Vic Zast Saratoga Diary

Vic Zast’s daily journal of the Saratoga premier summertime race meet and the characters who make their annual pilgrimage there.

Missing Persons

It’s not only the thousands of fans that are missing each day from the racetrack that has Saratoga troubled. That some Saratoga mainstays are missing persons is also a concern.... Read More

Ear Plugs

There's been an uptick in sales of ear plugs at the CVS drug store. The yearlings have returned to the Fasig-Tipton grounds on Madison and East, and sleep-deprived residents of nearby Fifth Avenue are being awakened by their whinnying at 4 a.m.... Read More

Half-Dressed Outfits and Full Field Routes

Thursdays are the days the steeplechase horses compete. On this Thursday, only three races on the card were worth watching, and the first race - 2 1/16 miles over nine fences, with many quondam flat runners - was a fun one.... Read More

Full-tilt Boogie

The Reading Room was every bit the Pump Room when Liz Tippett used to drive to the Union Avenue clubhouse for lunch in "The Outlaw", her lavish, black and yellow, horse-drawn road coach. It isn't that any longer.... Read More

Everything from Arrrrr to Z-z-z-z-z-z

Monday was the last day of the first week of racing. Despite rare sunny weather with low humidity, the track was a ghost town. NYRA reported attendance of only 10,695. In the absence of attention, two jockeys -- Mike Luzzi and Channing Hill -- excelled.... Read More

In Fashion

Macho Again, a horse that finished second to Big Brown in the Preakness Stakes (gr. I), won the 45th Jim Dandy Stakes (gr. II) beating the 3-2 favorite Pyro. But fashion was a more prevalent statement than accomplishment all day.... Read More

Whitney Winners Toasted

Marylou Whitney, escorted by her husband John Hendrickson, entered the main dining room of the Wishing Well restaurant on Route 9N at 9:58 pm. That is two minutes shy of an hour that most people her age are counting sheep instead of eating lamb chops.... Read More

Out with the Up-and-Overs

Inclement weather is wreaking havoc with Saratoga. Yesterday, two men in tights from the New York City Ballet called off their trophy presentation to the winners of the third race because the rain would have ruined their costumes. ... Read More


Nothing ruins a day at the races more than rain, and at Saratoga, where people huddle under the trees in the backyard to picnic, the effect can be worse than ants in the potato salad.... Read More

Green is the Color of Money

Red and white are the colors of Saratoga Race Course, but green is the color of money. That's why this 140-year-old racetrack, recently strapped to the brink of bankruptcy along with the other New York Racing Association tracks, will be opening today with a new, air-conditioned luxury box on the finish line and a "Restaurant Row" located opposite the...... Read More

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