Horse racing is often called "The Sport of Kings," which harkens back to a time when members of the cultural elite would amuse themselves by watching horses race each other atop local monarchs. Admire equine agility with today's Groupon to the Maryland Junior Hunt Cup at Shawan Downs on May 1 in Cockeysville. Choose from the following options:
- For $75, you get finish-line-box seating in addition to one premier parking pass, which includes a table with four chairs and admission for one carload (a $150 value).
- For $25, you get premier parking, which includes admission for one carload (a $50 value).
- For $5, you get general parking, which includes admission for one carload (a $10 value).
At the Maryland Junior Hunt Cup, pint sized jockeys and their saddled sidekicks gather each year to compete in 11 races at Shawan Downs. The races cover a full spread of equine excellence, including lead line trot, pony flat, and junior steeplechase races, and the lineup of leg-powered performances promises to provide riders young and old with inspirational strides, horseletic feats, and photo finishes unseen since the days when jockeys worked the one-hour camera shop. Those filled with equine jealousy can test their own hooves by entering the Peoplechase or the Stick Pony Race.
General-admission parking includes admission for all passengers in the car, as well as a hay-wagon shuttle that will transport guests from the parking area to the course. With premier parking, patrons will bypass the hike and arrive near the food and vendor areas. From the vantage point of a private table with four folding chairs, viewers in the finish-line box can observe the races at their most climactic points, allowing each spectator to determine the winners of the hoof-to-hoof thumb wars.
In 2000, the Maryland Junior Hunt Cup was rebooted by an event inspired by the heart of young horse enthusiast, Katelyn Salmont. Katelyn, a horse-hearting 12-year-old, worked to reinstate the event and allow more young riders to participate. Through the Land Preservation Trust and the North American Pt-to-Pt Association, the cup and its participants preserve Katelyn's wish, upholding the spirit of both steeplechase racing and Maryland's agricultural roots.