Morning with Sagamore’s thoroughbreds

An early morning jog for Dmitri and Feel Proud, a homebred race horse.

An early morning jog for Dmitri and Feel Proud, a homebred race horse, at Sagamore Farm.

At Preakness time, most of the Sagamore Farm's horses were at Pimlico. Those needing rehabilitation and the younger horses stayed behind in the stables.

At Preakness time, most of the Sagamore Farm’s horses were at Pimlico. Those needing rehabilitation and the younger horses stayed behind in the stables.

Maybe it may take decades but the owner of Sagamore Farm is determined to raise a Triple Crown winner. But owner Kevin Plank (CEO of UnderArmour) is willing to wait. He kick-started his efforts at a legendary 560-acre farm in northwest Baltimore County that was once the home of Native Dancer, winner of the 1953 Preakness Stakes and 21 other races in his career, and other Hall of Fame thoroughbreds. Sagamore Farms was a gift to Alfred G. Vanderbilt, Jr., from his mother. He determined to make the farm a horse racing powerhouse — and he succeeded.

Some of the stalls in the original barn built by Vanderbilt.

Some of the stalls in the original barn built by Alfred G. Vanderbilt, Jr..

In the week before the Preakness I had an opportunity to tour the farm and pat the handsome and gentle giants who may one day cross the finish line in record time. I felt special. I mean how many people get this opportunity??

It turns out anybody can.

Two fillies frolic in a field at Sagamore.

Two fillies frolic in a field at Sagamore Farms.

Sagamore Farms offers a Three Diamond Club for horse lovers, racing fans and, well, anybody. There are Saturday tours, a speaker’s series, watch parties and happy hours (although these last two occur at area restaurants and bars.)

Sagamore Farm is set in a beautiful spot in Baltimore County, rolling hills and woodlands, fresh and green. And in spring, awash in pollen. A beautiful spot as we await the Preakness Stakes at Pimlico on Saturday. And a place I want to visit again. Take a look…. And may your favorite horse win the Preakness Stakes on Saturday.

 © Text and photos Mary K. Tilghman

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