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One of the good things about lockdown is that I have been reading a lot more. I finally got round to reading Taking The Fall by legendary jockey A.P. McCoy.
The book follows a young jockey Duncan who has ambitions to be champion jump jockey. Not only does he have to negotiate the challenges of being a young jockey, but he also has some challenges to overcome based on his father’s time in the racing industry as a trainer.
I really enjoyed this book. I think I expected it to be all about a jockey driving his way to the top. But there is so much else going on behind the scenes, a lot of which you don’t really understand until you get towards the end. It is really a clever thriller!
I also really enjoyed the description of race riding and the racing industry. It touches upon the idea of bent jockeys who deliberately lose races. There is a beautiful description at one time about losing the golden light what is riding honest races. This combined with the shouting between jockeys, the hiding of injuries and the politics of getting rides gives a fascinating and realistic insight into what it is like to be a jockey.
Taking The Fall was so much more than I was expecting and once I got into it I really struggled to put it down. I’m really excited to see that there is a second book out; Narrowing The Field. So that is going to be added to the list of things to read.
If you enjoy horse racing and a bit of a thriller, I can highly recommend this book. I thoroughly enjoyed it!