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14 Feb 2011 | 19:15
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Big Mac bids farewellHeadlines
John McCririck

John McCririck is clinging to hope that he might appear on Channel 4 Racing at some point in the future as the curtain comes down on a colourful era.

Saturday sees the final day of the long-standing Channel 4 team, with the Morning Line and racing from Newbury, Doncaster and Leopardstown bringing down the curtain.

IMG Media takes over from Highflyer in producing Channel 4 Racing which will be solely responsible for the sport on terrestrial TV after BBC coverage came to an end.

McCririck, 72, is one of several familiar faces who will not be on the new team along with Derek Thompson, Mike Cattermole and Alastair Down. Although bitterly disappointed, McCririck described his time at Channel 4 as a "privilege".

He said: "It's been a fantastic experience to do what you love doing for 30 years. Nearly every other sport has someone on that has done that sport - Gary Lineker in football, the cricketers, the golfers etc.

"I'd worked in betting shops before going on to television and tried to pass on what was happening in the betting ring. It's been a privilege.

"There are two things different about it. There is no-one else on television who is regularly among the public, hour-in hour-out. There's no point putting prices on the screen.

"You have to be in the ring, see what's happening and try to pass on what the betting jungle is like. That's been a motivation and a difficult thing, but the benefit it brings is no-one can compare how bad I am. I've been lucky enough in that there's no-one else going round the betting ring like me.

"Strange things happen in life and I'm still hoping they will have a re-think and they might call me back. I know I'm being optimistic, but you never know. My New Year's resolution is to get back on the Channel 4 team, but it's been a great time. If I was sitting at home what I would want to know is what is happening in the betting ring, that's the motto I've always had.

"That is always how I followed it and it's been fantastic working with Tanya Stevenson bringing in all the exchanges. It's important to inform all punters what is happening on the machines and in the betting ring. It's been great fun. There's been one or two disasters but it's been a privilege to do and I'm very sorry for it to be unfairly taken away."

19 January 2017

Classic quotes for Really Special after Meydan success
Alfie proves a money-spinner for Kerry Lee at Wincanton
No place quite like Ludlow for Land Of Vic
Willie Mullins happy with progress of Faugheen and Annie Power
Ryanair Chase on the horizon for Sizing John after Kinloch Brae success
Sizing John shows strength to win Kinloch Brae at Thurles
Willie Mullins mob-handed in Mares' Hurdle at Cheltenham Festival
Ballyandy heading straight to Betfair Hurdle
Faugheen and Annie Power part of 47-strong entry for Stayers' Hurdle
Taunton Saturday fixture subject to inspection
Go-ahead for Wincanton after fourth inspection
Graeme McPherson considers Yorkshire raid with Cheltenham hope Ami Desbois
'Hopeful' Wincanton calls fourth inspection
Un De Sceaux and Ar Mad clash in Clarence House Chase at Ascot
Barry Murphy has Cheltenham Festival in mind for Pairofbrowneyes
Third inspection called at Wincanton
Chateau Conti has Supreme goal at Cheltenham Festival
Wincanton announces second course inspection
Wincanton takes precautions
Ascot and Haydock positive over weather for weekend action
Midlands National target for Pobbles Bay
Champion Hurdle entry for Moon Racer but Supreme the 'logical race'
Beyond Conceit in Supreme picture after Newbury return
Big date with Heartbreak City for Donagh Meyler
Relkeel winner Agrapart all set for Stayers' Hurdle tilt
Really Special bids to put Classic case at Meydan
First Lieutenant just one of the stars in red-hot hunter chase at Thurles
Willie Mullins hands Black Hercules Thurles redemption mission

18 January 2017

Jimmy Moffatt sitting tight with Highland Lodge ahead of Aintree
Joy for owner Bill Davies as he bags first winner - after 25 years of trying
Desert Orchid's trainer David Elsworth hoping to keep Kempton
Warren Greatrex warns The Nipper not certain to make Cheltenham
Boost for courses as racing back to second-best attended sport
Evan Williams set to put Clyne on trial at Haydock
Warren Greatrex considers Stayers' Hurdle test for One Track Mind
Annie Power and Faugheen star in 28 for Champion Hurdle
Newbury receives go-ahead at third attempt
Newbury 'very hopeful' as third inspection announced
Kerry Lee ducks Thurles mission with Ascot-bound Kylemore Lough
Newbury announces second course inspection
Roger Charlton keeps the faith with Frankel filly Fair Eva
Newbury calls inspection after overnight temperatures drop below freezing
Second Thought continues on the up at Kempton
Classy Starchitect up and running over fences at Ayr
Politologue stars in novice entry at Haydock
Contrasting views on Kempton closure from prominent Newmarket figures
Cyrus Darius primed for eagerly-awaited weekend return at Haydock
Heartbreak City on course for big handicap date at Leopardstown
Decorated Knight delights Roger Charlton in Kempton spin
Sire De Grugy skips Clarence House outing at Ascot
Yanworth to tackle Contenders heat with Cheltenham in his sights

17 January 2017

Sir Anthony McCoy weighing in heavier since retirement due to chocolate cravings
Australian jockey Josh Cartwright set to learn fate after riding drama
Richard Fahey anticipating northern support for returning Paul Hanagan
Michael Buckley enthused by Brain Power's Ascot performance
Charlemar set to step up in trip following Tolworth disappointment
Petit Mouchoir to face Champion test at Leopardstown
Un De Sceaux team pinpoint Ascot nous as key strength in Clarence House Chase
Bastien blazes a trail to pocket Plumpton prize for Alan King
Fit-again Noel Fehily back in action at Exeter
Godolphin dominate fast-track qualifier as Antiquarium roars at Wolverhampton
Harry Fry guarded against Cleeve complacency for Unowhatimeanharry
Colin Tizzard set to unleash Cheltenham Gold Cup hope Alary at Haydock
Harry Fry plans to chart direct Cheltenham Festival route with American
Gordon Elliott looking to Irish Gold Cup with Empire Of Dirt
Willie Mullins hoping Faugheen will make Irish Champion return

16 January 2017

Jan Faltejsek ends British drought as Fairlee Grey strikes at Ayr
Tributes paid after death of Fakenham maestro Cool Roxy
No plans for Dougie Gittens to appeal against Kelso ban
Un De Sceaux spearheads Clarence House octet at Ascot
Vezelay on course for Cheltenham Trial
Dunphy and Logan banned for two years following Like A Diamond case
Connections mulling Arkle outing for Identity Thief at Leopardstown
Gary Moore lining up Banks raid with Benatar
Amateur rider Dougie Gittins hit with 10-day ban at Kelso
Ballyoisin makes amends for recent fall
Champion trainer Paul Nicholls has his say on Kempton closure plans
Jack Kennedy shines as Ball D'Arc keeps up title momentum for Gordon Elliott
Barra banks maiden win at Fairyhouse
Grand National contender One For Arthur excites Peter Scudamore

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