Mike Valenti: Saratoga’s The Best Summertime Tradition

Ice cream, pool time, ball games, road trips with the family — What’s your favorite summertime tradition?

Mike Valenti knows his: Spending time at the Saratoga Race Track in New York, where horses have been racing for 150 years. 97.1 The Ticket fan Jeremy Kucera agrees race day is the best summertime tradition, writing on Twitter, “Every Father’s Day NASCAR race with dad and brothers. Cheap tickets. Great tailgates.”

Narrated by the inimitable Tom Durkin, enjoy this video about the experience of spending a summer day at the racetrack — where fans get an up-close and-personal view of the horses and riders. “One of the things that really sets Saratoga apart from any other racetracks is that you are so close to the competitors … You can get an up-close appreciation of these athletes,” Durkin says.

What’s with the seven bells that mark the time 17 minutes before post?

“That indicates, well, we’re not really sure what that indicates, they’ve just been doing it for 150 years and we just keep on doing those things at Saratoga, just because we’ve always done them,” Durkin says with a gentle laugh.

Related: Top 10 ways to beat the heat in metro Detroit.

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