I have to own up that I am not a horse racing man but if I were ever to be converted it would be because of Champs de Mars racecourse slap bang in the centre of Mauritius. I also confess that if work had not taken me there I would not have bothered but, a word of advice, if you are on the island in 2012 make sure you make a visit as the course, established by the English, is an amazing 200 years old. The ideal time to be there for foreign visitors is the first weekend in December when they entertain international jockeys from all over the world and it was my pleasure to interview Frankie Dettori and the Frenchman Staphane Pasquier, two gentlemen of the first order. Don't expect to be on your own if you go as around 40,000 attend the races on each of the two days of International Jockeys Weekend. A word of advice, if you ask your hotel to arrange the visit the chances are that you will be found a place in one of the many boxes, especially if it is one of the hotels owned by the sponsors, Sun International.
Love racing or hate it, you cannot help but be impressed by the atmosphere of one of the oldest racecourses in the world.
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