Mike Cattermole is a TV presenter & commentator on horse racing for Channel 4 Racing and AtTheRaces. Guest, key-note and after-dinner speaker & awards ceremonies host & MC at Royal Ascot, Glorious Goodwood, Epsom Derby, Grand National, Breeders' Cup, Arc de Triomphe, Dubai World Cup and corporate hospitality events in horse racing.
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Back to Home | About this site | Mike Cattermole - About Mike

About Mike

<center><b>Mike Cattermole</b></center>
Mike Cattermole

Mike has worked for some of the top branded entities within the horse racing industry since 1984 and is widely recognised & respected throughout the sport. Since 1995, Mike has been a tv presenter and broadcaster and a key part of the BAFTA & Royal Television Society award-winning terrestrial Channel 4 Racing team for 14 seasons between 1999 and 2012.

From 2010 to 2012 he was the lead male presenter of the station's flat racing coverage alongside Emma Spencer. He also presented the very popular sister show, "The Morning Line", broadcast every Saturday on Channel 4 between 8-9am.

His interest in the sport was encouraged at an early age by his father who indeed remains a keen racing fan well into his 70s. Watching the Grand National on TV as a young boy, Mike was soon captivated by the sport and, having watched Red Rum wear down Crisp in that never-to-be-forgotten race of 1973, recalls fighting back the tears as Red Rum completed his historic third win in 1977.

At about that time, Mike became equally fascinated by the Flat racing scene which was dominated in those days by Henry Cecil and his stable jockey Joe Mercer. Kris, a brilliant miler who won 14 of his 16 starts, became an early favourite while under both codes the incomparable Sea Pigeon was carrying all before him.

Mike remembers leaving school early on Champion Hurdle day to watch Sea Pigeon finally master his old rival Monksfield in 1980. He described it later as "the perfect race".

<center><b>Mike interviewing Sir Henry Cecil after Twice Over wins The Eclipse Stakes at Sandown.</b></center>
Mike interviewing Sir Henry Cecil after Twice Over wins The Eclipse Stakes at Sandown.

That Mike should follow a career in racing was not any foregone conclusion, although being thrown out of an A-level maths class for reading The Sporting Life under the desk might have been a portent! He went to Keele University to study economics and history where he also represented the university at tennis and was also a regular five-a-side football player.

Having tried - and failed - to find employment in racing, he took a job working for the Exchequer and Audit department. During a tea break, he found an advert in The Sporting Life - Timeform were looking for an editorial assistant. Having got through the famous 50 questions interview from Reg Griffin, Mike was very proud to join the company in the summer of 1984.
"I owe Reg so much for giving me the chance to work in racing. He was a wonderful mentor and Timeform is like the university of horse racing - there simply is no better place to learn and understand this great sport."

The founding of the Racing Post two years later in 1986 meant that there were jobs aplenty going in racing journalism and Mike joined The Sporting Life Weekender, at the same time as Simon Holt and Tony Elves, working under the editorship of Neil Cook. At that time, there were opportunities to write features and do tipping shifts (Man On The Spot) for the daily Sporting Life and it was also then that Mike first had the opportunity to try out some broadcasting when Tony Fairbairn signed him up as part of the Racecall team.

<b>Agent for Willie Carson. (Photo circa 1990 going by the size of the phone!).</b>
Agent for Willie Carson. (Photo circa 1990 going by the size of the phone!).
Broadcasting legends Peter Bromley, Raleigh Gilbert and Christopher Poole - and also a young Cornelius Lysaght - were also in situ during the time when pictures had still not appeared in betting offices. Racecall gave listeners a chance to hear the racecourse commentary over the telephone.

Through the recommendation of his former Timeform colleague Jim McGrath, Mike took up a position as Willie Carson's agent at the end of 1988 with the brief to try and add one more jockeys' title to the five-time champion's haul.
"I had my L plates on for the first year but then Willie and I enjoyed some fabulous seasons. But, to my frustration, Pat Eddery was impossible to catch. Mind you, it did help that he had a full-time agent - his brother-in-law Terry Ellis. I was combining the job with my duties at the paper and the closest we got to Pat was 10 behind. But we must have ruffled his feathers as I received one or two abusive phone calls from Terry in those days!"


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