|Timing makes perfect|
|June 07, 2012 Jody Lamp|
Aaaannndddd...they’re off! This Saturday, June 9, horse racing enthusiasts may see a 34-year-old drought in the series of the Triple Crown Races, the Kentucky Derby, Preakness, and Belmont Stakes, come to an end if a three-year chestnut colt named, I’ll Have Another wins the 1 ½-mile race, known as, the Test of the Champion.
Since 1919, when Sir Barton became the first horse to win the Kentucky Derby, Preakness and Belmont Stakes (before the phrase “Triple Crown” was invented), only 11 horses have won racing’s most prestigious prize, the Triple Crown. Affirmed, in 1978, was the last horse to achieve the remarkable feat of winning all three races, at three different distances, at three different tracks, in the space of five weeks.
And as the muscle-chiseled, athletic machines bolt from the Belmont Park starting gate, the line of wheat harvesting combines will continue to make their way northward through America’s heartland.
Timing is everything…..whether it be horse racing or harvesting our nation’s food. Farmers need their wheat out in a timely manner as crop ripens on average 20 to 30 miles every day.
As soon as the yellow rose blooms in Texas, the wheat harvest usually begins in May and can last as long as six to seven months as custom harvesters travel from the plains of Texas to the high mountain areas of northern Montana. Every year, custom harvesting businesses, including families and their crews, pack their bags, stock their RVs and trailers, load their trucks and head south for an annual pilgrimage that involves hard work, hot weather, and an occasional moment to enjoy one of God’s painted masterpieces in the eastern and western skies.
I know it’s a lifestyle that would challenge the few luxuries I have become accustomed to and enjoy daily. Living in a travel trailer for months at a time, with long hours in a field and little time off would more than likely test even the most adventurous amongst us.
In the past few months since I started writing this weekly column, I also was named the national co-executive coordinator for the Great American Wheat Harvest documentary film, which will tell the stories ~ struggles, successes and failures, joys and sorrow ~ of America’s wheat harvesting families and crews, like the Zeorian Harvesting & Trucking, of Manley, Neb., who spend more than 100 days on the road. Although I haven’t had an opportunity to meet Tracy Zeorian, and her husband Jim, and their four daughters, in person, we have connected on Facebook, and I currently follow their adventures through the Syngenta and High Plain’s Journal sponsored blog, All Aboard Wheat Harvest.
During the process of securing funding and capturing the Zeorian’s stories, along with the other harvest family and crews like, Misener Family Harvesting, JKD Harvesting, as well as Kent Braathen’s crew in South Dakota and Colorado, I’ll also be attending several national conferences and conventions this summer to better equip my agriculture advocacy efforts.
Therefore, my regular column will take several weekly breaks in between, as I too capitalize on the perfect time and necessity of tending to business during a vital harvesting period. In the meantime, I plan on keeping in touch and advocating through the social media outlets. You can follow my “Bright Ideas! Brighter Future!” blog at : http://brightideasbrighterfuture.blogspot.com/. Or Twitter account at https://twitter.com/#!/lampprpro. To keep up with the documentary film and to hear the harvesting stories as we capture them, visit www.greatamericanwheatharvest.com.
And when you’re feeling social media adventurous, may I recommend #AgChat, a weekly moderated conversation on Twitter for people in the business of raising food, feed, fuel, fiber. It’s similar to conversations at the local grain elevator or coffee shop, only virtual. You are invited to join in every Tuesday, 8-10 p.m. ET.
Thank you for allowing me this time to share and “advocate” my passion for agriculture with you. And as we anticipate the potential for a Triple Crown winner this weekend with I’ll Have Another, let me arm with you a bit of horse racing trivia to share with your friends:
As the first Triple Crown winner, Sir Barton, finished up his career with a record of eight wins from 13 starts, and both divisional and Horse of the Year honors, he retired to stud, first in Virginia, and then in Nebraska.
Eventually purchased by J.R. Hylton, who owned a few racehorses, the old champion lived out his final years on Hylton’s farm in Douglas, Wyo., where he died on Oct. 30, 1937. Originally buried near his paddock, in 1968, Sir Barton was moved to Washington Park in Douglas, where he lies beneath a statue of a horse.
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