This next stable were about to introduce appears to be a quiet and introspective character. He just won the GRAN class one league title for the second consecutive year, which is no mean feat.
Without further ado lets give a BIG warm TK Nuts welcome to the stable known as Rubin Jets;
Q – Can you tell us a little about yourself?
• I’m Rubin Sano and one morning I woke up to find I had become a race horse stable manager in Munich. This was a shock because I don’t speak German and I don’t know how to whisper to horses. I’d never even ridden a horse, let alone trained one. But there are worse fates. After a while I discovered how to set myself a weekly salary of $101,000 and I’ve been relatively comfortable since.
Q – How did you come across TK?
• Nobody I know has ever entered the world of TK. If I ever confess to people about TK they just look embarrassed, and my wife gives me a look of withering pity when I tell her that today a new foal is to be born in the stable, or that I have to set the alarm for 3am to meet a jockey coming in from holiday at the airport.
Q – Any particular reason you named your stable Rubin Jet?
• Back in the late 1960s there was a band called the Mothers of Invention who released their fourth album Cruising with Ruben and the Jets. It was a kind of weird mix between doo-wop, bubblegum and satire. The brainchild of this project was the legendary Frank Zappa. And so I adopted the name and lifted the original album sleeve as my stable logo.
Q – You started the game in 2014; do you still remember your first race?
• I was so clueless that I needed to be given links to a couple of stakes races from helpful Track Kings at Gran to get me started. I was thrilled to win them both. Later it was explained that the rest of the field were entirely bots. No matter. Beat the bots and the humans come later. That was the theory.
Q – If you could start over, what would you do differently?
• I really don’t want to start over. I’m happy to continue trying to learn from past mistakes and move forward.
Q – Biggest influence on you early on – stable that you looked up to?
• I would not have continued with TK after initial bewilderment but for being mentored by one of the game’s greats, Smoggie of Smogville. Everyone in the game knows Smoggie. He is one of the great enthusiasts who has consistently beaten horses of 20 or more OR points above his own.
The other TK manager I looked up to in the early days was The Edge because he told me when I got out of C4 at Gran and rose to C1 I would understand what a great manager he was. Sadly, he left the game before I reached C1.
Q – What is one thing you wish you knew when you started the game?
• That five years later I would still be searching for how the game works.
Q – Tell us something about your horses and the direction your stable is going. What are your short and long term goals?
• I’ll be defending my C1 title at Gran for the second season. Longer term, I need to get into Cup racing. I’ve only once competed in a World Cup and that was several seasons ago when my horse Greta Garbo finished 4th or something in an Epic. I need to get my head round planning for Cup competitions, but it’s tricky when the early rounds are sprints and the final is anything from sprints to an epic, or your jockey packs it in halfway through for a holiday.
Q – Which do you consider to be the best horse you have trained to date?
• Pass. The best is yet to come.
Q – Which horse in your stable currently is your favorite and why?
• The 10yo mare Libra has won her last 11 C1 league races at Gran and set up a regional record in one of them. That’s pretty heady stuff by Rubin Jets modest standards.
Q – Any memorable races that stand out for you?
• I think the only one people might remember my stable for was winning a C1 race with an apprentice jockey Leena Shintani on board. That earned a TK Nuts special achievement award, which I was well chuffed about.
Q – How do you plan a race, do you weigh up the opposition or run your own race?
• No disrespect to the opposition, but I run my own race. Even if I knew all about the opposition I wouldn’t know how to plan a race accordingly.
Q – Which retired horses in the game has left the biggest impact on you?
• Rosa Luxembourg.
Q – What is the one thing you want to achieve most in TK?
• I would like to maintain interest for as long as there are still people who want to race.
Q – Three current horses owned by other stables that you wish you had owned, and why?
• Any three of Ped’s Dixon Racing horses, so I could learn the “secret” of breeding, training and racing.
Q – Any interest in real life horse racing?
• I ran a book when I was at school and, frankly, that was the last time I studied form.
THOUGHTS ON THE GAME
Q – If you had to name the most important things or features in the game that have kept your interest here in TK, what would those things or features be? And, why?
• The thing that has kept me engaged is just how complex the game is.
Q – Name a few things you would like to see changed on TK?
• I used to argue for more training hours until I realised there’s no point in looking for changes that are never going to happen in the game. TK is not going to develop any further and we have to accept it for what it is.
Q – What is the one feature of the game you cannot get your head wrapped around?
• Weather forecasting.
Q – What is the best advice you’ve been given in playing this game?
• Don’t breed too early and establish financial stability first.
Q – What is one thing people would be surprised to know about you?
• I think it would surprise people that I was ever asked to do an interview for TK Nuts.
Q – How do you like to spend your free time?
• Furniture restoration, reading, travel and watching football.
Q – Who in the game makes you laugh the most and why?
• Lozzy. Need I explain?
Q – What is your favourite food?
• Raspberries in vanilla soya yoghurt.
Q – What kind of music do you like? And who is your favourite musician?
• Bob Dylan. Neil Young. Tom Waits.
Q – Do you sing in the shower? If so, which songs?
• .The Martini advert song. That’s the right one, that’s Martini.
Q – What has been the most embarrassing moment of your life?
• Filling in these questions.
Q – Who in Track King is on the guest list for your ideal dinner party and why?
• I’m a teetotal diabetic. I wouldn’t inflict my strict diet on anyone.
Q – What three things would you take to a desert island?
• A MacBook Pro, a Zippo lighter and any painting by Velazquez.
Thank you for taking the time to sit down and interview with TK Nuts.