The practice of leading media figures using Twitter ghostwriters has been revealed when it emerged that followers of Channel 4 racing commentator Simon Holt got more than they bargained for this week.
As the Mail Online site reveals today: “They ended up with racy updates after a saucy personal message was accidentally sent to hundreds of followers.”
The tweet: “Oh and by the way, I want your hot body tonight babe. xxxxx,” was posted on the Channel 4 horseracing expert's public timeline under the user name @PlumptonRaceDay.
But the racecourse has now revealed that the tweets on @PlumptonRaceDay are ghost-written for Holt by local newspaper racing columnist Jason Hall.
Hall writes for the Sussex Express newspaper and the racecourse's website.
Mail Online reports that the message, sent at 5.18pm on Tuesday, was accidentally sent to hundreds of followers, who then retweeted the message.
It explains: “It prompted another message at 5.43pm from Holt's account that said: ‘The previous message was sent in error! Please ignore ...... unless you are Cameron Diaz or my wife.".
It was intended as a private joke to Hall’s wife Nicola - but had gone viral.
But Hall says he is glad that everyone saw the funny side and the @PlumptonRaceDay account had subsequently seen its number of followers soar by about 100 to 335 within hours as a result.
Mail Online quotes Hall as saying: “I sent a text to my wife asking if she could get some milk and bread from the shop on her way home.
“She replied, ‘Sure’, and I tried to send another text as a joke that said I wanted her hot body as well and pressed 'send'.
“Unfortunately, I sent it to the wrong thread and it went out publicly on Twitter.
“It was a bit of humour and the upside is that the Twitter account has had a load more followers because of it, although I'm still waiting for an email from Cameron Diaz.”
Holt, who regularly commentates for the crowd at Plumpton racecourse, was actually off on Tuesday, but Hall continued to ghost-twitter as usual.
Mail Online quotes Hall as adding: "I've tried to get in touch with Simon to warn him that there might be some reaction, albeit amused reaction, to all this but I believe he's on holiday.
“But I'm sure he'll find it funny, if a little embarrassing. Fortunately everyone has seen the funny side."
Plumpton Racecourse spokeswoman Claire Sheppard is quoted by Mail Online as saying: "The race day Twitter account is managed by Jason Hall.
“He ghost-writes it on behalf of Simon Holt who commentates at the course and whose opinions are tweeted by Jason.
“This tweet was put on Twitter mistakenly and it was a joke. It has caused much amusement here but goes to show what can happen on Twitter if you're not careful.”
According to the media website, Holt, who has been Channel 4's top racing commentator for 12 years, was unavailable for comment. The tweet was deleted on Wednesday.