When we came back from our trip to visit relatives in Indiana this past April, we stopped for a few days in Kentucky, including the Lexington area. We used to visit Keeneland racetrack every year, but our annual sojourn went by the wayside after we bought the country acreage. So we made a point of securing reservations for a couple days at Keeneland again!
The Keeneland complex is the southern gem of the horse racing world. It has been operating for 76 years. In addition to the spring and fall season of races, which showcases the world’s best horses and horsemen, it includes stables, exercise facilities, and sales. In fact, Keeneland is currently the world’s largest thoroughbred auction company, with annual gross sales of about $400 million.
Steeped in tradition, the facility is impeccably maintained and operated by highly professional and polite staff. And it is a glorious place to visit in the springtime!
We had reserved seats located close to the finish line and high enough in the grandstands for a terrific view of the racetrack. We’re certainly not high rollers when it comes to the wagering part. We go for the fun of it! We always spend more for beverages and food than we do on betting. Our daily betting budget is $20 each. Jim won a few dollars here and there, but I managed to lose every $2 bet I placed! Lady luck wasn’t with me. But we sure did enjoy seeing the “ponies” run and listening to the roar of the crowd as the horses raced to the finish! (And the Kentucky burgoo was divine.)
After spending a couple of days at the track, we went on a road jaunt through the picturesque landscape around Lexington before heading back home to Knoxville. We decided to do some “freestyle” photography, venturing out without a plan or a destination. The country roads around Lexington are abundantly filled with thoroughbred horse farms. But the likelihood of finding a good place to pull off on the narrow country roads and some beautiful horses near the road are next to nil. We knew the odds were against us for photo opportunities. But we were going to revel in the spring weather and the spectacular scenery.
Then, just when we least expected it, the “luck of the Irish” happened!
~~~ To be continued! ~~~