Howdy Chuckwagon Friends!
We were up and at it very early this morning as track time was from 5 AM to 8. “Team 23” was down at the barns at 6:30 putting the harness on and preparing for the run. Rick let our son Cody drive the outfit while he held the lead team. It is always quite different being out there, with no crowd. It is almost very hollow sounding, as the grandstand and bleachers surround the infield. You can really hear the harness clanging, the wagon rattling and the driver chaaaing or whistling, in Rick’s case. He has a very unique and loud whistle that our horses start too when the horn blows. These are sounds that you may not hear when the fans have filled the seats,chatting and are eagerly awaiting for the race to start.
Following chores and breakfast, our relative Brace and I headed off to the BMO Centre where all the trade booths and Art Center are. We didn’t get the memo that it was free admittance to the grounds today! My goodness the people were wall to wall. I haven’t seen it so busy. Mind you, we never attend on days like this. The warm weather of highs of 30 degrees brought the huge crowds out. We managed to weave through the people and into the Arts area. It was a little more civilized there as not as many families with children go in there.
We stopped in to see a couple of people we know. Shawna is a Silvermith Jewelery Artist who has many of her works of art on display to sell, in a booth with a friend that does very unique picture framing. If you are coming to the grounds, it is one of the best places to go see. Some very unique Art to view and purchase.
This old country display was very interesting to look at. They did it up very well. And you see the lady in the left at the table? Well she is for real! This lady’s face is all painted up silver, and she sits so still as if she was a statue. She fools many people as she doesn’t look real at all. I’m not sure how she does it. I know I couldn’t have that job because I don’t know what sitting down means, as I’m always on the go.
I thought this is very unique. Over the many years the Stampede has been running, they have had a feature poster made up depicting all the different activities that went on to make the Calgary Stampede. Each year they showcased something different. For the 2019 Poster, they are having a contest for young artists to submit their work to be featured on the poster. What a neat idea to get the kids involved. Spread the word!
When you have livestock, there are many added expenses that come with them to keep them cared for to their best possible health. Because we race these thoroughbreds, they all have to have horseshoes put under their hoofs. That is where you need to hire a good farrier to look after that part of things in the barn. We shoe them in the spring before we head down the road and then continue a few more throughout the summer. Our friend Leo Tournier is a farrier and an equine dentist and he cares for our racing herd.
Tonight we rotated to the one barrel. Our outfit consisted of Spirit on the Left Lead, Ranger on the Right Lead. Sporty on the Left Wheel, and Bacardi on the Right Wheel. Stadium and Andy our outriding horses were rode by Dustin and David.
All four wagons had a great start. Rick “drove it like he stole ’em” as Grandma Elsie would say. On the home stretch, it was tense as to who was going to cross the finish line first. Rick or Kurt Bensmiller. It was Kurt who posted a 1:12.16 with Rick only a hair behind with a 1:12.20. Such a crowd pleasing race.
From the Travelin Trailer
Sue, with Rick and “Team 23”
P.S. Joy is not in things, it is in us.