Thursday, April 9, 2009

Rolex change o' plans and 10 reasons to go to Rolex 09

The restaurant we picked initially won't reserve a place for large parties, so we're going with Ramsey's Diner on 496 E. High Street in Lexington. Still at 7pm Saturday. Email me at behindthebit dot gmail dot com if you can come and haven't already signed up.

And for those of you not going to Rolex....

Why the h*ll not???? Did you know Mr. Big and Julia Steinberg will be there again? Mr. Big is now 20 years old. Talk about thoroughbred toughness. There are at least 10 reasons to not miss it, in no particular order:

  1. Shopping. Specifically, a trade fair that rivals anything I've ever seen, and it's not all super-expensive stuff! On Sunday, everything is marked down, too.
  2. Course walks. You can go on a formal course walk with the big names like Jimmy Wofford or Karen O'Connor, but you can also trail along with more informally scheduled walks with the lesser knowns. My first year I went on a course walk with the youngest competitor.
  3. Cross country. It is just amazing to be so close to the horses and riders as the navigate the course on Saturday. Your heart pounds as they thunder toward you, and as they pass you can hear them breathing and see their expressions. The determination on the faces of horse and rider just blew me away. And I haven't even mentioned the course and the jumps. It is just way cool.
  4. Food. Well, not really. But there is a beer/wine tent and a salad bar.
  5. Free samples. I practically paid for my daily meals by picking up samples every day from Cortaflx -- enough for a month.
  6. Raffles and prizes. Did I mention I won a Stubben bridle? There are also raffles for barn ATVs, saddles, supplements, gift baskets, gift certificates, you name it.
  7. Show jumping. It's not, frankly, as polished as what you see in national or international show jumping competitions. The horses and riders are tired, and pushing themselves, and you really don't know what's going to happen, which makes it all the more exciting.
  8. Dressage. Lots of the horses are thoroughbreds, and you get a chance to see thoroughbreds competing against each other in dressage. Lots of Irish horses too.
  9. Parking and tickets. Free, and cheap, and easy. It's a short walk from the lot to the show grounds.
  10. People watching. Rich people in rich-people tents, people camping out, die-hard horse people, local folks just enjoying the sights, young, old, dressed up, dressed down, you name it! Oh, and great demonstrations from mounted police, pony clubbers, etc.
  11. Okay, eleven. Bus trips to local sights and of course, the Horse Park itself.

    If you can't go this year, maybe this is a good time to make plans for next year? At any rate, I'll try to capture some highlights on video.


  1. Wish I could go. But it's a few thousand miles too far. Enjoy.

  2. Sill game, and Ramsey's is awesome!

    But that's the Man O' War location, the one on E. High is the original and slightly smaller.


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