley’s Arabian must be counted the daddy of them all.”

Mr Darley’s Arabian opens in 2011 at the starting gate of the 2,000 Guineas as the great Frankel is loaded, his presence having an apparent, if unseen, impact upon his dozen four-legged rivals who sense a dangerous opponent first noted in the parade ring.

The description of how the race unfolds over the next 97 seconds is truly gripping, sufficient for any sports enthusiast to embrace the thrill of the chase, even though Frankel romps home,

The author wastes no time reminding us that the day’s prize money (£200,000) is ‘incidental’ to the stud fees commanded by Frankel and his ilk (£125,000 a time); a 12-month-old foal sired by Frankel would sell for £1.15 million.

This is a fascinating tale of horses comparable to Frankel and of those who owned, trained and traded them. The story is peppered with a cast of ‘characters’, a euphemism for shysters, many of ‘noble’ birth, and enough scandal, double-dealing and adventure to fill the trashiest novel.

Fortunately, Mr Darley’s Arabian is very well written, its narrative racing along effortlessly – as you might expect of a thoroughbred author.


<back to archive


Toolstation


SBOTM Current Top 10

One Goal A Coach, A Team and the Game That Brought a Divided Town Together By Amy Bass
Hachette Books
Read Review Buy Now
Maradona Once Upon A Time In Naples (2018 Edition) By John Ludden
CreateSpace
Read Review Buy Now
Chasing Points A Season on the Pro Tennis Circuit By Gregory Howe
Pitch Publishing
Read Review Buy Now
Iron Ambition Lessons I’ve Learned from the Man Who made Me a Champion By Mike Tyson with Larry Sloman
Sphere
Read Review Buy Now
Fifty Cup Finals My Life in Football By Nick Collins
Pitch Publishing
Read Review Buy Now
The Range Bucket List: The Golf Adventure of a Lifetime By James Dodson
Simon & Schuster
Read Review Buy Now
Anquetil Alone: The Legend of the Controversial Tour de France Champion By Paul Fournel
Pursuit Books
Read Review Buy Now
The Mad and the Bad Boxing Tales of Murder, Madness and Mayhem By Thomas Myler
Pitch Publishing
Read Review Buy Now
When Footballers Were Skint A Journey in Search of the Soul of Football By Jon Henderson
Biteback Publishing
Read Review Buy Now
No Helmets Required The remarkable story of the American All Stars By Gavin Willacy
Pitch Publishing
Read Review Buy Now

Amazon’s top 6 best-sellers

© Sharks Media Ltd 2004 – 2012. Site designed and maintained by Marcus Hamblett for Furydesign.