Top Four Reasons We’re Grateful for Spring

Pop Culture
Springtime at Keeneland is one of the highlights of the horse racing industry. (Penelope P. Miller/America's Best Racing)

Today is the first day of spring, and the team at America’s Best Racing is eager to share the reasons they’re excited about the changing of the seasons.

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Mike Curry: Sundays at Keeneland

For nearly all of the time we’ve lived in Lexington since relocating from the East Coast in March 2005, my work schedule has been Tuesday through Saturday, so I can be in the office or at the racetrack for Saturday’s big races. What that means is that Sunday has been the traditional Keeneland day for our family as it grew from a horse-racing crazed couple to a family of three to the fab four we are today. Throughout the spring meet we have extended family visit almost every weekend and take them out for a day at the races at my favorite venue. A bowl of burgoo when there’s a nip to the air, ice cream for the kids on a warm spring day, and always great racing in the heart of horse country. When I think of spring in Lexington, I always think of Sundays at Keeneland.

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Penelope Miller: Triple Crown Countdown

Spring is my favorite time of year for a very simple reason: We get to see the best 3-year-olds in the nation battle it out for a spot in the Triple Crown races. All across the country, from Florida to California, New York, Arkansas, and Kentucky, major Kentucky Derby prep races are at their peak. Fans can go to any track hosting a major Derby prep and possibly see the next racing superstar. Spring is all about possibility, and nothing embodies that spirit more than the road to the Triple Crown.

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Christina Moore: Foals!

I can’t think of spring without imagining foals frolicking in green pastures with their moms. Although the babies have been arriving since January, when the weather is finally pleasant and the trees and flowers are in bloom there is not much that can top a drive through central Kentucky to spot future champions lolling in the sunshine on a beautiful spring day. The rolling countryside and abundance of horses make living in Kentucky special, and this is reaffirmed each time the seasons change. The end of winter and emergence of new life each spring is just as magical in Kentucky as it is anywhere on Earth.

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Patrick Reed: Opening Night at Churchill Downs

Obviously, Keeneland and the two-day Kentucky Oaks/Kentucky Derby extravaganza are the main draws for spring racing in Kentucky, but I’ll highlight another race card that, over the past several years, has developed its own following. Churchill Downs kicked off night racing back in 2009, to immediate success, and in 2011, they moved the opening card of their spring meet to the evening. The track offers packages for seating and dining at various price levels, but I’ve always gone the general admission route and never had less than a good time, even a few years back when a brutal thunderstorm delayed the races midway through the proceedings. Opening night of the spring 2019 meet is on April 27, one week before the 145th run for the roses. It’s a great way to kick off Derby week.

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