It has been a few days, but I would like to update my page with a topic about a local horse race in Mochizuki town, Saku city.
Our Chinese boys, agricultural trainees, went back home at dawn on 3rd Nov. Having seen them off, my husband and I decided to go for a date somewhere. There had been a TV news informing a horse race in Saku city, so we set out for an hour drive to Saku.
According to Mr. Daikuhara, a section chief for Ecomony & Construction Division in Mochizuki town hall,
Mochizuki aea used to be one of the main places for breeding horses for the Imperial use since the Heian- period, roughly 1000 years ago.
Horses bred here were of the highest quality and favored by lords and Shoguns throughout history.
Also, horses served as an indispensable workforce for farmers. They were like family members for farmers,and there used to be an annual horse race by local people.
In recent years,however, as demands for horses decreased, the horse race, too,had its brank years. With the beginning of the Heisei-Era in 1989, the people of Mochizuki re-started the annual event in order to cheer up the area.So it is the 21st time this year.
- the participants preparing with their horses
On the TV news I saw earlier, there could be seen children on horsebacks, so we assumed there must be local parents crazy about their children’s skills on horsebacks. Just like we used to be with our kids’ speed skating a decade ago.
The races for adults were more fierce.
The venue was a local ground for sports events,and there were a lot of local groups installing tents to sell their hand-made dumplings, rice-balls, hotdogs,etc.
There were no professional Takoyaki, or okonomi-yaki stalls, but the local groups had enough varieties of food and even local farmers had their products brought, so the atmosphere was all the more lively.
By the way, how to bet on horses; there is no money betted on.
1,People are given a copy of a program for the races .
2,They see the races while checking the riders’ names on the program.
3,As the preliminaries finish, people forecast a likely winner and write the number of the horse on a sheet of paper and cast in a ballot box.
4,Who wrote down the right number will get a prize! A chinese cabbage and a baseball cap with Mochiauki printed on.