|At Racing-Europe, we believe the Sport is the Thing.
We enjoy a bet as much as the next person, but the main reason we go racing is for the event itself — the color, the excitement, the crowd, the outdoors — and to watch the marvelous Thoroughbred racehorses that put on the show.
Having family who raced on a modest scale in the 50s, 60s, and 70s, we also identify strongly with the owners who pay the bills and have the dreams — both sporting and financial — and the professionals who work with the horses on a day-to-day basis. We know all of us were orginally drawn to racing on some level by a fundamental love of the horse and the game — certainly there are easier ways of making a living or a return on an investment.
Our favorite tracks in America are Keeneland, Belmont, Saratoga, Santa Anita, and the very-much-missed Hialeah, where we saw our first live racing over forty years ago. Places that are beautiful even when they're empty, but so much more so when they're filled with a lot of people watching horses run. We like the steeplechase and point to point venues of Virginia, Maryland, and Pennsylvania, too.
We also like to see good horses. In the equine universe, all Thoroughbreds are fast; and most, even the cheap claimers on a fair circuit, have inside them from hundreds of years of selective breeding a strong desire to compete. But there's nothing quite like watching the best in a big race:
Memories like — the startling acceleration of Kelso, sweeping past Ridan and Jaipur on the far turn to win the Seminole; the hair-raising fleetness of Seattle Slew, blowing away his field as a 2-year-old in the Champagne; the wall of noise going deafening, as Broad Brush comes on to nail Ferdinand right on the wire in the Big 'Cap; the gut-check courage of Tiznow, staring down Sakhee to win the Breeders' Cup — memories like these will last you a lifetime.
Horse racing in Europe has all these things we like. Beautiful courses — each one different from any of the others, filled on big days with knowledgeable and enthusiastic crowds. Big-money races — in a fascinating variety of distances and conditions, some with histories going back over 200 years. Good horses — arguably better than the ones that are running in the U.S. today. And all of it packaged in a way that's refreshingly and entertainingly different from the way we do it here.
So — as much as we still love racing in America, right now we think the "show" is better in Europe. We hope you will consider joining us to see for yourself.
Racing photo courtesy The Jockey Club
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