The really big news in April was the triumph of my friend Nick Brookes` horse, Cornas. Nick is the supremo of Vinetrail, http://www.vinetrail.co.uk/, and a full-on Rhône supporter, as can be judged by the name of this beast that was actually bred in New Zealand. Not called Hawkes Bay, then Nick? Cornas prevailed in a 2-mile hurdle race at Wincanton, near another noted Rhône merchant`s stable, that of Yapp Brothers, http://www.yappbrothers.co.uk/. Boy, this is becoming a merchandising intro. The nub of the matter is that Cornas won at 12/1, a very considerate starting price for those not into the turf: ie invest 1 bottle on him, and receive a whole case, plus your original bottle, in return. He went unbacked by me, as at that precise moment I was in the ladies lavatory, the one with the door open, on the M4 motorway service station having received food poisoning in a Tapas restaurant in Monmouth, Wales. 3 members of my extended family were also felled in similar fashion. Go Cornas, and beware tapas in Monmouth.