Tag: steeplechase

109th My Lady’s Manor Steeplechase Races – Saturday, April 13

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Purchase your passes today for the 109th running of the My Lady’s Manor Steeplechase Races. Slated for Saturday, April 13, this is one of Maryland’s oldest and most competitive days of timber racing and will benefit The Manor Foundation. Presented by PNC, gates will open at 10:00am with the first race scheduled for 1:30pm.

The afternoon includes four steeplechase races, as well as live bluegrass music from the Mayo Family Band and horse-themed merchandise tents and exhibits. This year, the Manor Races will also feature food trucks, serving delicious food all day long. Kids will be able to enjoy stick pony races at noon (for kids 10 and under). There will also be a lead-line race for jockeys under the age of 7 and their ponies at 12:30 pm. Have a child that would like to participate? Entries can be emailed into [email protected] by 4/8. Come enjoy a fantastic day with family and friends on the manor!

It’s Spring in Maryland, Time for The Steeplechase Races

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The My Lady’s Manor Steeplechase Races, one of Maryland’s oldest and most competitive days of timber racing, will be run for the benefit of The Manor Foundation. Since 1909, this exciting day of equestrian sport has marked the beginning of spring in the Harford County countryside! The afternoon includes 4 steeplechase races: The My Lady’s Manor Steeplechase Race with a $30,000 purse (and the first of Maryland’s Steeplechase Triple Crown), The John Rush Streett Memorial (two divisions $15,000 purse in each), and The John D. Schapiro Memorial ($15,000purse). ​The day is presented by PNC.

In addition to the races, guests will enjoy live bluegrass music, food vendors and horse-themed merchandise tents and exhibits. The paddock, where horses are paraded before the jockeys are mounted, is open to the public. Gates open at 10:00 a.m. The first race is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. This is a rain or shine event.

The My Lady’s Manor Steeplechase Races are held on Jarrettsville Pike (MD 146) at Pocock Road in Monkton, Maryland. Admission is via parking passes; no additional admission ticket is required to the races.
Click to learn how to purchase tickets and for additional information on event details.

’60 Minutes’ to Feature Segment on Maryland Hunt Cup This Sunday

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Amid the building hype for the Kentucky Derby early next month, CBS is taking the time to spotlight a different high-profile horse racing event that covers far more ground.

Extraordinary Equestrians Gear up for April Races

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What could be more Maryland than a fine Saturday in April spent picnicking on the grass while taking in some thrilling steeplechase races?

My Lady’s Manor Steeplechase Races to Benefit Ladew Topiary Gardens

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On Saturday, April 16th, the My Lady’s Manor Steeplechase Races, one of Maryland’s oldest and most competitive days of timber racing, will be run for the benefit of Ladew Topiary Gardens.

UPDATE: Patrick Smithwick and “Flying Change” Win Top Honors

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UPDATE:  Local writer, teacher, and jockey Patrick Smithwick won last week  the Tony Ryan Book Award for his memoir, Flying Change: A Year of Racing, Family and Steeplechasing.  The $10,000 prize and a custom-designed Irish crystal trophy were presented to Smithwick on April 10 during an evening reception at Castleton Lyons farm in Lexington, Kentucky.

See our interview about the book and racing with Smithwick below. Congratulations Patrick!

Flying Change book jacketOriginally published on April 5, 2013 – Local writer Patrick Smithwick’s book, Flying Change: A Year of Racing, Family and Steeplechasing has been named a finalist for the seventh annual Dr. Tony Ryan Book Award, a prize for the best of racing literature. Flying Change, about Smithwick’s decision — and the impact on his family — to get ready in just nine months to ride in the Maryland Hunt Cup, followed Racing with My Father, which was also a finalist for the Tony Ryan Book Award, about growing up with his father Paddy Smithwick, a famous steeplechase jockey.

The $10,000 first-prize winner will be announced on April 10 at Castleton Lyons, a Thoroughbred facility near Lexington, Kentucky.

With My Lady’s Manor, the Grand National and The Hunt Cup a few weeks away, we thought we’d catch up with Smithwick, who heads the English department at Harford Day School in Bel Air, to learn more about the acclaimed book.

What compelled you to set the nine-month goal for yourself?

“Has He Won?” Jockey’s Dad Caught Hunt Cup Victory News after Dramatic Delay

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Thanks to unlucky timing, Lee Stierhoff — Maryland Hunt Cup 2012 winner James Stierhoff’s proud dad — was on a long-planned getaway in Sedona, Arizona, this weekend while his son took the late swift lead on Twill Do. Lee, 59, an aspiring plein air painter and Baltimore native living Rodgers Forge, saw his son’s first Hunt Cup victory in 2010, but this year asked a friend to help him and his girlfriend, fiction writer Jen Grow, listen in by cell phone.

“It was an amazing experience,” Lee says. “We asked Stephan [Kowalczyk who provides audio tech support for the Cup], ‘Would you mind calling me and holding the phone near a speaker so I can hear?

“The whole race I was more interested in hearing the name Twill Do announced because that meant the rider was on the horse. We heard at one point Twill Do was trailing — but I thought I heard failing and [Jen] thought she heard sailing. [James had] been in last place for three quarters of the race until he decided it was time to turn the engines on. He knew Twill Do had a lot of energy left — he asked the horse to go faster.”

I asked Lee how James, 25, got his passionate riding start and to describe for Baltimore Fishbowl the childhood discipline involved in the making of an “amateur” equestrian champ.

Straight from the Jockey’s Mouth: A Maryland Hunt Cup Re-Cap

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Photo by Chandler Willett.

The EMTs thought that Billy Meister was crazy, or concussed, or something. Meister had fallen off at the seventeenth fence in the Maryland Hunt Cup, but he was acting like his horse was still in the race, waving off the EMTs who were blocking his view of the field. “My horse is doing well!” he told them.

It turns out that Meister knew exactly what he was talking about. The horse he wanted to get a look at was Twill Do, a twelve-year old gelding ridden by James Stierhoff who looked like he had a good chance of repeating an earlier victory. In 2010, Stierhoff had stepped in to ride Twill Do in the 2010 Hunt Cup after Meister, the horse’s trainer, broke his pelvis just before the race. It was Stierhoff’s first time in the Hunt Cup, and he’d just barely recovered from the flu; expectations were not high. But Stierhoff and Twill Do ended up winning the race by five lengths — and now they had the chance to do it again. That’s what Meister was so eager to see.

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