Wednesday, March 21, 2012

April is for Foals and Other Equine Fun in Lexington

Racing at Keeneland
Thoroughbred foals will be romping across the pastures as their grown up cousins prepare to race and compete in Lexington, KY.

2012 Spring Meet at Keeneland Race Course
Live Thoroughbred racing gets underway at Keeneland Race Course Friday, April 6th and continues through Friday, April 27th.  Racing is scheduled Wednesday through Sunday with post time daily at 1:05 p.m. The gates open at 11:00 a.m.  General admission is just $5! The annual Kentucky Derby prep race, the Toyota Blue Grass Stakes, is Saturday, April 14th.

Tip: The ground is pretty flat for hilly country, there are a few steps up to the stands but there are also elevators. All in all, it's a good track for Levelers and a fun atmosphere for the whole family.

In addition to a full line-up of graded stakes races throughout the meet, there are a variety of special events.

• Each Saturday morning, head out to the track for Breakfast with the Works.  This family-friendly activity begins at 7 a.m. with breakfast served in the Equestrian Dining Room, paddock demonstrations at 8:45 a.m., and free handicapping session at 11:30 a.m. 

• Looking for the perfect Kentucky Derby hat? Visit the Christine Moore Hat Trunk Show Wednesday, April 11 at the Keeneland Gift Shop.

For more information about the Keeneland Spring Meet, visit

Stadium for dressage and final jumping event.
World Class Dressage, Cross Country and Stadium Jumping
The excitement of the Rolex Kentucky Three-Day Event, presented by Bridgestone, and the Ariat Kentucky Reining Cup return to the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington, April 26-29.

This year's Rolex Kentucky Three-Day Event features selection trials to choose the U.S. Eventing team for the 2012 London Olympic Games.  The nation's best horses and riders will be competing in the hopes of earning places on the team for this summer's Olympics.
This year's Event also features the 15th Rolex USEF Four Star Championship for the U.S. Equestrian Team Foundation Pinnacle Cup, and is part of the HSBC FEI ClassicsTM.  Horses and riders from around the world will join their U.S. counterparts in competing for their share of $250,000 in prize money as well as a shot at the $350,000 Rolex Grand Slam of Eventing.

This is awarded to any rider who wins Rolex Kentucky, Mitsubishi Motors Badminton and Land Rover Burghley Four Star Events in succession.  Former Rolex Kentucky champion William Fox-Pitt of Great Britain, who won his record sixth Burghley championship last fall, will be seeking to win a second leg of the Rolex Grand Slam at Kentucky in the hopes of joining Pippa Funnell of Great Britain, who won it in 2003, as the only rider to win the Rolex Grand Slam. Visit for more information.

Tip: Dressage and Stadium Jumping portions are held in the stadium and they've taken the hills out of the access paths.

Following the Cross Country event can involve a lot of walking over hilly terrain. However, one of the first jumps you come to entering the course, the Lake Jump, is also one of the most exciting to watch.
Jumping into the lake.

Horses approach, jump a large, brush-and-rails into the lake,
Jumping back into the lake.

gallop to shore, turn, jump back over a log into the lake then out and to another jump, all of which you can see from one vantage point.

Heading across the lake toward the yellow rail jump (far left) on the other side.

If you get hungry, Lexington has many fabulous restaurants. See post here, Aug. 17, 2010. For that sweet tooth, Stella Parks, pastry chef at Lexington's Table 310, has been named one of the Top Five Pastry Chefs in the Nation by the editors at Food & Wine! Read Stella's blog at and try her delectable creations at Table 310 in downtown Lexington.


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