The riders and trainers rode their horses through rain, sleet and snow in preparation for the spring races.
Camden, SC (WLTX)- Camden-based trainer Arch Kingsley spent the winter training Top Striker, one of the horses taking part in Saturday's Carolina Cup.
"This has been the most extreme that I have ever known, especially down here and I have been coming here for 20 years," Kingsley said.
Kingsley says it has been hard to get the proper amount of training into the horses because of the harsh elements they were forced to ride and work in.
"Snow and ice and hard ground makes for challenging conditions. Luckily, everybody was subjected to the same thing so I am not going to use that as an excuse no matter what happens," Kingsley said.
Just like top athletes, the horses have a full team to make sure they are ready for the spring races. Roger Stranc is an equine therapist. He says while humans like 70 and 80 degree temperatures, the horses are happy with 50's and 60's.
"The like to go but you have to be careful to not let them sweat too much," Stranc said. "It has to be a balance between the trainer and rider."
The Carolina Cup typically draw in 65,000 people from across the Southeast. Gates open at 9:00 a.m. Saturday.