A Wild Time At The Races

Jan 13, 2013

Nom De Plumage and the ostrich jockeys celebrating in the winner's circle after Saturday night's race.
Credit Dionne Grayson / WWNO

There were a few unfamiliar steeds at the New Orleans Fair Grounds Saturday night — exotic animal trainer Joe Hedrick brought some ostriches and zebras to the track to fill out the race card for the second installment of the Struthio Stakes.

It was the first-ever zebra race in the South, and the biggest crowd at the track since Hurricane Katrina, according to track spokesman Jim Mulvihill.

In addition to the zebras and ostriches, the Struthio Stakes (named for the ostrich's genus — its scientific name is Struthio camelus) featured music, food, a race between sports team mascots... and even some actual horse racing.