Heads I Win, Tails You


By Kent

“How about the race course”, Geoff suggested.

We’d been discussing possible detecting sites but hadn’t been able to come up with much. I had a few possibilities but the amount of grass due to the recent rain and warm weather made it impossible to get a coil anywhere near the ground.

We’d visited Geoff’s suggested site a few times in the past – a country picnic race course on private property – and while it had yielded hundreds of English and pre-decimal coins, we’d pretty well flogged it and no doubt the coins wouldn’t be as numerous. At least the grass would be short, the annual races having been held just a few days previously.

Next morning saw us on site about 8.30am. The landholder had once again kindly given us permission and unlocked the paddock gate. 

Our first target was the betting ring for a bit of petrol money and while we both scored a few dollars, the noise eventually got too much for me. Working in all-metal, the ground was just one continuous barrage of sound being a graveyard of bottle tops, ring-pulls and other rubbish. I moved out further where there was less trash and hopefully an old coin or two.

I decided to detect a spot behind the horse stalls where an old fence had been pulled out but almost an hour passed before the hint of a good signal caught my attention. For some reason it was very elusive and I’d dug a hole nearly big enough to bury a horse before the target revealed itself as a worn 1872 English shilling. A silver coin wasn’t a bad start to proceedings and worn or not, I’ll take them all day long.

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