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HRN Original Blog:
Around the Oval with Melaina Phipps
Posted Saturday, September 29, 2012
Super Saturday is here and with post-time on the East Coast just minutes away, thousands of fans are waiting anxiously to see if their favorite horses meet the Breeders' Cup "Win and You're In" challenge. One of my favorite BC races is the Filly and Mare Turf. Today's Flower Bowl at Belmont another name to the program for that race...
Posted Sunday, July 15, 2012
Visiting Belmont Park, it's difficult not to admire all the beautiful and colorful flowers and plantings that adorn every possible corner. I was surprised to learn where all that beauty originates . . . are you?
Posted Monday, July 02, 2012
When one thinks of a racetrack backstretch often the images that come to mind are of rows of barns, horses in various stages of being trained or cared for, and the daily comings and goings of vets, hay trucks, and horse vans. However, beyond that which is essential for the training and racing of horses, there hidden corners of the backstretch which expose the larger community that is Belmont Park.
Posted Tuesday, May 22, 2012
As we anxiously await the 2012 Belmont Stakes today's Proust Questionnaire, Racing Edition, introduces us to Belmont Stakes-winning jockey Heliodoro Gustines, who rode Stage Door Johnny to victory in the race in 1968.
Posted Thursday, April 26, 2012
Welcome to Spring at Belmont Park! This native New Yorker will be spending the season in the city and sharing my experiences with my HRN friends!
Posted Tuesday, January 17, 2012
Yesterday a new class of champions was crowned at the Eclipse Awards. Here are the results and reactions in the words of the winners.
Posted Tuesday, November 15, 2011
Say the word jackpot and most people think Vegas or Atlantic City. Among racing fans however jackpot brings to mind one of the richest the races ...
Posted Thursday, October 13, 2011
The GIII JP Morgan Jessamine Stakes, the last of the Breeders' Cup Challenge "Win-and-You're-In" Races hosted by Keeneland, runs today. The eighth race on the card, the $150,000 race will have 2yo fillies going 1 1/16m on the turf and offers the winner automatic berth into the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf race next month.
Posted Sunday, October 09, 2011
Which lucky lady will win instant entry into the Breeders' Cup Ladies' Classic? Post time is 5:45 for the Juddmonte Spinster Stakes at Keeneland today. Watch and find out!
Posted Saturday, October 08, 2011
Day two of the Keeneland meet has three more Breeders' Cup Challenge races on the card, including the GI Shadwell Turf Mile...
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Meet Melaina Phipps

I came to horseracing only about a decade ago. (And no, I am no relation to the celebrated racing family of the same name.) My equine interests prior to that began, as they do for most young girls, with riding lessons and horse shows, and ended up with me playing polo while a graduate student at UVA and thereafter. It was entirely unexpected that I should spend time on the backstretch at Saratoga in the summer and on the rail at Payson Park in Florida in the winter watching some of the best trainers and horses in the country work. But that’s where I found myself and where my interest in this wild ride of an industry took shape. I don’t exercise racehorses; I don’t work with a trainer.  I watch, I listen, I ask a lot of questions, and I learn.  I enjoy supporting equine charities. Sometimes I bet a little.

I leave the handicapping and serious race talk and examination to those more knowledgeable than I. What I’d like to share through Around the Oval are some of the myriad observations, stories, histories, events, charities, places, and personalities that make up the variegated landscape of the Thoroughbred racing industry. If you find any—or all—of it interesting, please leave comments. Have any particular interests you’d like to read about? Send word—suggestions are more than welcome! 

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