Fans take in Breeders’ Cup experience in Del Mar

DEL MAR, Calif. — The final day of the 2021 Breeders’ Cup wrapped up Saturday at the Del Mar Fairgrounds.

Fans were glad to be back after last year’s race didn’t allow any people in the stands due to the coronavirus. It’s also the first time the Breeders’ Cup is back in San Diego County since 2017.

Brenda Hammerschmidt, visiting from Florida, says the event is a family reunion.

“I looked forward to this,” Hammerschmidt said. “We were watching the news to make sure it was going to happen, with the flights too at the last minute.”

Unlike others, Hammerschmidt says she picks her horses differently.

“I know everybody studies it and researches it, but I get lucky with other races — what color is the horse, the names and the jockeys,” she said.

Fred Desimone, of Washington state, walked into the races with a bright pink blazer, matching his predicted winner.

“This suit matches our jockey silks of our horses in the classic max player,” Desimone said.

The 2022 Breeders’ Cup will be in Lexington, Kentucky, but Los Angeles native Jarrett Ynaez is happy this year it’s close to his home.

“The day is beautiful, the sun is shining, people are out,” Ynaez said. “We get to mingle, making new friends and just talking to everyone that has the same common interest as us.”

As far as the race goes, Knicks Go came out victorious in the $6 million Breeders’ Cup Classic, beating out controversial Kentucky Derby winner Medina Spirit, Belmont Stakes winner Essential Quality and hometown hero Hot Rod Charlie.

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