Start Date: April 13, 2020 End Date: April 14, 2020
The Goat Race Festival begun in 1925, where Tobagonians decided they needed an equivalent to horse racing for the “regular folks”. The festival usually takes place in two locations every April; the Monday (Mount Pleasant) and Tuesday (Buccoo) after Easter Sunday. Each year large crowds are drawn to experience this spectacular event. Although we have other races in this arena like Crab Racing, the Goat races usually draw the largest crowds. Officials often use Facebook hoping to draw attention to the Festival. “Vote for your Goat” is where fans get to pick their favorite goats to win the race. The person who ends up with the most “likes” may win a weekend for two to Tobago.
Tobago is famously known as the “Goat Racing Capital of the World,” this event is by far one of the most exciting past times of the island. A new arena was recently built in Buccoo, Tobago for about $100 million to accommodate these races. In this event, Jockeys and their goats race on a 100-yard (300 feet) grass field. Jockeys and their goats may train for months before participating in this event. Goats have their own stables, owners, trainers, jockeys and steeds. These goats are even given names like Rum Punch, while spectators get a chance to bet on their favorites. Jockeys run barefoot alongside their goats, holding on to their steeds, while coaxing to the finish line. There are even prizes for the lucky winners of the races.
After the goat races comes the crab races wherein blue crabs are coaxed to be the first to make it out of the circle drawn in the sand by their jockey. Both race days end in a street party which includes entertainment, street food and children’s events.