Monday, May 21, 2012
High Hope Steeplechase draws big crowd,
for festive day on behalf of four charities
The 45th running of the High Hope Steeplechase at the Kentucky Horse Park drew a big crowd for world-class hunt racing, tailgating and parties under tents, dog races, and a variety of family-friendly events – all to benefit four local charities.
The Central Kentucky Riding for Hope, Secretariat Center, Cardinal Hill Rehabilitation Hospital, and Kentucky Horse Park Foundation benefit from proceeds of the event.
The Arts & Craft Fair brought local artists and kid-friendly activities, including face painting, crafts, stickhorse races, and pony rides.
This year’s steeplechase races include a new ladies-only race, a one mile flat race on sports horses, the Sportswoman’s Challenge race.
The Steve Canyon Award – name for a race horse who distinguished himself in steeplechasing – is given each year to an individual or organization that has supported Bluegrass steeplechasing. It was awarded this year to Gerry O’Meara himself a rider who served as president of High Hope, won the 1996 Sportsman’s Challenge for Glennwood Farm and continues to ride in and support the steeplechasing community.
Winning jockeys and horses were:
Race 1 – The Bill O’Neil and David Mullins Memorial Maiden Claimer: William McCarthy on Royale;
Race 2 – $20,000 Starter Allowance Hurdel: Matt McCarron on Rainiero;
Race 3 – $15,000 Maiden Hurdle: Gustav Dahl on Monteagle;
Race 4 – North American Racing Academy’s “Catch a Riding Star” Classic: Mallory Strandberg on Ease.
Race 5 – The Sportswoman’s Challenge, a one-mile flat race on sports horses, women-only, Andrea Gibbs on Paisley.
Photos by Judy Clabes