Saturday, February 27, 2010

Scottsdale 2010 road trip, part 5

Before leaving on our weekend road trip to the Scottsdale Arabian Horse Show, I looked up some local Phoenix attractions and I found this place.When I read that the Saturday we'd be in Phoenix was Dollar Day at Turf Paradise, I knew we'd have to go. For $1.00 each, we'd be able to buy admission, programs, hot dogs, cokes, popcorn, etc. etc.

After driving around Phoenix and Scottsdale for a few hours, we made our way over to the racetrack just in time for lunch. We had debated about still going because of the cold rainy weather and decided that we could just go see a couple of races and leave when we wanted to. Plus, Nathan's hotdogs and Cokes for a buck each made for a cheap lunch!

Here are some tile wall murals at the entrance.

I found this information board inside. I wondered if the horses were actually using the special shoes on this day since it was raining.
It was 48 degrees, rainy, and breezy when we went out to the track for the first race. It has been so long since I've been to a horse race that I didn't really know what to expect.

The rain stopped just in time for the first race. They drove the tractor around the track to even up the footing. Then we watched the horses as they were led out onto the track. I hurridly ran in to the betting windows and placed a bet, $2 on the number 5 horse, Sedona Slick, to show because the three of us agreed that we really liked the name. This means that if he came in at all we would win something. We were glad to see he was a nice looking horse. Even though the track was sloppy with mud, the board said the track was GOOD. We watched as the horses left the starting gate at the far side of the track and rounded the turn. We saw one horse slip and fall on the inside of the turn. The jockey fell off and as the horses finished the race with our #5 horse somewhere in the middle of the pack, the #4 horse, Lute Oatson, came staggering in.

He had broken his leg in the fall. The horse was quickly unsaddled
and a tarp was held up around the horse as the Horse Ambulance came out onto the track.

As people watched the horrible drama unfolding with the poor horse, we noticed that the jockey was still laying on the ground. The ambulance arrived for her just as she was getting up. I wondered if she had been knocked unconscious by hooves or the ground. The poor horse was loaded up and everyone took one last look. As the ambulance drove off there was a huge thud and the door of the ambulance was shattered. It was absolutely horrible to imagine the pain that horse must have been in.
We were ready to leave. But I knew that if we did, we would only have bad memories so we agreed to stay for a couple more races.

I thought about cold hearted betting people who were cursing the horse that lost them their bet and wondered how the horse people were dealing with this tragedy.

But, as they say, the show must go on and the horses were already getting ready for the next race.

Here are some of the ponies waiting to lead their racing buddies to the starting gate.
My mom went and sat inside where she could view all the tv screens of the racetracks around the country along with a televised version of the actual races. My daughter and I went down to the paddock area to watch them saddle and mount up for race #2.

We bet on #3Thunderful and #4 Mischief Devon in an exacta box for $2. This means that both horses must finish first and second place, in either order, to win.

One of our horses placed but the other didn't so again, we didn't win.

I thought this horse was nice although I didn't like the chain on the lip for leading.

The houses nearby were beautiful!!!

I always laugh when I look at this photograph of the jockeys waiting for their rides. Notice the little guy on the right, picking his nose. See the emblem on his jacket and then notice his ears. Doesn't he look like a little monkey? Mean, I know, but, hee hee.
Here's a close up of a racing saddle. Not much to sit on, is there?
Here is where a lot of the action at a racetrack is.

I really like the next couple of photographs of this lady jockey talking and playing with the pony horse.

Here's the starting gate being moved into position.

Here is the jockey again, really talking to the horse now.
This horse was very fractious. He threw his rider in the enclosure and then again at the starting gate.
In the third race we won $3.80 with a $2 show bet on C My Secret.
However, the third race also had a track accident with a horse although we didn't see it. The ambulance again came out and picked up the horse. After that, they decided to do some much needed track maintenance.
Here, the horses are being led to the starting gate for the fourth race.
As they make the far turn the two horses we picked for an exacta box were still in the lead. Strawberry Sun Fun and Topless had the lead all the way from the starting gate almost to the finish line.
Then a challenger came up and it was quite a horse race ending with a photo finish for second and third place. We lost.
And a parting photo as we decided to take our leave before any more bad things happened.

To be continued. . .


Dan and Betty Cooksey said...

Thoroughbred racing is a tough business. I'm of two minds -- I enjoy watching the horses race, but I hate what happens to them sometimes.

Good pictures.


fernvalley01 said...

I love the races , but I have never witnessed a track accident , how terrible! thanks for the great tour so far

Jo Castillo said...

Amazing story and photos, I love going along on your trips. :)

Paint Girl said...

Love those murals!! You got some great pictures of the track.
Sorry you had to see that horse break a leg. That has to be sad to see that.
Can't wait to hear more of your story!! This is so fun reading about everyone's trip to Scottsdale! Although everyone got to go sightseeing, I had to work the whole time!

achieve1dream said...

It breaks my heart the way racehorses are treated. :( Maybe it's a good thing I've never been to the track. I'm enjoying your Scottsdale tour. :)