Kentucky Rolex: Part 2

Sunday, April 25, 2010

 Now that Mother Nature has finished her hissy fit I will continue my Kentucky Rolex experience. The Kentucky Rolex is a three-day event between horse and rider: dressage, cross-country and stadium jumping. I have been attending the event since it came to Kentucky in the early 80's and have realized most out-of-towers' or newbie's do not understand the rules and terminology of the event. Let me shed some light on these.
First let me explain some of the obvious rules and make some suggestions to attending the Kentucky Rolex:
  • Next to horses, dogs rule. Children must be on a leash and tethered in at all times. The announcer will remind you of this rule several times.
  • The small orange flags are to indicate ground hazards. They are not free flags for you to pick up and wave franticly in support of your favorite horse and rider.
  • It is required you wear some form of boot to attend the event. Does not matter if they match or fit, you can even carry them but you must have boots, unless you are a plaid-a-nite (see below).
  • Yes, the Kentucky Horse Park has a vast number of mature trees, however, you must be a resident of the state to use these restroom facilities.
  • The hospitality tents you see along the course are not for you. Do not try to enter. These tents house the plaid-a-nites, which are a very rare being that consumes mass quantities of alcohol while wearing every bit of plaid they own. These tents are not safe; they can cause permanent vision impairment.
  • When selecting a bleacher seat always check behind the bleachers first. Many of the bleachers hide port-a-potties that are located directly behind them. These seats will leave a permanent scent on your clothing, not to mention the untimely sound effects you will be forced to endure.
  • Couch potato seating is also provide. The Kentucky Rolex is kind enough to set up a very large screen television with bleachers directly in front of it, so you do  not have to exercise to attend. Though you are responsible for your own chips and dip.
  • Reserved parking can be requested and paid for, though I’m sorry to say the Kentucky Rolex received only one request this year. The following photo indicates the limited space that is provided. Think carefully before you request such a pass.

Now, for some of the terminology you will need to know to truly understand the Kentucky Rolex:
  • The term "On Course" simply means all of the above rules and suggestions are being adhered to.
  • The term “Endurance” refers to the poor man who has a backpack with a child, pushing stroller with a child, holding the leash of 2 more children, and all the while shaking his head in agreement as his wife tells him, “no, go straight through that ditch.”
  • The term “Refusal” has nothing to do with horses but rather with the term endurance as defined above. Right after the lunch break you will start to hear the refusals from the enduring men.
  • The term “Dressage” refers to those women who have been fooled into thinking the Kentucky Rolex is a fashion show and are turned away unless they have their boots. Which by the way, is why carrying your boots is even allowed. Some just purchase a pair at the exhibit area and then head straight for the plaid-a-nite tents.
  • The term “Cross Country” refers to the distance you have to go for a Bloody Mary.
  • ”Stadium Jumping” refers to those people whom without any notice decide they too can jump something on the course only to end up being carried back to the stadium where the first-aid tent is located.
I must say it is a most entertaining way to spend a week-end and if you look hard enough you can witness almost anything. One of my favorites this year was the little girl pictured below. Her mother kept telling her, "Watch the horses;" never looking at the girl to see if she actual was. The little girl just kept yelling back, “What horses, I don’t see any horses?”

 If you look real close, in the background is an example of endurance and refusal lying on the ground.

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