Amateur jockey Anthony Knott gives new meaning to the word “persistence.”
After 28 years of competing without a win, the Englishman was thrilled Thursday to finally find himself as the front-runner in a race.
In fact, the dairy farmer was so overcome with the taste of success that he nearly threw it all away.
The excited 44-year-old stood up in his irons to celebrate and wave to spectators, causing him to be nearly overtaken in the final furlong.
But despite his nearly premature celebration, Knott finished first and put an end to his 28-year losing streak, reported the United Kingdom’s Daily Mail Reporter.
On the heels of his victory, an ecstatic Knott decided to go out on top and retire from racing.
“I still can’t really believe what actually happened. It just hasn’t sunk in yet, I’m on such a buzz,” said the married father of three. “I’m a bit unaccustomed to victory, and as I was coming into the final part of the race, there was a massive roar from the crowd.
“It was just instinct to stand up and give them a wave. Then I thought, ‘Oh God, it’s not finished yet,’ and I could hear another horse coming up behind me, so I sat back down and got on with it.”
Knott, who started riding when he was 16, had pondered retirement in recent years.
“A few years ago I thought it was about time I packed it all in. I’d been trying so long for a win and never managed it,” he said. “I’m over the moon — 28 years is a long time to wait for a victory. I just wanted to win one race, and I’ve done it now, so I think I’ll leave it at that.”
• “ROSCOE” WALLACE — Detroit Pistons forward Rasheed Wallace has some serious game on the basketball court, but off it he’s a self-described “jackass” and the resident comedian of the ballclub.
Wallace, who goes by the nicknames “Roscoe” and “Dirty 30,” shared some of his teammates’ monikers with yardbarker.com.
Richard Hamilton is referred to as “Hollywood Hamilton,” Tayshaun Prince is “The Compton Kid,” and Amir Johnson is “Paper Thin.”
Rodney Stuckey is known as “Stuck” and “Young 50,” aka Curtis Jackson Jr., the real name of rapper 50 Cent.
Wallace calls Kwame Brown “Coffee With No Cream” and new teammate Allen Iverson “Chuck,” we assume for the way he chucks the ball at the hoop every time he touches it.
Jason Maxiell reportedly was referred to as “The Baby Eater” in college, but Wallace said he simply calls him “Darkness.”
• HIGH-SCORING AFFAIR — It turns out Iowa’s football players weren’t the only ones who enjoyed a romp Saturday in Minneapolis.
As the Hawkeyes pounded Minnesota 55-0, two Iowa fans were caught having sex in a bathroom stall at the Metrodome.
According to a police report, a Metrodome security officer saw two people having sex in a handicapped stall after noticing two sets of feet with underwear dropped to the ground.
A group of 15 onlookers were gawking at the scene by the time officers broke the couple up and wrote them misdemeanor citations, reported the Web site myfoxtwincities.com.
Here’s the kicker: The woman, 38, was turned over to her husband, and the man, 26, was turned over to his girlfriend.
COMPILED BY TODD DEWEY LAS VEGAS REVIEW-JOURNAL