Saturday, August 11, 2012

A Visit to the Spa

No summer season journey to Saratoga is complete without spending at least one morning trackside. I was able to sneak away before my duties peddling horses at the select yearling sale officially began and got to spend a few hours watching horses work out and enjoying a few races.

Here are some pictures:

Okay, this is NOT Saratoga. I detoured to Beulah Park, currently closed for the season, on my way to Saratoga Springs. Here, shot through a locked chain-link fence, is the homestretch and toteboard.
I had to include Dayatthespa (a two-time Grade 3 winner trained by Chad Brown) in this post, right? Seen here galloping over the main track at Saratoga.
Robin Smullen hugging Jersey Town, a dual Grade 1 winner, and a very kind horse to be around.
Jersey Town, owned by Chuck Fipke and trained by Barclay Tagg.
Dual Grade 3 winner Hunters Bay, owned by Stronach Stables and trained by Reade Baker.
Unknown horse.
Flashy 2-year-old colt Rei (Leroidesanimaux - Humoristic), a $490,000 OBS March purchase by Deuce Greathouse, in training with Mark Casse. Shown here with Shaun Bridgmohan up, on their way to Rei's first gate breeze.
Blurry, but this is a better view of Rei's amazing markings on the left (and only the left) side of his face.
A random Todd Pletcher horse. I just love how happy both horse and rider look as they break into a run.
This loose filly took a couple of turns around the Oklahoma training track.
I am *pretty* sure this is Grade 3 winner (and Classic-placed) filly Banimpire, trained by Chad Brown. She's the same shade of dark bay as her broodmare sire Kris S. Her second dam is by Nureyev out of Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe winner Detroit.
Do horses smile? It looks to me like multiple stakes winner (and Grade 1-placed) Beau Choix, trained by Barclay Tagg, is smiling...
Groom plays with the forelock of stakes winner Munnings Sister, another Fipke/Tagg horse.
Part of the charm of Saratoga, this across the street from the racecourse.
Four Star Sales sold this Bernardini colt out of Dawn Chorus to Fox Hill Farm/Tom McGreevy, agent for $700,000 -- the sixth highest-priced yearling at the Saratoga select sale.
Four Star also sold this great-walking Dixie Union colt out of Risk for $410,000 to John C. Oxley. (The background leaves much to be desired but without much space, we had to go with the flow.)
Another detour, to Niagara Falls. Can you imagine the stunning view from that ferris wheel?
Niagara Falls: American Falls in the foreground and Horseshoe Falls in the background.