VANCOUVER - There is a sense of optimism at Vancouver's Hastings Park these days that the sport of kings has somehow rounded the corner and become more popular with the general public.
Much of the credit is do, no doubt, to the recent run of jockey Mario Gutierrez and his colt I'll Have Another, who were forced to bow out of the Triple Crown race at the Belmont Stakes Friday because the horse suffered an injury.
Wearing fancy feathered hats, formal suits and dresses, the crowds still came out to the scenic Vancouver raceway Saturday to celebrate the jockey and his horse.
Madison Hall says she's been coming to the park for 10 of her 14 years and she's noticed a rise in attendance thanks to the success of Gutierrez, who made his start in Vancouver.
New mom Diane Gill brought her one-year-old daughter Naomi, saying the track has made efforts to make races even fun for kids.