81st Annual Iroquois Steeplechase this Saturday in Nashville

Published: May. 12, 2022 at 4:52 PM CDT
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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WSMV) -If you’re new to town, Steeplechase is a spectacle you need to see Saturday. Fancy clothes, big hats, and one big race are all part of it.

The arrival never gets old at the Iroquois. Since 1941 horses from England, Ireland, and around here have been coming to run, except for during America’s involvement in World War II.

Dwayne Hal ran here too, rode, and won it in 1977. Every year for years it’s his job to remind people what makes this so important to Nashville.

“It’s a grand tradition,” Hal said. “It’s a great opportunity to get out.”

Saturday, the race runs 3 miles on Grass. Horses young and old jump with precision in pursuit of the Iroquois trophy. The name Iroquois is an honor for the first winning horse of the British Derby.

The past is well represented, and so is the future. Off the track, spectators make it a spectacle, a rare Nashville blend of The Haves and Have Nots.

Fans start planning fancy southern-style wardrobes months before the trumpets sound.

Get here early. West Nashville traffic and parking will be a challenge. That’s the race before the race.

The race serves as a fundraiser for Vanderbilt’s Monroe Carrell Children’s Hospital, raising millions of dollars throughout the year. It’s also a sponsor of the Friends of Warner Park.

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