A minute with Barney Clifford - Kempton Director of Racing
Barney Clifford is Director of Racing and Clerk of the Course at Kempton Park Racecourse who will host the William Hill Winter Festival on Monday, December 26 & Tuesday, December 27.
Q1. The question on everyone's lips - how's the weather looking for Boxing Day?
The long range forecast for mid to late December for the South of England indicates an unsettled period with outbreaks of rain at times, as well as occasionally strong winds.
Temperatures will be mostly around average, although southern areas should sometimes see above average temperatures.
Q2. Tell us about a typical Christmas at Kempton Park
In a word 'Magical'
Q3. What's your favourite King George VI memory?
I have two I'm afraid, Kicking King winning in 2004 and Kauto Star achieving a record four consecutive wins in 2009.
Q4. Kauto Star looked back to his best at Haydock in the Betfair Chase - do you think, come Boxing Day, he'll claim a record breaking fifth King George?
There's a lot of stiff opposition in the entries...
Kauto's performance at Haydock was outstanding and he looked back to his best; on that performance I believe he is the one they all have to beat.
Q5. Final question - who's going to win this years race :-)
I think ground conditions will be a major factor in deciding this year's winner.
At this stage I am forecasting a going description of Good (Good to Soft in Places) for Boxing Day; this description will benefit horses like Kauto Star, Planet of Sound, Master Minded and although Long Run won the Gold Cup on Good ground he may need it a little softer around Kempton.
Predicting the winner at this stage is too close to call in what is potentially the best William Hill King George VI line up for some years.
Tickets for the William Hill Winter Festival are available now from just £8.
The fantastic value Cracker Packages include over £30 worth of value.
For more information, or to book, visit the website www.boxingdayraces.co.uk<http://www.boxingdayraces.co.uk> or call 0844 579 3008.