Beautiful Vietnam
Horse race festival stirs up Bac Ha District
  • By Pham Ngoc Bang | | June 12, 2012 09:25 AM

Thousands of Tay Bac ethnic people and tourists gathered to enjoy the traditional Open Horse Race in the northern mountainous province of Lao Cai.


The race starts 

The race is part of a tourism programme called "Reversion to Original Point 2012", jointly held by three the provinces of Lao Cai, Yen Bai and Phu Tho.

66 racers are chosen to compete in the traditional race, without saddles. The racers who are fondly called "barefoot cavaliers", are all farmers from Bac Ha, Si Ma Cai and Xin Man districts.

To prepare for the race, each racer choses and trains their horse carefully before the festival. Each round has four horses racing on a 2,000 metre route and only two of the horses will be qualified for the next round.

The race has attracted attention and interest of many locals as well as tourists.

On June 10, the organisation board awarded the winner, Vang Van Huynh, the cup and VND20 million (USD958). The runner up, Sung Seo Dung, was given VND10 million (USD480) and third place went to Vang Van Quyet, who received VND7 million (USD335). The prize for the fourth place was clenched by Vang Van Thuc, who got VND3 million (USD143).

A team award was also given to Na Hoi Commune, the second prize went to Ta Van Chu and the third prize went to Si Ma Cai Commune.

66 racers participated

Around 20,000 came to watch

The horses race towards the finish line



Some horses couldn't be controlled



The winner Vang Van Huynh


Winners of the race

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