Calvin Houghland Iroquois: Test of Champions

Calvin Houghland Iroquois: Test of Champions

By Don Clippinger, National Steeplechase Association

At three miles, the $200,000 Calvin Houghland Iroquois (Gr. 1) is American Steeplechasing’s longest hurdle race, and it is a true test of champions.

Beginning in the 1980s and extending to last year, nine Eclipse Award champions have conquered the Calvin Houghland Iroquois, and two of them—Good Night Shirt and Demonstrative—have gone to the winner’s circle twice at Percy Warner Park.

Owned by Harold A. “Sonny” Via and trained by Jack Fisher, Good Night Shirt will be inducted into Thoroughbred racing’s Hall of Fame in August. Other Iroquois winners already in the Hall of Fame are Flatterer and Lonesome Glory.

'Chasing Circles: Henry Hooker dies

'Chasing Circles: Henry Hooker dies

This article was written by Alex Orr Jr. and published on NJ.com on April 28, 2017.

Henry Hooker, who, in cooperation with his wife, Alice, transformed the Iroquois Steeplechase from a local hunt meeting to one of the keystones of the National Steeplechase Association fixture card and a major benefactor of the Monroe Carell, Jr. Children's Hospital at Vanderbilt University died at his home Nashville, Tenn. home April 24, 2017.

Hooker, a prominent Tennessee attorney and civic leader, became a member of Hillsboro Hounds in 1963 and became master of that pack in 1975.

Iroquois Steeplechase Introduces 2017 Child Ambassador

Iroquois Steeplechase Introduces 2017 Child Ambassador

The Iroquois Steeplechase recently marked the official start of the pre-race season with the announcement of its 2017 Child Ambassador at the organization’s annual spring luncheon at Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt.

Run by the nonprofit Volunteer State Horsemen’s Foundation, the Iroquois Steeplechase designated Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt its primary beneficiary in 1981 and has since contributed more than $10 million to the Hospital with proceeds collected from the annual May event.

Ten-year-old Ansley McLaurin of Hendersonville, Tenn. was introduced as this year’s Child Ambassador and will serve as the face of Children’s Hospital on race day, helping raise awareness for the facility at which she began receiving treatment for a rare cancer a few months shy of her third birthday.

Setting the Standard for Nashville Events Since the 1940s

Setting the Standard for Nashville Events Since the 1940s

This article was originally published by Thomas Schultz on ResortsandLodges.com on April 26, 2017.

Nashville became one of the South’s leading travel destinations when it was named the Country Music Capital of the World during the 1940’s. While country music still plays a significant role in the community, visitors will find the city has also become a hub for all genres of music, cultural attractions, and commerce. Nashville offers something for everyone including clubs on the Honkey Tonk Highway, restaurants and boutiques in Midtown, and more than 10,000 acres of public parks.

The Iroquois Steeplechase has been a mainstay in the community and the region since its inception in 1941. This year’s event will take place May 13, at Percy Warner Park (5 miles southwest of Downtown Nashville). The race is America's oldest steeplechase event, offering the largest purse for top performing riders. Attendees can enjoy horse races, Iroquois Shoppes (vendor area) filled with event collectibles, and a family area with free games and activities for all ages. The Michael Stanley Stick Horse Race offers kids a chance to compete for gift cards. Patrons will also encounter a selection of the city’s finest food trucks, serving up a variety of meals. Proceeds from the event go to a variety of organizations with the primary recipient being the Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt. We got the chance to interview Libby Cheek, a representative of the event, to learn more about this horse racing spectacular.

AT&T Enhances the 76th Annual Iroquois Steeplechase with AT&T Business Fiber

AT&T Enhances the 76th Annual Iroquois Steeplechase with AT&T Business Fiber

AT&T* is boosting network capacity at Percy Warner Park on Saturday, May 13, for the 76th annual Iroquois Steeplechase benefitting Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt, to give customers a seamless network experience.

The Iroquois Steeplechase is a Nashville tradition, growing in popularity and scale, year after year. For the first time ever, the medical personnel, veterinarians and staffers behind the scenes on race day will have access to ultra-fast Internet speeds with AT&T Business Fiber. Personnel such as veterinarians and medical staff will be able to share high definition images in seconds on race day, when time is of the essence. These blazing fast Internet speeds are 20x faster than a typical connection.

Nichols Canyon Pointed to Iroquois, Bonus [National Steeplechase Association]

Nichols Canyon Pointed to Iroquois, Bonus [National Steeplechase Association]

Andrea and Graham Wylie’s Nichols Canyon is on course for a return trip to Nashville and a date with destiny in the $200,000 Calvin Houghland Iroquois (Gr. 1) on May 13.

At stake will be the $500,000 TVV Capital Iroquois-Cheltenham Challenge, a bonus paid to the winner of the Calvin Houghland Iroquois and the Sun Bets Stayers’ Hurdle (Eng-Gr. 1) in the same 12-month period. Purses and bonus total approximately $800,000.

Nichols Canyon claimed the first leg of the challenge on March 16 with a courageous charge up Cheltenham’s heartbreak hill to notch a dramatic victory in the Stayers’ Hurdle.

Iroquois Steeplechase Partners With Christine A. Moore, Gus Mayer for 2017

Iroquois Steeplechase Partners With Christine A. Moore, Gus Mayer for 2017

For the second year in a row, the Iroquois Steeplechase has partnered with Christine A. Moore of Christine A. Moore Millinery and Nashville retailer Gus Mayer for the annual Spring event which will be held Saturday, May 13, 2017.

A familiar name in the fashion niche of the horse racing world, Moore was first named the “Official Milliner” of the Iroquois Steeplechase in 2016 for its 75th Anniversary event and quickly came on board for a second year. Her pieces are sold in Tennessee exclusively at Gus Mayer -- a longtime supporter of Steeplechase and a favorite of the event’s patrons when it comes to shopping for race day fashions.

“Christine is passionate about racing events and producing hats and fascinators that are comfortable, sophisticated and add to the glamour and overall experience of a day at the races,” said GeorgeAnn Dingus, Director of Sponsorship and Development for the Iroquois Steeplechase. “Gus Mayer has been a valuable sponsor of ours for many years, and the decision to continue a relationship with both their team and with Christine is an honor for us.”

Iroquois Steeplechase Hosts Watch Party for First Leg of $1 Million Challenge

Iroquois Steeplechase Hosts Watch Party for First Leg of $1 Million Challenge

The public is invited to join the Iroquois Steeplechase team for a Watch Party live from England’s largest sporting event. The first leg of the million-dollar TVV-Iroquois Cheltenham Challenge will be shown live from the UK’s Cheltenham Festival on Thursday, March 16 at Sam’s Place from 9:15 a.m. until 11 a.m. Complimentary brunch and beverages will be served.

The telecast of the Grade One Sun Bets Stayers’ Hurdle is of particular significance to Nashville. The Cheltenham Challenge was recently renewed with a new title sponsor -- local private equity firm TVV Capital -- and the winner of the Hurdle will be qualified to travel to the U.S. this May to compete in the Calvin Houghland Grade One Stakes at the Iroquois Steeplechase for the chance to win a $500,000 bonus.