Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the nth running of the Beverley Knights Alternative Kiplingcotes Derby. It goes nowhere near Kiplingcotes, its not flat and there’s no prize for the “winner” but let’s not split hairs. The runners and riders gathered as usual at Market Cross for the 0930 start. While the real Derby celebrated its 500th anniversary, our version however is somewhat more “recent” , although looking around at some of the riders you’d be forgiven for thinking otherwise. 🤔
Ten riders set off towards North Newbald with Coppalot, sporting his summer livery, alongside DownShep setting the early pace. At the first junction a shout of “caaaaaar” went up repeated by several others making it sound like a load of sheep and brought an amused smile to those following behind. On the run into Newbald, Coppalot adopted his “side saddle” style to decrease his aerodynamic profile to try and gain an edge on the other runners. While not exactly elegant it did seem to be effective.
After regrouping, the “race” continued on to South Newbald then Hotham. While passing the church, Monsenior John had some trouble with his saddle. Feeling a little under the weather, he decided to abandon and return to his stable in Market Weighton while the rest of the runners continued through Hotham Park to reach North Cave.
The next obstacle was to negotiate through the chicanery of parked cars before heading to South Cave. On the way through Ellerker, Ming the Merciless had a sense of deja vu and thought he was heading to work once more. He even gained a sudden sense of navigation as he directed the “Derby” in the right direction on one occasion.
The flat section soon came to an end as we got the lower slopes of Elloughton Dale. The mantle was then taken up by DownShep and Ming the Merciless to lead the runners to the top. After regrouping we carried on to Riplingham. The next rider to abandon was Corporal Jones who returned to stables at the top of Lambwell Hill leaving the remaining eight to pass by Rowley Manor to Little Weighton.
The final furlong towards Risby was downhill with a following wind which led to an exhilarating finish as the riders pulled out all the stops to be first to put on the nosebag at the Folly Lake Café. Coppalot proved to be the hungrier of the lead runners.
Kerrigold took up photography duties while the riders grazed at the trough. Miss VP regaled us with tales of colts and fillies being taken on a mystery tour, which led to a general discussion on raising offspring. All too soon it was time to head back to the stables. Another superb “Derby” with everyone looking forward to the next outing.