Charleston Cup returns for 20th running

  • Tuesday, September 10, 2013

The 20th running of the Charleston Cup will take place on Sunday, Nov. 10 at the Plantation at Stono Ferry. PHOTO PROVIDED

The 20th running of the Charleston Cup is scheduled to take place at The Plantation at Stono Ferry on Sunday, Nov. 10. Sanctioned by The National Steeplechase Association, the cup has become one of the premier sporting events in the Carolina Lowcountry, offering spectators the opportunity to experience live horse racing at its finest.

Started by the South Carolina Jockey Club in 1986, the Charleston Cup is much more than just a horse race.

The cup is one of the top the social events of the season – and definitely not to be missed.

You don’t have to be a “horse person” to enjoy all the Charleston Cup has to offer.

The race weekend kicks off on Friday with the elegant black-tie Race Ball.

Live music, fabulous food and a special race preview combine to make this gala party an essential element in the total cup experience.

Sunday morning, the real excitement begins as the nation’s top riders, trainers and owners prepare to compete for purses totaling $50,000.

More than 16,000 spectators will enjoy a full day at the races with exciting steeplechase and flat races.

The gates open at 9 a.m., and attendees arrive early with their picnic baskets packed with everything from champagne and caviar to fried chicken and cold beer.

A vendor village and tailgating are in full swing by the time the paddock call rolls around at noon.

A steeplechase race differs from a flat race in many ways. Flat racing is exciting in that it has a great deal of speed while a steeplechase takes that speed and combines it with the danger of jumping.

The thoroughbreds that run in steeplechase races are three years of age or older and have been trained specifically for “chasing.”

Additionally, the jockeys are typically larger than ones that would participate in a flat race.

The extra height is necessary in order to have a better hold on the horse while soaring over the jumps.

Whether you are entertaining clients in a private corporate tent, relaxing with friends in a reserved parking space, or just spreading a blanket out for a picnic with a view, the Charleston Cup will provide one and all with the ingredients for a fun-filled weekend.

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