Our volunteer Geoffrey Smith (also known as mascot Tadworth The Hound) shares his story about a recent mascot Tadworth and friends attended.
The Children’s Trust Charity Mascot Race and Music Night at Lingfield Park Resort Racecourse - 25th July 2015
‘‘It was a beautiful, hot summer’s day and the venue was packed with the races in the day and music in the evening. Thousands arrived and among these were two mini buses from The Children’s Trust with children ready for an evening of fun. This event consisted of 7 horse races; a mascot race and Bon Jovi Tribute band live on stage after racing.’’
The Mascot Race
Our mascot race started at 5pm. Usually, we race 1 furlong (220 yards) but due to the warm weather, we decided to make it a 100 yard dash! Some mascots couldn’t take part due to the heat, but the 12 who could lined up apprehensively at the starting line waiting to hear the words: ‘Mascots are you ready? Go!’ and off they went!
Howie the Hornet from Horsham stormed to the front and won by quite a distance. Following him home in second place was Barchi the Cockerel from Nando’s and in third place came Sketch from Frankie and Benny’s in Crawley. There was a dead heat between four mascots for last place so the stewards had to put in an enquiry. We will not name and shame, of course!!
Next was the prize giving for mascots in the winners enclosure and was presented by Lingfield Park Resort Racecourse Executive Director, Andrew Perkins. Andrew commented that this was his first ever mascot race and he enjoyed what he had seen. He expressed his joy in being able to very much look forward to the next one next year and invited everybody back again. Course announcer Steve Watts kept the banter and fun going with the huge crowd that had come to watch.
Time for the mascots to take a break, to take their heads off and have some water. It was a really beautiful summers evening meaning it was hot in costume so these breaks are essential to refuel!
Jennifer Webb, the marketing manager from Lingfield Park Racecourse Resort thanked all the mascots for coming and invited everybody back to do the same again in 2016. She then presented a small trophy to the best dressed mascot which was Ringo Horsham Dc, and every mascot who took part was given a certificate to say thank you for being a part of the event.
Myself and my wife Jenny, thanked Jennifer and the Lingfield team on behalf of The Children’s Trust. We also thanked all mascots present for their great efforts and gladly accepted Jenny’s kind invite to return in 2016 – the date was confirmed for 4th June 2016.
All of the mascots were now rested and refreshed so along with some helpers we set off on the bucket collection ‘part one’. This covered allocated bars, family areas, food halls and other areas away from racing. Later the ‘part two’ bucket collection took place at the main exits; teams of local mascots stayed on to help with this task until the music evening started. Our collection was very good totalling over £650!
By the evening mini buses from The Children’s Trust had come back again with the older children for the Bon Jovi concert. Us mascots and the teenagers and staff who had come from The Children’s Trust had our own viewing area with our own security guards and stewards looking after us.
In conclusion, we would like to thank Jennifer and the Lingfield team for their help on the day. We would also like to thank all the Mascots who came to this event supporting The Children’s Trust, giving your time for free - without you guys we would not be able to have an event so special thanks from Tadworth , Jenny, Geoff and all at the The Children’s Trust to you all.’
And everyone at The Children’s Trust would like reflect what Geoff has said and thank all of the mascots, the racecourses and viewers who support the mascot races for your ongoing support. We would also like to say a big thank you to Geoff and Jenny Smith for all the time they put in to co-ordinating and organising all the mascots races they do!
If you’d like to witness a mascot race first-hand, below is a list of event they will be attending. Mascots from all organisations are welcome!
- 1st December: Tadworth the Hound at Tadworth shop from 10am to 1pm
- 3rd December: Tadworth the hound at Dorking shop Christmas shopping 3pm to 6pm
- 4th December: Peppa Pig and two mascots at Stoneleigh shop
- 13th November: Peppa Pig and two mascots at Nork shop
- 20th December: Lingfield Park Racecourse cheque presentation
- 16th February: Pancake Day races at Horsham Carfax
- 26th March: The Children’s Trust Easter Fair
- 17th April: Wincanton Mascot Race day
- 24th April: London Marathon
- 4th June: Lingfield Park Racecourse
- 25th and 26th June: Supercar Weekend
- 2nd July: The Children’s Trust Summer Screen
- 7th August: Windsor Mascot race day
- 21st August: Worcester Mascot day
- 18th September: Uttoxeter Racecourse