Welcome back to all the fans of flower racing!
Here we are for the final stretch of the Memorial Marathon.
As the flowers head through the short chute between turns 3 and 4, the weather settles into solid rain and the race becomes a veritable slogfest.
Spiderwort responds well to the rain and holds steady in his leading position.
Daylily keeps pace right behind Spiderwort.
With an ancient, entangled root system, Daylilly is rarely concerned with the weather.
Bee Balm has been looking good the entire race and the rain only seems to refresh her.
Ahhhh, how Bee Balm loves a good soaking.
The crowd was worried about Gloriosa Daisy along the backstretch, but he too seems to be bearing up to the rain nicelyl.
Gloriosa holds steady right behind Bee Balm.
Sweet Pea stays in the race as she hears her fans cheering wildly for her.
The pack becomes jumbled as the flowers head through the fourth turn and look toward the wide open home stretch.
The weather finally breaks fair and pleasant.
Daylilly stretches forward and gives it everything he has.
Spiderwort responds with the most beautiful bloom he can muster
But it isn’t enough. Daylilly takes the lead!
Bee Balm, who has spent the entire race comfortably following others, slips around Spiderwort and pulls up against Daylilly.
Heading down the stretch it is Daylily and Bee Balm charging towards glory.
Gloriosa Daisy was caught in traffic coming around the fourth turn
But He breaks free!
Drawing on the strength of the incredible depth of field in all those broad swaths
Gloriosa shows his beautiful self.
The Great Performer pulls out all the stops and puts on his very best bloom!
Half-way down the final stretch, Bee Balm overtakes Daylilly for the lead
Gloriosa Daisy spurts forward. Gloriosa gets around Daylilly and pulls right up to Bee Balm.
It’s Bee Balm and Gloriosa, bloom to bloom, headed for the wire.
Gloriosa noses ahead. The pre-race favorite is back in the lead at the end!
Whoa! Wow! Freak of Nature! Bee Balm puts on an early season double bloom as she approaches the wire.
In a stunning display of beauty, speed and versatility, Bee Balm bursts forth
and crosses the wire.
BEE BALM WINS!
The crowd goes wild!
Gloriosa Daisy crosses the line in second and Daylilly pulls up in third, followed by Spiderwort, Sweet Pea and the rest of the pack.
What a race!
The lucky ticket winners are headed to the betting windows to cash in their tickets for Win, Place and Show.
Thanks so much to all you wonderful race fans for watching the Memorial Marathon. Be sure to tune into the final two legs of the Triple Crown. We have the Independence Day Sprint coming right up on the Fourth of July. Then we can look forward to the Dog Days Derby during the heat of August.
Have a great day, Race Fans! May your garden bloom beautifully.
See you soon…..