Recently, my wife and I visited with my in-laws in Illinois with the goal of attending Arlington Park for their Preview Day and Food Truck Festival. The visit would be my first time walking the grounds of Arlington International. How could you ever go wrong with great food, a few brews, and wonderful athletes racing?
The Arlington grounds are beautiful and easily join my list of racing destination eye-candy, which includes tracks such as Santa Anita or Keeneland. Here are a few scenes from the trip to help entice you to take a visit to this historic track.
When you walk up to the front gates you truly feel as if there is a giant welcome mat with a beautiful landscape surrounded by a grand entrance.
A look around Arlington International Racecourse
I loved the open seating availability along the full stretch of the track!
A well groomed synthetic main track and lush green infield. Oddly, the infield took me back to scenes while visiting Camarero in Puerto Rico and that is a good thing.
The spacious saddling paddock.
A paddock view of the grandstand rear.
The finish line, and a camera dude.
Food Truck Festival
With early VIP access, we were able to hit the food trucks before the masses. That said, we arrived early enough that we even beat the VIPs! In the festival envelope, we received a set of tickets. Yellow trades for brews (or wine) and blue for whatever deal each food truck was offering for the day. Some deals were way better than others, and I will highlight my favorites. The down side is that there were more trucks than I could handle!
There were so many trucks this year, there was an auxiliary holding area fenced off!
The Pizza Man, #2, in the saddling paddock.
The Pizza Man's winning connections.
The start of race 2.
Up With the Birds during his post parade.