Saturday, May 2, 2009

a derby week story...

Seven year old Rachel Mattson has aplastic anemia. After her diagnosis, she apparently fell in love with horses. Her father says that she read every book in the library about horses and has "seen a million horse movies." Because of this, Rachel's wish from the Make a Wish Foundation was to attend the Kentucky Derby. While they are attending the Derby today, I suspect the best part of her trip occurred yesterday.

Perhaps you've heard of a horse called Rachel Alexandra?

Rachel (the girl) met Rachel's (the horse) trainer on Wednesday. After hearing Rachel's (the girl) story, Wiggins (the trainer) allowed her to go into the stall and pet the three year old filly. Afterwards, Wiggins invited her to the paddock for the Oaks and told her that if Rachel (the horse) won the Oaks, they would want her to be in the winner's circle with them to celebrate.

Well, in case you missed it, Rachel Alexandra won the Oaks by 20 lengths. (You go girl!)

Rachel (the girl) did get her photo op with Rachel (the horse) in the winners circle. Wiggins presented her with the pink leather halter that Rachel (the horse) used to walk to the paddock.

(Oh, did I mention that the Oaks was pink yesterday? For breast cancer awareness? Too cool.)

Miss Rachel (the girl) left the Downs yesterday with a pink hat proclaiming Alexandra the great and an abundance of memories. That's just one of the amazing stories during Derby Week. It's probably my favorite part.

(If you are following the Derby, rumor has it that the favorite "I Want Revenge" has been scratched. We're waiting on an update now.)