Sunday, April 21, 2013

Steeple Chase

Since we've moved to South Carolina, the new experiences I've been able to enjoy seem to be endless.   First an exciting introduction into Hockey and now, we've been to our first steeple chase.  The event began mid afternoon on Saturday, and on the way, we enjoyed a delicious breakfast at Cracker Barrel: my most favorite breakfast place of all! 

 Here is Simon making a better score than me at the little peg game on the tables. 

After that treat, we met up with Kayla, from Simon's work, and Justin, her boyfriend to ride to the event together.  We were blessed with completely perfect weather, despite the fact that the light breeze tricked us all into not putting on sunscreen and therefore leaving with a bit of a burn.  :)

We were at the steeple chase with Simon's company: Consultex Systems, so we were with many of his coworkers, their families, and some friends of his boss Arne.  It was a rather large group huddled into the space, but it made it all the more fun.  

Here is part of the spread we snacked on throughout the afternoon.  Arne's dad is French, and we joke that we can always count on bread, cheese, and salami.  It really never fails.  haha 

Many of the horses came out at the beginning, trotting around before it all began.   

This is a shot of the empty track and an example of the beautiful sky! 

So, the difference, I learned, between a Steeple Chase and a Derby is that, along the track, they have hurdles for the horses to jump over.  Each group is made up of about 6 horses, and they do 3 laps around the mile-ish long track and the first to cross the finish line is the winner.  6 races in total went on that day, including one pony race.  

Before the whole thing began, several small carriages were paraded through the start/finish line area.  
Here is one of the little carriages. 

Arne's area was right in front of the finish line so we got to see the most exciting parts of the races! 
Here is a little three-shot action of the ending moments of one of those races.  
(You can just make out the hurdle in the background) 

The race winner: #5  

Some between-race chit chat

Me and Susana, the sweet wife of one of Simon's coworkers: Alex

Big smiles.   

 Kayla and Justin spectating, and our neighbors having a big time in the background.  

 Justin, Kayla, Kinsey, Brad, Simon, and me
 as we walked back to the cars lugging the coolers, chairs, etc.  

Needless to say, we were worn out after nearly 6 hours of race watching.  We were thankful for Arne and his generosity for providing such fun "work" events for us to enjoy.   As always with this group, we had a marvelous time, enjoyed delicious food with lots of laughs, came home a few pounds heavier and little bit crispier.  

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