We got to Philly on what started out as a nice day in Connecticut and got very overcast at Philadelphia Park. After much searching and rebuffing by a security guard , we got into the stable gate. Ahvee’s Destiny was in Barn #1, next to Canadian Ballet. They’re both chestnut colored and since Ballet was closer to us, we said hello to her first and then tried to shower love on Ahvee’s Destiny. She was a little “bitey” according to Josie, the assistant trainer, who came down with the two horses from Saratoga. She also told us that the track condition of the turf course had enn downgraded from “good” to “yielding.” Ahvee has never liked an off track.
After we spent some time with her, the grooms put her front feet in an ice bath. Even though she looked good in the morning and upon arrival and even though the State Vet had seen her an said she was good to go, they were still trying to take care of her sore foot (or is it feet?). I took some photos of her ice bath and we left to join Canadian Ballet’s owners at the trackside dining area. We exchanged pleasantries, had some food and waited until race time approached.
The race was exciting. The little chestnut took off was overtaken in the stretch but fought back gallantly and gamely to eke out the big victory. The Queen of the Stable had won… or should I say the NEW Queen of Linda Rice’s Stable, Canadian Ballet. You see about an hour before post time, Linda arrived in the barn and checked out Ahvee’s Destiny, only to find that Ahvee was exhibiting soreness in her right front foot and was wincing when they jogged her around a turn in the shedrow. In short, we and Ahvee’s Destiny had made the trip for nothing. She was scratched.
Linda said she would come to see us but she didn’t. We caught up with her in the paddock but she didn’t have much time, since she needed to saddle, and eventually anoint, her new Queen of the Stable. Not to take anything away from Canadian Ballet – she’s a great horse with a lot of heart — Ahvee’s Destiny remains our Queen. We were happy for Ballet and her owners and for Linda, but when Ballet fought back to win by a head, our eyes got teary, as we thought, It coulda been Ahvee’s Destiny.
Needless to say, the ride home stunk, enough said.
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