By Will Kitching
In September, Gov. Larry Hogan proclaimed October as Maryland Horse Month and one reason why is Maryland’s Day at the Races, a program of 12 races also known as the Jim McKay Maryland Million Day. On Oct. 22, the 37th Jim McKay Maryland Million Day was held at Laurel Park.
The race day is named in honor of Jim McKay, founder of the Maryland Million and a well-known sports broadcaster, who traveled the world but always returned to his horse farm in Baltimore County before his death in 2008.
The first race of the day, the $50,000 Gulfstream Park Maryland Million Turf Starter Handicap, was won by Beltway Bob, ridden by female jockey Lauralea Glaser, owned and trained by Gregory L Wilson. Beltway Bob was not the favorite, leaving the gate at 12-1 odds, paying $27.20 on a $2 bet.
Aside from the competitive races, there were numerous other forms of on-track entertainment between races, including pony racing, the Suttler Post Clydesdales and Goshen fox hounds. In The Paddock, there was a pony kissing booth, a hands-on grooming station, face painting, a caricature artist, a wandering juggler and magician, color your own stick horse and cornhole.