It is not rare for an eight-year-old girl to be fascinated
by horses. But when I was eight, I was more than just fascinated by the
majestic creatures. I was rather obsessed with them. Having grown up around
them, my love for horses was forever growing. Barrel racing, western pleasure,
and trail riding were few among many equine activities I enjoyed at that age.
But Thoroughbred racing was one equine aspect I had yet to fall in love with.
That changed on the first Saturday of May in 2004. It was
not the first Kentucky Derby I watched, but it was the first one that was
memorable to me, though I now am captivated by each edition of the Run for the
Roses. But the story of an underdog horse that had overcome great adversity
touched my young heart and as the gates flew open to unleash the Thoroughbreds
into the journey of the prestigious race, I found myself cheering for Smarty Jones.
From the moment the chestnut colt dashed through the mud to
attain Kentucky Derby glory, I have been in love with the sport of horse
racing. That day marked the beginning of a keen passion, which has only found
more growth in the years that have since elapsed. Multiple trips to the track
have been made, several visits to prestigious farms have been attained, hundreds
of pages of industry information have been read, hours upon hours of watching
racing have been accounted for, and dozens of racehorses – ones running at the
highest level and ones running in the claiming ranks – have been adored.
It is difficult to pinpoint a single greatest moment in my
“horse racing life.” Perhaps it was leading my beloved Miss Fifty onto the
track at Churchill Downs at the age of fourteen amidst the Breeders’ Cup
atmosphere, or maybe it was seeing the great Zenyatta for the first time.
Possibly it was standing along the edge of the winner’s circle as Royal Delta
and Drosselmeyer entered the enclosure after their 2011 Breeders’ Cup
victories, or perhaps it was witnessing, up-close, Royal Delta capture her
second consecutive Ladies’ Classic victory. It is impossible to choose my
favorite personal horse racing moment and I don’t view that as a problem, as I
know I am blessed to have experienced such great moments.
To combine my love of horse racing and writing, I formed my
own blog, Past the Grandstand, on Blogger in August 2011. Blogging about an
assortment of horse racing topics, I have thoroughly enjoyed writing about
horse racing – my true passion – and sharing my racing experiences with other
Thoroughbred enthusiasts. It is with great eagerness that I anticipate also
blogging on Horse Racing Nation, an incomparable site for racing fans to gather
and celebrate the great sport of horse racing, the sport in which I discovered
my passion back in 2004 when a muddy chestnut galloped into the heart of a
Thanks for allowing me to join the team, Horse Racing Nation!