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December 2, 2023

Having Horse Sense in Healdsburg

Saddling up for some equestrian considerations

It was racing day in Kentucky this past weekend. These horses were not there. I see these two most every day. They are good buddies, usually grazing side by side. It was unusual to see them lying down. 

Pastured horses don’t lie down much because they eat about 14-16 hours a day. They consume roughly 2% of their body weight daily, meaning a 1,000-lb horse nibbles up 20 pounds of grass. Horses are finicky about the grass they eat on pasture, roaming distances to find favorites. Lovely that the grass was sufficiently nutritious that they could lie down in green pastures.

The horses at Churchill Downs were not lying down last Saturday afternoon, racing in the 149th running of the Kentucky Derby.

Fun-facts horse quizzie—save for next year’s 150th Kentucky Derby party: 

1) Roy Rogers’ horse

2) Lone Ranger’s horse

3) Wilbur’s horse

4) My Friend _______

5) _________ of Chincoteague

6) National Velvet horse

7) Black ________

8) Horse Whisperer horse

9) War Horse horse

10) Vronsky’s horse

11) Don Quixote’s horse

12) 3 of 4 Horsemen of the Apocalypse

13) Alexander the Great’s horse

14) Napoleon’s horse

15) General Custer’s horse. 

Bonus: mint julep essentials.

Answers below but first a bit, no pun intended, on Secretariat.

Secretariat won the Kentucky Derby in 1973, 50 years ago, and his track record still stands. Racing “Sham,” a horse that beat Secretariat weeks earlier, Secretariat trailed Sham and then increased speed with every quarter mile, finishing in 1 minute, 59 seconds. Secretariat’s record still stands—one of only two horses to finish the Derby in under 2 minutes! The other horse is Sham.

Dubbed the most exciting 2 minutes in sports, Secretariat’s thrilling win at the Derby, plus being the first Triple Crown Winner in 25 years, plus winning the grueling Belmont Stakes’ 1.5 mile run in 2:24, leaving the field by 31 lengths, arguably makes Secretariat a GOAT, pun intended, Greatest Of All Time.

Horse quizzie answers: 1) Trigger, 2) Silver, 3) Ed, 4) Flicka, 5) Misty, 6) Pie, 7) Beauty, 8) Pilgrim, 9) Joey, 10) Frou-Frou, 11) Rocinante, 12) Death, Famine, War, Pestilence, 13) Bucephalus, 14) Marengo, 15) Comanchethe only survivor of Custer’s last stand.  Mint julep essentials:  1) bourbon, 2) bitters, 3) mint, 4) sugar, 5) water /ice, 6) silver/pewter mint julep cup.


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