National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame
The National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame is located on Union Avenue across the street from the historic Saratoga Race Course. The museum is a treasure-trove of everything that celebrates thoroughbred racing. Interactive displays, pictures, stories and texts. Much of the museum does not allow photography but we got shots where we were allowed to. Before we went in Bear posed with Seabiscuit, what a great film.
There was a display of Eclipse Award Winning photographs. We recognised Frankie Dettori’s classic dismount. The 2009 winner of the award was the lady and horse falling. The last one is the awesome 2005 winner
There is a tutorial by audio phone on how to work out the odds at betting.
The National Thoroughbred Hall of Fame. Here the greatest names in the sport’s past are remembered, be they equine or human. The best horses, jockeys, trainers, owners and breeders are all celebrated and honored.
Opposite the museum is the famous racetrack
The main attraction for a visit to Saratoga Springs and in the 1000 Places to See Before You Die book is the famous racetrack. The New York Racing Association is responsible for racing at three of New York’s premier race tracks; Aqueduct, Belmont, and Saratoga. Since 1958 the NYRA has been the steward of thoroughbred racing at these sites. The three hundred and fifty acre Saratoga Race Course is the oldest race track in America and was named one of Sports Illustrated’s ten best sporting venues in the United States. The track is operated by the New York Racing Association, the host of the best racing in America each summer from mid-July through Labor Day.
The track traces its roots to 1863 during the middle of the Civil War, when local entrepreneur John Morrissey opened the first thoroughbred track (dubbed Horse Haven) in Saratoga Springs where it remains to this day. The four day meet proved to be a great success and the following year the Saratoga Racecourse began operations across the street from Morrissey’s original site. The Travers is the oldest stakes race in America and it has been a highlight of each racing season since 1864 when a horse named Kentucky won the first edition of the race.
African American jockeys were predominant in thoroughbred horse racing from the time of the Civil War up until about 1900. Isaac Murphy, perhaps the most successful jockey of all time, having won more than one third of all the races he entered, was among the first inductees into the Horse Racing Hall of Fame in 1955. Sportswriter Red Smith once gave these directions from New York City to the Saratoga Race Course; “Drive north one hundred and Seventy five miles, turn left on Union Avenue and go back one hundred years in time”. The Saratoga Race Course has witnessed the greatest horses of all time run into the history books. It remains timeless, historic and the crown jewel of Saratoga Springs.
The museum is a way to truly appreciate the beauty, majesty, history and excitement of thoroughbred racing. The last comment of this factoid is the absolute classic for us.
ALL IN ALL AN INTERESTING FEW HOURS