Paddington emerged victorious but Eclipse was an enthralling duel

I should have listened to George Duffield. Sandown Park’s Eclipse Stakes, the first time the Classic generation of three-year-olds take on their elders, is one of my favourite races and the then 53-year-old rider’s triumph on Giant’s Causeway in 2000, beating Kalanisi by a head after Pat Eddery had driven him into the lead 200 yards from the finish, was the duel I will never forget. Duffield was Sir Mark Prescott’s stable jockey and soon after that race the Newmarket maestro took a call from Aidan O’Brien, Giant’s Causeway’s trainer. ‘Whatever you do Sir Mark,’ said the quiet Irish voice, ‘make sure you breed from him before you let him

London’s 598 railways stations have made the capital what it is

I began this book waiting for a diesel train to Derby, under the windy, boxy, flat-roofed bit which one of Sir Norman Foster’s team added to the back end of St Pancras station. At around 7 p.m. on a weekday only a dozen or so people were travelling. In the arcade below — built by the proud Midland Railway, as Christian Wolmar reminds us, to the dimensions of the Burton beer barrels the space was designed to store — shops are being boarded up. No one buys a new wheelie case or jewellery before catching a Eurostar to Paris anymore. Among the many entertaining facts he has assembled, Wolmar calculates