The Kentucky Derby

2015 Kentucky DerbyI love to hear people talk about horses.  No matter what the topic of the conversation, if it involves horses it is always a conversation filled with passion and with real horse people, respect.

I had the unbelievable opportunity this past weekend to attend the Kentucky Derby with a group of 52 people that NCM Honoree Dr. Eleanor Green and her husband Dr. Jim Heird put together.  Eleanor is the Dean of the Vet school at Texas A&M, and Jim is a professor and Head of the Equine Initiative at A&M.  The wonderful group were all people involved in the equine industry and certainly horse people!

Friday was a day to be remembered as we visited five of the most venerable horse farms in Lexington and were given unbelievable tours and access.  It was pretty exciting to see American Pharoah’s sire Pioneer of the Nile as we toured Winstar Farms…and even more exciting when we got to see American Pharoah win the next day!image1

During our visit to the farms and at the Derby the next day I was just trying to soak up as much as I could as I had the opportunity to be around this group that had so much horse knowledge.  With each conversation there were lessons to be learned and history to be remembered.

But perhaps the most important thing I came away with is the absolute belief that with the renovation that we are doing on the second floor putting the focus on the relationship of women and horses is the exact right thing to do.  To pay tribute to this magnificent animal is such an honor and to focus women and horses such a special way to tell the great stories of both.

I also came away from the trip with an even deeper respect for Honoree Julie Krone, the only woman to win a Triple Crown race when she won the Belmont in 1993.  It is one thing to watch a race on television but being there and seeing the power and speed of the horses racing is a completely different experience.  Here’s to you, Julie!