Saratoga Horse Racing

November 2011 Archives

Sweat pouring down her face from exertion and long hours without respite, the soldier moved one arduous step at a time.  She'd been on this exhausting journey for five days now:  back and forth, back and forth, from the munitions station to the front.  By the end of the week, she had carried 386 rounds of ammo (9,000 pounds) to her comrades, sharing the uber-real danger of bullets whizzing over her head.  But still she carried on, until the battle was over and her troops were back at their frozen unit.   Sgt. Reckless was there for her brothers-in-arms:  the Battle of Outpost Vegas was one of the most savage in the "police action" at the 38th Parallel.  

The Korean War often is called, The Forgotten War, with good reason.  This non-war war began less than five years after the end of World War II--and not many average people supported the war effort.  

The soldier in the scenario above, with strong back, keen eye and gentle, loyal heart was named Sgt. Reckless, and she was a horse.  A small Mongolian mare, she also could have been named, "Sgt. Fearless," because there was nowhere that her soldiers went, without her.  Sometimes, even in the aforementioned five-day battle--she trod her journey alone, but never turned back, never went AWOL.

Had it not been for Robin Hutton, a writer who brought Sgt. Reckless to my attention, I'd not have known about the brave little mare.  (Robin is writing a screenplay, BTW, so hopefully the whole world will know of this magnificent steed in the near future.)

But not all war horses are the subject of movies:  most, like the Korean War, have gone unnoticed--or at least, unappreciated--by the public, after their human-designated "usefulness" is over.

From the beginning of time, horses have been in the trenches, literally, with their humans.  Whether in battle as a knight/soldier/warrior--or as an unwilling potential victim, taking their people on wild-eyed rides through the woods, away from harm's way...

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M.E. Altieri

THE ALPHA MARE, commonly known as M.E. Altieri, is a writer/editor/activist who lives and breathes the art and sport of horse racing—both Arabian and Thoroughbred.
At the tender age of six months, her Grandmother plopped her on the back of a pony. (See photo.) Three years later, Mare first rode a horse—an American Quarter Horse—on her cousin's farm in Stephentown, New York. That same year her Mother and Grandma took her to Green Mountain Park, a now- (sadly) defunct Thoroughbred track in Pownal, Vermont. Next stop, Saratoga Race Course. The seed was planted, and a passion, born.
While she does have other interests (Medieval languages and theology, cats, tigers, etc.) none hold a candle to her passion for horses. She finds that horses are far-more intelligent, compassionate and kind than 99% of the people she meets. Mare's career is fascinating, if nothing else: in 2011, she served as Editor of a beautiful history book, The Purebred Arabian Horses of Iraq: Myths and Realities by Dr. Mohammad bin 'Abdul-'Aziz Al Nujaifi. She's contributed to several international horse racing publications, including Al Badia, Arabian Finish Line, Desert Mirage and Galopp Magasinet.
She's the Founder, Publisher and Editor-in-Chief of f!lly Magazine-- the magazine by, for and about women in horse racing. f!lly will debut in 2013. Both Thoroughbred and Arabian racing--and women, f!llies and mare from all around the world--will be featured in the full-color, beautiful, historic publication. Magazines are the first of the media M.E. wishes to tackle: she's also writing a screenplay, and seeks the perfect venue and producer for her horse racing radio show. She's got the voice; God knows, she has opinions--she feels led to put them together and broadcast to the 51% of the racing fan base that's too-often been overlooked. (Hint: 51%...could it be, women?)
An Alumna of Mount Holyoke College, Mare hopes to use these media, including her blog here at, to encourage women and girls to find their vocations in horse racing and to help make the world a more loving and nurturing place for all equines. When asked to identify her Mentor, the woman who encouraged her to follow her bliss, Mare names the great Penny Chenery. Through these various media projects, Mare hopes to do for other females what Ms. Chenery did for her--open doors, encourage and bless.


Thoroughbred Racing in Saratoga

The Thoroughbred is a distinct, created breed of horse. Saratoga Springs, New York is a unique, pristine city in Upstate New York.

Put the two together, Thoroughbreds and Saratoga, and you have America's most prestigious, lushly beautiful and important racing meet. For six weeks every summer, the world's best horses, jockeys and trainers come together to compete for trophies, cash and fame.

In this blog, we'll discover All Things Thoroughbred and the lovely international community of horsepeople, both professionals and fans, alike who set up camp in this city. Some come for six weeks, only. Others are here from April through November every year, when the Oklahoma's open. Yet others trek to town to race their mighty steeds—then fall in love with the place; buy a home and move here.

The Saratoga racing family of humans and horses is a year-round endeavour. You think that all the horses all go elsewhere after Labor Day? Then this blog is for you, too.

(Is the reference, "the Oklahoma" lost on you? Stay tuned, you'll feel like a pro in no time.)

Welcome to the only experience on Earth that can boast of such otherworldly beauty and heart-stopping thrills, all in the same breath: Thoroughbred racing in Saratoga.