Thousands expected at Iroquois Steeplechase - WSMV News 4

Thousands expected at Iroquois Steeplechase

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The races get underway Saturday at 1 p.m. (WSMV) The races get underway Saturday at 1 p.m. (WSMV)

Hockey isn’t the only sport on the minds of Nashvillians this weekend. Horses are also in the spotlight.

Since 1941, the Iroquois Steeplechase has been a rite of spring in West Nashville.

Friday is considered the calm before the storm at Percy Warner Park. The horses will run on Saturday, so they spend most of the day Friday in the barn resting.

The racetrack and setting for the Steeplechase is a reminder of Tennessee’s beauty. Green is the spring color that overwhelms everything at the site.

The races begin Saturday at 1 p.m. The seven races including running and jumping, fences and hedges.

The big race is the final race, with more than $500,000 in prize money at stake.

Fashion wise, Steeplechase is always somewhat of a Tale of Two Cities. Classy and colorful is the way most of the crowd goes, with hats many will only wear once a year.

Ultimately, it’s a fundraiser, gathering $10 million through the years for patient care at the Monroe Carrell Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt.

Friday’s rain means it could be muddy, which is something the 25,000 who usually attend may want to consider. But Saturday’s weather is expected to be lovely.

Gates open at 8 a.m.

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