BILLINGS, Mont. - The 2015 Indian Relay Race Season begins June 12, 13 and 14th at Emerald Downs in Auburn, WA. The track has recently been acquired by the Muckleshoot Tribe. Fifteen of the best teams in the world are traveling to Washington to honor the Tribe and their important acquisition of Emerald Downs Racetrack. “This is a historic moment for the Indian Horse Nations,” says Calvin Ghost Bear of the Oglala Lakota Nation and owner of the World Champion Lakota Warpath team. “It is very important that our people and our children do not lose the important place the horse has in our history and our culture; we come to honor them and our ancestors.”
Champion Indian Horse Relay teams from the top Horse Nations around the country are converging on Emerald Downs for the “Battle of the Horse Nations Indian Relay.” Teams representing the top horse nations Lakota, Northern Cheyenne, Crow, Blackfeet, Colville, Shoshone-Bannock and Umatilla will participate.
Indian Relay Racing is America’s first extreme sport as well as the nation’s oldest sport, 500 years old by many accounts. Teams dressed in traditional regalia ride thoroughbred race horses around the mile race track exchanging horses every ½ mile. Warriors leap from one galloping horse to another creating organized mayhem. Fans are screaming and dirt is flying everywhere from the powerful and traditionally painted warhorses!
The top three teams from each of the main horse nations have been invited by Emerald Downs, the Muckleshoot Tribe, and the Professional Indian Horse Racing Association (PIHRA) to compete in this historic event. “These may be the best Indian Relay races ever run.” comments Gary Fellers, one of the PIHRA directors. “These are 15 of the top teams in the world and they have never really run as an elite group against each other before. This is historic. The Emerald Downs fans are in for a real treat.”
Normally, Indian relay teams run head to head against all comers. For the “Battle of The Horse Nations”, there is a little twist. At Emerald Downs, in addition to prizes for individual teams, there will be awards for each nation with the best aggregate results of their own three teams. It will add an additional element of excitement to Indian Horse Relay.
This is the first race of the 2015 “PoloGear™ Horse Nations Professional Indian Relay Series.” All summer long, more than 60 teams of the Professional Indian Horse Racing Association (PIHRA) compete in 16 sanctioned races, earning prize money and points to be invited to the “All Nations Indian Relay Championships” September 17-20, 2015 in Billings, Montana.
Check out www.indianrelay.com for information. Follow the Relay Race Season on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/pages/Professional-Indian-Horse-Racing-Association/476531622450149
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