Every Race, Every Day, Gulfstream Park Shows Appreciation for the Backstretch Workers
Only one horse can reach the wire first in every race (unless there’s a dead-heat), but their grooms bring them to the paddock all looking like winners. The Stronach Group has launched a program at Gulfstream Park called the “Best Turned Out” Award that honors the efforts of these unsung heroes of racing.
Gulfstream Park recognizes the care and hard work grooms put in day in and day out, caring for our equine athletes. For each race day at Gulfstream Park, the best turned out horse and groom pair in each race will receive an award. Judges examine the presentation and appearance of both horse and groom to determine each award winner. The award consists of a $25 gift card.
Chief Horse Identifier Sharon Rose, the current judge, not only scans the microchips for the horses in each race, she also takes a close look at both horse and groom. She relays her selection to track announcer Pete Aiello, who makes an announcement over the PA system. Sharon hands the winning groom an envelope with the gift card and a note of congratulations, in English and Spanish.
The Florida HBPA adds our congratulations – to our dedicated backstretch community, and to Gulfstream Park for creating this program.
Photo Credits: Ryan Thompson and Nicole Thomas