The Sport of Kings: Kinship, Class and Thoroughbred Breeding in Newmarket
The Sport of Kings is an ethnography of the British racing industry based upon two years of participant observation in Newmarket, the international headquarters of flat racing. Racing in Britain provides a lens through which ideas of class, status, tradition and hierarchy can be examined in an environment which is both superficially familiar and richly exotic. This book explores concepts about ‘nature’ specific to thoroughbred racehorse breeding, and pursues the idea that in making statements about animals, we reveal something of ourselves. It explains the action that takes place on racecourses, in training yards, on studs and at bloodstock auctions. It analyses the consumption of racing through betting on the racecourse and in betting shops, and it proffers an insightful description of a unique class system: that of the humans and animals involved in the production of British flat racing.
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ability amongst animals anthropology apprentice association auction behaviour betting shop betting shops blood bloodstock agent bloodstock industry bookies bookmakers breeders breeding Britain British Horseracing Board British Racing School Cambridge century chapter colt connections course culture Derby described discussions dominance Elmdon English thoroughbred equine example experience explanation fieldwork filly flat racing foal Frankie Dettori Fred Archer Fusaichi Pegasus gallops gambling gender Heath heredity horse horse's horseracing human ideas identified ideology of pedigree individual informants involvement Jockey Club John Magnier kinship knowledge lads London male mare nature Newmarket families owners paddock particular potential prize money punters racecourse racegoers racehorses racing families racing industry Racing Post racing society racing's relationship reproduction riding racehorses risk role Sadler's sire social sport stable stake stallion status Strathern stud groom stud hands successful suggest Tattersalls thoroughbred racehorse told Tote trainer University Press whilst winners women yearling