Foxfield ‘perfect’ for racing this weekend

The Foxfield Fall Horse Races are set for Sunday, October 1, in Albemarle County.
Published: Sep. 27, 2023 at 10:14 AM EDT
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ALBEMARLE COUNTY, Va. (WVIR) - The Foxfield Fall Horse Races are set for Sunday, October 1, in Albemarle County.

This event usually features smaller crowds and a more family-friendly atmosphere compared to the Spring Race.

A crowd of around 3,000 to 5,000 is expected to come out for the decades’ old tradition.

The course at Foxfield has always been one of the best in the country for steeple chase racing. Now, it’s even safer for the horses thanks to an investment into a new irrigation system that softens the ground for them.

“Horses benefit from it with less concussion to their limbs. They are able to perform better, they jump better, they run better, and have many less soft tissue injuries,” Doctor Reynolds Cowles said.

“It also helps us attract some really great horses and some great riders. People look at what that course is going to be and that safety piece. The fact that we’ve put that at such a high priority at Foxfield and invested that money and time, that is really impactful for a lot of the horses that are registered with the National Steeplechase Association,” Kelsey Cox said.

The irrigation system has made the grass dark green, soft, and grown to a plush 7 inches high.

“Its absolutely perfect. As Bill Gallow, the director of racing for NSA would say, ‘Can we run today?’” Cowles said.

Foxfield is once again teaming up with the local chapter of Habitat for Humanity, giving it $50,000 with money raised at the fall races.

“Really, truly, it’s amplifying their message. They do a wonderful program throughout the United States, but specifically in their community, and we want to celebrate their work and the impact they have here. We are so proud to partner with them,” Cox said.

Sunday’s races are set to start at 12:30 p.m.

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