- Religion and Philosophy
Ron Dawson... Racing Tipster to Evangelist!
- Dawson jailed in syndicate fraud case - More Sports, Sport - The Independent
The protracted story of Classic Bloodstock II, a racing syndicate set up in the mid-Nineties, came to a close at Basildon Crown Court in Essex yesterday, when Ron Dawson, its managing director, and Andrew Irish, its accountant, were both jailed....
Today's hub is written with some sadness, but also with fond memories of a man I grew to love.
When I first met Ron Dawson, I was very wary and for good reasons.
I was living by faith and working our my salvation with fear and trembling, and as a relatively new believer trying desperately to be a faithful witness, but succeeding to be a pain in the butt Pharisee in training.
My 'tent-making' was book setting for a local publisher who produced journals on Spain, everything the ex-pat needed to know when they came here except what Spain was really like.
I was contacted by a 'ghost' writer who had been commissioned to write a book for Ron, and needed someone to set it for publication.
I say write, but in reality she was a very expensive typist, for Ron would broach no editing or correction (except in spelling) and had very set ideas about how 'his' book should be written and produced. Josephine (his ghost writer) was not able to change one word.
For me it made no difference, but for a professional writer it was akin to torture, and she seriously worried that it may affect her professional writing career if it were known that she ghosted the book and let it be published as it was written.
Ron was a real character, I say was because this article was inspired after I attempted to trace him and catch up on his news, not having seen him or Maureen his wife, since they went back to the UK, and then found out he had died, in 2007.
Now if Ron had died as he was when I first met him, I would be in sorrow, for he was definitely a lost soul bound for damnation, but fortunately Ron did not die in that condition, so I can rejoice, that he made it back home, and that when we next meet we can chat for eternity.
Anyhow, Josephine introduced me to Ron and we had a meeting, whereupon Ron explained that he had been 'fitted up' by Her Majesty's Custom & Excise department, and the Fraud Squad, and they were trying to put him in prison.
Ron's answer to this travesty of justice was to self publish his own book putting his side of the story and 'exposing' all the people who had conspired against him to stop his business of owning a Newmarket bloodstock racing stables as well as being a leading racing tipster.
I was seriously confused, I mean here was I, a reformed character, trying to maintain a close and personal relationship with God, through His son Christ, and there was an obvious shady character asking me to set his 'snow job' book for him.
My first reaction what, this is Satan trying to tempt me, and I almost refused on the spot, but my second thought was, "but I need the money", and somewhere between conscience and necessity, I remembered the scripture; A good man leaves an inheritance for his children's children, but a sinner's wealth is stored up for the righteous. (Proverbs 13:22).
It was enough for me to hang my hat on, but i decided to wait on the Lord for instruction as well and was reminded of the story of Sisera and Jael, where Sisera was the enemy of Israel, and sought refuge from deadly pursuit, after a battle in the tent's of Jael the wife of a leader of friendly tribe.
Jael fed him, let him sleep, and then drove a tent peg through his skull, killing him.
Now ostensibly she was a murderess....and a murderess of one of her husbands 'friends'....a taboo thing to do in Middle Eastern culture.
Ostensibly, forget it, she was a murderess plain and simple.
I remember when I first read that and saw that she was not punished, just seemed to appear, and then disappear from the bible story, I was troubled, I mean here was God allowing a murderer to get away with it, and in plain sight of anyone who read Judges chapter four!
What was this about?
Finally I got to Judges 5:31 and read "So let all thine enemies perish, O LORD: but let them that love him be as the sun when he goeth forth in his might. And the land had rest forty years.
Jael was vindicated because she succeeded in correctly doing what God instructed her to do, and in doing so she brought peace upon Israel for forty years.
Suddenly Ron's book seemed possible to work on, so I made it clear that I was a 'Born Again Christian' (and in those days I used that term) and he said I could be a trained monkey as long as I set his book, and we started work!
Ron would drive down from Benissa, in Alicante where he lived, in his gold Rolls Royce, and I would drive to meet him in my old and decrepit Fiat Tipo to deliver page proofs for his perusal.
The book progressed and in spare moments I discussed Christ with him, at first in a stilted fashion, for he was cold to the matter, but gradually in more depth, as we became friends and discussed his life and problems.
Eventually we were to deliver the book to him in final draft, for his consent to publish, and we delivered it to his villa on our way to England for a visit, in our decrepit car, held together with 'string and ceiling wax'.
We stayed for a day and night and enjoyed Rod and Maureen's company, and they were still cold about Christ, but we still witnessed.
The book was published, and Ron actually sold out of his 5000 copies, a rare feat for any publication, a miracle for a self published book by a first time author, and Ron made a profit, which was both unexpected and unheard of in the circumstances.
It must be said that the reason Ron made a profit was that he contacted all of his 'clients' in the tipster business, and all of his 'investors' in his bloodstock business (the one that he got busted for) and told them he was publishing the story behind his arrest and subsequent banning from the Jockey Club for fraud.
Needless to say, they all ordered a copy in the hope of understanding where their investments went to.
Ron signed most of them personally for added sincerity!
Then Ron came to faith, at his local church.
We had dragged him along when we stayed with him, and he quite liked the atmosphere, so he continued to attend, and came to know Christ personally as we say in the trade!
When I questioned him about this, he told me that what had tipped the balance for him was the fact that whenever we met, he saw that we (my wife and I) were happy and content, without a care in the world, whilst being as poor as church mice, whereas he was a millionaire and drove a Roll Royce, but was as miserable as sin.
He bought the walk and not the talk!
Having sold out his first print run, Ron now wanted to go to reprint, but with one vital difference, as he now wanted to tell the world about his new found faith and friendship in and with Christ.
This meant setting another couple of chapters and redesigning the cover to better sell the book, because when you add Christ and a salvation message to a secular book, you know that the enemy will try to stop it's publication, especially as the main character, Ron, was still a complete rogue through the entire book until the last 50 pages or so.
The book was a success again, though not as much as Ron had already sold most of his mailing list a copy of book one.
Ron, with his new found faith, decided to plead guilty to his fraud charge, honesty broke out in his life and he began to change character, as we should once we find Christ.
At his trial he wore a Jesus 'T' Shirt, with a slogan (like) 'Guilty as Sin, but Forgiven by Christ' which rather sunk his accountants not guilty plea!
Ron got a year, which he spent witnessing to the other white collar criminals he stayed with during his incarceration.
He viewed it as a time of bible study and the opportunity to have all his various ailments taken care of by the prison hospital.
We kept in touch and over a period of time I saw Ron change from serious business man to a peaceable believer who now spent his weekends driving his Fiat Panda car, covered with Jesus messages, to different beaches and handing out tracts on the beach front.
He would do wonderful things like sitting on an airplane with his bible praying before takeoff, and when the people around him looked peakish becuse of his prayer telling them the plane was safe because he was on it, and God wasn't ready for him yet.
Once a group of students all ordered soft drinks when the stewardess came around, having heard Ron's preach about Christ, and looked dumbfounded when Ron ordered a Gin and Tonic.
Ron never became self righteous, and always remembered that he started life as a welder in the shipyards in Barrow in Furness.
One day, a couple of years later, I received a letter in the post from Ron which floored me.
In the letter he described how he had lead thirty four family members to the Lord, and many others that he met on beaches and in bars, where he now went to witness, and thanked us for taking the time to tell them about Christ.
We may not have taken his surrender to Christ, but we did defeat his demons and clear his pathway to the Lord.
One sows, the other reaps!
I suddenly became aware that we believers will be meeting folk in eternity who will be our spiritual grand children, and great grand children, maybe even great great grandchildren.
People we have never met, but who have made it to eternity with Christ through those whose lives we have reached in Christ's name.
Ironically Ron died when he was just back to the UK after leaving Spain, he was ill and needed attention, he had an anuerism.
He died in Brandon, Suffolk which coincidently was where my ancestors came from.
God does not have grandchildren, we all need to come alone and in person, but we will, in the spiritual realm.
Go help create some descendents!