OK, so we’re not talking Kentucky Derby or Breeders Cup races here. But the furiously fleet Appaloosas that race deserve some recognition, too. Just recently the Idaho Appaloosa Racing Association (IARA) hosted two new races, a derby and futurity. The contests were held in Blackfoot, Idaho over Labor Day weekend. The two races proved to be a success, with nine starters and more than $6,000 in purse money.
Tisa Arrow C, a 3-year-old Appaloosa, went down in history as the first winner of the IARA Derby. She won $1,860 of the $3,100 purse, bringing her lifetime earnings to $5,358. The very next race was the inaugural running of the IARA Futurity. That was won by Badons Corona Extra, a 2-year-old Appaloosa. The gelding won $1,980 of the $3,300 total purse, bringing his lifetime earnings to $5,775.
Although in relative obscurity compared to Thoroughbred race horses, Appaloosas have been galloping to the finish line for decades. The Appaloosa Horse Club (ApHC) officially recognized the sport in 1962, beginning Appaloosa racing history with four races and 23 starters competing for $12,000 in total purses. In 2006, 203 starters competed in 440 races for $2,904,774 in total purses. Today, racing fans can find Appaloosas heading for the winner’s circle in Arizona, California, Colorado, Kansas, Michigan, Montana, Nevada, Oklahoma, Oregon, Texas, Washington and Wyoming.