10 Most Pristine Horse Tracks across America

The Breeders Cup less than 2 weeks away at the beautiful Del Mar Racetrack in San Diego, California. I thought I would put out a top 10 of the most pristine horse racing tracks in the United States.  I will rank them in my preference order I will also add a poll for you to vote on which you think is the best in the US. Without further ado, I present the 10 most pristine racetracks in the USA.

#10 Ruidoso Downs – Now I know this isn’t a typical thoroughbred racetrack but it is a beautiful track and is definitely one of the ones you need to check out.  

#9 Keeneland Race Course –  Right around the area of Churchill Downs is a place called Keeneland Race Course. It is a unique track. The clubhouse is made of stone and the well-manicured grass. During the Spring meet, it is home to one of the bigger Kentucky Derby Prep races in the Blue Grass Stakes. Rumors are though the weather is way better in the Fall meet.  

#8 Oaklawn Park – Located in a little-known resort town called Hot Springs Arkansas.  This track is small but it is unique in the fact that it has a glass-encased grandstand. It is also home to the Arkansas Derby during the Kentucky Derby Prep races.  The only downsides to this place are they have 1 arm bandits there (aka slot machines) and I feel those take away from the beauty of Horse racing, and 2 they have no turf course. 

#7 Arlington Park – Located in Chicago Illinois, has a grandstand that was rebuilt due to a 1985 fire that destroyed the old one. The racing is mediocre but almost all the races are always full and the prize purses are decent. They have a restaurant called the Million Room with the best view in the park and the cost of eating it isn’t half bad.  The featured race here is the Arlington Million where the winner gets an automatic bid to the Breeders Cup Turf. 

#6 Monmouth Park – Dubbed “The shore’s greatest stretch” this little slice of heaven is an NJ gem.  They are home to the Haskell Invitational which usually has the top 3-year-old horses running in it. This track is very close to the Atlantic Ocean and is open during the summer.  The quality of racing is not what you would expect at a Churchill Downs or Belmont Park but it is good enough and pretty much every weekend it is jam-packed. 

#5 Saratoga Race Course – A racing course slam right in the middle of a racing town with a spa as well. Home to the Travers Stakes which is another big race for 3-year-old horses. There is a lot of history here at this Upstate NY track some of the more memorable horses have raced here. Right across the street is the Horse Racing Hall of Fame and is definitely a must see.

#4 Churchill Downs – Home to the most famous race for 3-year-olds the Kentucky Derby also known as the “Run for the Roses.” Also home to the recognizable twin spires which is now getting a facelift. Only an hour and a half away from Keeneland with a carefully planned trip, you can take 2 of the 10 off the list on the same trip. The track is a typical neighborhood feel to it on any day other than oaks and derby day.  One definitely needs to visit the Kentucky Derby Museum. They will see tons of memorabilia and build memories there.

#3 Belmont Park – Located in Elmont, NY just a few minutes north of NY City. This is home to the true test of a champion in the Belmont Stakes. A lot of triple crown bids came up short here in heartbreaking fashion. Nicknamed the “Grand Old Lady” it has seen better days in times when the grandstand would be full. But as always that first Saturday in June the grandstand is usually packed to see triple crown history. 

#2 Santa Anita – Located in the San Gabriel Mountains in California it is truly one of the most breathtaking backdrops in horse racing. It also boasts the most beautiful designed paddock in America.  It is definitely an easy access in and out no matter how many people are there which makes it a fun place to spend the day. 

#1 Del Mar Race Track – Located in beautiful San Diego California at the beginning of every race day they play Bing Crosby’s “where the surf meets the turf”.  This is their slogan for this race track and is absolutely the best race track in America and quite possibly the entire world.

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