Opening Day at Del Mar Races is all the time a prime of the calendar occasion in San Diego. However it was lacking one thing this yr. It had all the same old glitter, glamour and galloping — however no Brad McLellan.
For 35 years he was the go-to for overseeing reporting of opening day for KGTV Channel10, which like most different media in San Diego presents full-bore protection.
McLellan, now retired, admits he cherished this annual ceremony. He bought time away from the excessive stress job of operating an task desk in a broadcast newsroom.
“It was an opportunity for me to get out of the station and never must be listening to scanners,” he stated, including that he additionally didn’t must resolve which tales to ship information crews to cowl.
On the monitor, McLellan helped anchors, reporters and producers prep for protection, developed tales distinctive to the monitor, and oversaw 35 years of the “hat contest”the place prizes are given for various themes. “I interviewed all of the winners” he recalled.
One hat contestant specifically stands out, he recalled. It was the creation of a miniature Del Mar Grandstand and race monitor mounted on a hat.
“The horses had been on the monitor too. It was phenomenal. It was so effectively achieved. She had the tote board, she had every thing. She informed me it took her virtually 4 months to construct it,” he stated.
McLellan stated the girl couldn’t stroll two toes with out somebody eager to take an image along with her. However the draw back was that “after an hour her neck was about to interrupt,” although she did win a prize.
The media at Del Mar Opening Day usually observe related story traces. McLellan, who began following racing at age 12, is aware of the monitor, from backstretch stables to the Turf Membership.
And he would all the time be searching for a unique approach for a narrative.
He recalled that when he spoke because the voice of a horse who took viewers on a tour of the backstretch. The cameraman rode on the horse and shot over the horse’s ears whereas McLellan strolled alongside telling viewers what they had been seeing.
The horse was particularly vocal concerning the worker cafeteria. “The horse would say that is the place all of the people have breakfast and lunch. The meals doesn’t look very fascinating to me — no hay on the menu,” McLellan defined. “It was enjoyable and it confirmed a world viewers not often see.”
Kimberly Hunt, a 10news anchor, stated that “masking the day with Brad McLellan all the time make it particular.” They had been a staff for years and she or he recollects him as a “racing fanatic, knowledgeable on the trade” and “tremendous enjoyable man to be with on the monitor.”
She stated McLellan “all the time gave me the low-down on the horses and jockeys coming in for the meet.”
Former 10News Anchor Carol Lebeau by no means started working with McLellan at Del Mar as a result of she coated the season opening from the studio. However she remembers that “Brad appeared ahead to the racing season the way in which most of us appeared ahead to Christmas.”
Whereas McLellan was not overseeing the TV protection this opening day, he was pursuing one other ardour of his.
“I like to handicap as a result of to me, handicapping is like working a crossword puzzle. Each race has its personal traits. It has its personal factor that makes it fascinating,” he stated.