Blonk 6OTB

6 of the Best – EPIC Risk Management’s Paul Buck

This week’s 6 of the Best comes from Paul Buck, CEO of EPIC Risk Management.

Continue reading to discover huge hopes for Preston North End, an easy best album choice and which topic provided a touch of innovation.

Best Holiday

Great question and a hard choice. Tempted to plump for an unbelievable honeymoon in Singapore and Bali in 2001 – to this day I would still class Singapore as my favourite city in the world, but I am going to go for a cricket tour to South Africa representing Lancashire in April 1993. We toured the whole spine of the country from Cape Town right up to Johnannesberg including safari’s, loads of cricket and we played one of the first ever cricket matches against a team with black players post apartheid. There were dozens of press there and I soon realised it wasn’t necessarily just to watch me play!

Best Sporting Experience

Loads to choose from!

Playing wise probably either playing football on the famous plastic pitch at Deepdale in a junior cup final in 1987 when I was 11 years old, or scoring my first ever century as a 12 year old for a village cricket team called Hesketh Bank (in Lancashire) v Southport Trinity CC.

In terms of proper sport, I am a massive Preston North End fan so the 4-0 play off final win v Swindon Town in May 2015 is right up there when Jermaine Beckford scored a hat-trick to promote is back up to the Championship. We haven’t quite managed to reach the Premier League yet, much to the amusement of the other lads at EPIC, but confident we will get there one day … maybe next year!

Best Album

This one’s easy! As an 18 year old, hitting adulthood and going to university Oasis were massive and they released the album ‘Definitely Maybe’. Every song on there is a classic and timeless still being played today. Every time you hear one of those tracks it brings memories back. Other than that I was a big Queen fan early on in life and more recently Ed Sheeran and Imagine Dragons.

Best Film

Again not an easy decision. I was considering a few different ones including Pulp Fiction, Shawshank Redemption and Sixth Sense but my favourite set of films were the Rocky series with Sylvestor Stallone. All of them brilliant in their own way but if I had to plump for one then Rocky 4 when he was up against Ivan Drago. The speech at the end may have been very staged but actually very true and inspirational! Always liked an underdog.

Best Book

Going to split this into two if I may.

From a business perspective I would go for ‘Five Dysfunctions of a Team’ by Patrick Lencioni. Anyone who is part of, or in particular runs, a team of any type should read this book for insight.

From an autobiography point of view I would say Paul Merson’s ‘How Not to be a Professional Footballer’. It is a brilliant insight to life as a footballer playing in the 1990’s in a top, top team whilst also suffering some personal issues including addiction. I have been fortunate enough to get to know Merse in recent years and he’s a top fella. We even share the same birthday!

Best Bet 

An interesting question for a recovered pathological gambler! In a 17 year gambling ‘career’ there were a lot of highs and a lot of lows which ultimately led to a rock bottom of pretty catastrophic proportions. These ranged from winning £179,000 on my own horse to losing over £250,000 in around 2 hours on an online casino.

With that in mind my best best was probably £2,800 on Fistral Beach (Paul Nichols / Ruby Walsh) in November 2011. It was 100/30 favourite and looked a cert. It ended up being pulled up but it was my last ever bet as a pathological gambler, and then the long and winding journey began to creating EPIC, building a great team and since becoming a leading force in advising the highest risk industries around vulnerability, sustainability and player protection. I needed to go through the journey to provide the authenticity that EPIC are renowned for.

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