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Cutting comments about Lambourn's heads of state; THE DIKLER.

NICKY HENDERSON'S is particularly difficult, while Clive Cox's is easy. Brendan Duke's hair is entertaining to cut, while Andrew Thornton's hair is also popular at The Gentleman's Shop in Hungerford, near Lambourn. Hairdressers, it seems, to racing society.

The Gentleman's Shop is a rather splendid barber's establishment that combines the ancient (open razors and shaving soaps) and modern (active enzyme facial cleansers and moisturising vitamin E shampoo). Luckily, they also have scissors.

According to hairdresser Cara Dinham, who was recently escorted on to the dancefloor by John Francome's father Norman, an experience that seems to have left a lasting impression, Henderson's hair presents a serious challenge - "it sticks out all over the place". In contrast, cutting Cox's hair is a doddle. "He just has it all shaved off," she says.

Evidently Cox's choice of hairstyle owes a lot to fellow trainer Tom Dascombe. "Tom was late for an appointment once," Cara explains, "and I told him I couldn't cut his hair because of the next customer's appointment. He asked me to do whatever was quickest, so I shaved it all off. He hasn't been in recently."

Other customers include Jamie Osborne, who Cara says is "cheeky" without elaborating. When told that he has a very talented wife, Cara says: "She'd need to be."

Dinham will be backing Simon in the Grand National, her husband bearing the same name, and is sorry that Thornton, who receives an especially good mention, is unable to ride through injury. On the other hand, substitute Dominic Elsworth is also a customer.

Out of sight, out of mind

THE DIKLER was somewhat surprised to see bookmakers Betfred were sponsoring the entire card at Wincanton on Monday, given that patrons of the firm's shops would not be able to see any of the action because of their wrangle with TurfTV.

No doubt the irony would not have been lost on any Betfred representatives who attended the meeting, who would have seen advertising banners for both sides virtually adjacent on the track.

The first shall be last

EITHER the managing director of one of Britain's highbrow racing syndicates travels on a non-EU passport, or else he is a blatant jumper of airport immigration queues.

If the latter, the honourable gentleman got his comeuppance on his return from Dubai when, despite being first to the baggage carousel at Luton Airport, he was one of the last to leave.
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Title Annotation:Sports
Publication:The Racing Post (London, England)
Date:Apr 2, 2008
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