Derek Thompson (sports commentator)
||This biographical article needs additional citations for verification. (April 2013)|
He attended Guisborough Grammar School and gave his first commentary - on a point-to-point meeting - at the age of 15. His broadcasting career began at the age of 18 on local radio. In 1972 he was based in London working for BBC Radio Sport, for whom he covered a number of Grand Nationals alongside Peter Bromley, Michael Seth-Smith and Michael O'Hehir.
In 1981, he moved to ITV, where he appeared on World of Sport and midweek racing coverage. In 1985, he joined the newly formed Channel 4 Racing team as a presenter. He was also part of a team of three who helped to negotiate for the release of the kidnapped Epsom Derby winner Shergar. Thompson also commentates for At The Races and was a regular on talkSPORT radio.
On 26 June 2012 it was announced that Thompson would be stepping down from his duties for a short while as he was to undergo surgery to remove a tumour from near his bowel.
In October 2012, it was announced that Thompson would not be staying with Channel 4 Racing when production of the programme moves from High Flyer to IMG in January 2013. The new production company dropped Thompson along with fellow veteran John McCririck. He returned to BBC Radio for the duration of the Cheltenham Festival in 2013.
Since leaving Channel 4 racing, Thompson has developed the notorious "bucket scam" which involves racegoers writing their name & address on the back of a losing betting slip and placing it in a bucket in order to try and win a raffle prize. The unsuccessful participants are subsequently contacted and persuaded to join one of Thompson's tipping services. Statistics prove that these tipping services are not profitable with subscribers often losing considerable amounts of money.