Although the Breeders' Cup Steeplechase is the featured attraction at Fair Hill today, the small country track located in Cecil county near Elkton offers six other races and a number of other non-racing events.
There will be pari-mutuel wagering, but betting may be secondary to tailgating parties, picnicking and horse- and people-watching.
"We try to offer something for everyone, from families with young children to those who want to bet," said Gregg Morris, a former leading jockey who is now Fair Hill's executive director.
The day's events also feature a trade fair, live music and all the elements of a fall racing festival. There will be appearances by such celebrities as English mystery writer Dick Francis and popular racing cartoonist Peb, who will be on hand to meet the public. Mr. Francis, who has written 30 novels, most of which have a racing background, will autograph copies of his latest book, "Comeback."
Post time for the first race is 1 p.m. Post time for the Breeders' Cup is 2:30 p.m. It will be the third race on the card. NBC will use eight camerasto record the event, and will a show a 20-minute segment featuring the race later in the day on "NBC
SportsWorld" (WMAR, Channel 2) between 5 and 6 p.m.
There are 12 horses in the Breeders' Cup race. The heavy favorite is English champion Morley Street, who won the event last year when it was staged at Belmont Park in New York. This is the sixth running of the Breeders' Cup and the fourth time it has been run at Fair Hill.
Four foreign jockeys -- three from England and one from New Zealand -- compete as well as two American women and six American men.
General admission is $5. Reserved seats, if still available, cost an additional $10. There is bleacher-type seating in the general admission area available on a first-come, first-served basis. Parking is free.
Fair Hill is about an hour's drive from Baltimore. Take 1-95 to Exit 100 (North East, Rising Sun). Turn left at the exit onto Route 272, toward Rising Sun. Turn right at Route 273. It's another six miles to the race track.
For additional information, phone (301) 398-6565.