The Inside Rail

Saratoga is looming.

No longer the August Place to Be. It’s now the Most-of-July-All-of-August-and-into-September-Place-to-Be. Two weeks? Yeah, two weeks, I will say goodbye to my family, my routine, my comfort zone, my garden and make the trek to Saratoga. My first trip in 1989, it was euphoria, the definition of freedom. “My tack bag and my credit card,” to quote the late, great Jonathan Kiser. Now, it’s different. There is no euphoria. Life changes.

I’m sitting in a coffee shop in Purcellville, Virginia. Feverishly selling ads, well, feverishly trying to sell ads. Miles plays baseball down the street. Yesterday, he “bought” my Father’s Day present. “Dad, would you like vinyls for Father’s Day?” That means Miles wants vinyls. We bought The Beatles’ Abbey Road, Dylan’s Highway 61 Revisited, Simon & Garfunkle’s Sounds of Silence and Prime Prine, the best of John Prine. All we need is a record player. This has to be a first, buying vinyl records before you have a record player. We have never done anything by the book or by the clock. My son, an old soul.

The racing business has slowed a little, waiting for jump races at Monmouth Park, which were cancelled (postponed!) because of rain. Steeplechasing struggles for its foothold at the major tracks, times have changed. Hopefully, they will reschedule. Hopefully. If so, Gostisbehere and Archanova should visit the Jersey Shore. 

As for the bloodstock business, well, it’s booming.

Making his 4-year-old debut, Lemonade Thursday routed an allowance field at Monmouth Park Saturday. My favorite yearling purchase of my first crop, the son of Lemon Drop Kid needed some time to mature and develop. He looked mature and developed in a 7 ¾-length romp. Stakes next.