14th November 2021
Our Beach – the race is on…once more
After a one year hiatus due to Covid 19 restrictions the annual Rockingham Beach horse races were on again today.
Rockingham Beach shone resplendent under a warm sunny sky, a gentle zephyr of breeze wafting the pleasant odour of horse dung over those at the working end of the race track – our beach.
Visitors from far and wide attended the colourful occasion, some arriving early to stake their claim under the gazebos in the adjacent park for their picnics, many frolicking in the shallow waters. Many more arrived on boats, anchoring just off the beach while others lazed in their kayaks, paddle boards or ‘floaties’ spending much of the day in and on the water, adding to the day’s picturesque appeal.
The waterfront bars, restaurants and cafes were ‘pumping’, while large marquees catered for those ‘in the know’ and local grandees. The horses, too, had their own large redolent marquee with temporary stables. The handsome thoroughbred beasts within could be heard loud and clear, frequently hammering at their metal cage walls with their hooves in between races until being released with all their pent-up energy, each surmounted by a jockey ablaze in his/her vividly-coloured silks.
While the many family groups needed to retire homeward after the event, the Rockingham hardies ensured ‘the beach’ would rock on into the night. It was a grand mini spectacle the likes of which, to our knowledge, is only run in Sanlúcar de Barrameda, on the sandy beachfront near the mouth of the Guadalquivir River in Spain’s Cadiz province – so, we feel pretty privileged.
Will it run next year? I wouldn’t put any money on that . . .