The Iroquois Steeplechase Welcomes Crowd of 25,000 for 80th Annual Race

After a two-year hiatus — and a six-week delay — the Iroquois Steeplechase is back! Thousands of people converged on Percy Warner Park on the last Saturday in June for a fabulous day of horse racing, fashion and fun.

The crowd in the boxes was a bit thinner than in years past, but the park was packed with more than 25,000 colorfully clad spectators for this beloved rite of spring. Like most events in 2020, last year’s race was canceled, and when 2021 began, it was unclear whether this year’s festivities would be able to carry on as planned. Race organizers pushed the event from the second Saturday in May to the last Saturday in June, a wise choice that resulted in a restriction-free — and, more importantly, mask-free — event for the crowd. Despite the scorching hot temperatures, guests were thrilled to spend the afternoon outside cheering on the horses and showing off their post-pandemic fashions. “Our community raced to participate in Nashville’s first major event in 18 months,” said Iroquois Steeplechase President Marianne Byrd.

The event, which was the final race of the National Steeplechase Association’s spring season, included seven races, three stakes and more than $250,000 in purses. In between the races, there were activities for the whole family, including the always-adorable stick horse race, the equally aww-inducing Parade of Hounds and the Nfocus Steeplechase Style Contest. Congratulations are in order to our winners: Karla Adgent (Most Stylish Female), Robb McCluskey (Most Stylish Male), Andrei Javier and Gabriela Lira (Most Stylish Couple), Etain Williams (Most Outrageous Style) and LaDonna Boyd (Social Media Style). After a year of living in sweatpants, it was evident that this crowd pulled out all the stylish stops for the event, and the competition was fierce.

The competition was equally fierce on the track, and the day concluded with Snap Decision winning his ninth straight victory in two years. The real winners of the day, however, were the Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital, beneficiary of the event, and the scores of Nashvillians who were once again able to enjoy a typical day of socializing and spectating at the Iroquois Steeplechase.

To view photos from the Nfocus Portrait Studio, click here.