Among a field of approximately 100 dogs, several local pups will be looking to claim this year’s title of “Fastest Wiener in the West” at the 26th Annual Wienerschnitzel Wiener Nationals on Saturday at Los Alamitos Race Course. The annual event will again benefit the Seal Beach Animal Care Center.
Three Seal Beach dogs are also slated to participate; George (with CJ and Emmy Jacobs) and Sisi (with Jason Ghareebo and Kiley Majeski). Sisi is among the older dogs racing at 12 years of age. Another 12-year-old racer is also from Seal Beach. Wheezy a rescue dog who had overcome a sever weight gain but was able to get back down to a healthy weight and ran last year as an 11-year old. Wheezy will be returning this year.
Sisi joined Jason and Kiley’s home back during the pandemic. Sisi was rescued after her previous family had to give her up. Kiley has attended many Wiener Nationals in the past and loves the event. To have her dog among the competitors is a “dream come true,” she said.
“She came to us when we both needed each other so much,” Kiley said.
Despite her age, Sisi loves to run and still has some speed. Like many of the competitors, playfulness could end up hurting her time. During practice runs Sisi and many of the dogs seemed more interested in chasing each other around the course instead of running straight to the finish.
“Our goal is just to cross the finish line,” Kiley said.
George does have youth on his side as he is just a year-and-a-half old. He’s also competing for the first time, but his family has been working on training regime, getting him to run on the beach and up stairs to build strength and increase what is already some natural speed. But like Sisi, he can get distracted by play running.
“If he can make it to the finish line, he should be a contender,” CJ said.
Los Alamitos resident Jennifer Davenport and her young racer, Tony, will also be among the field of racers. Tony, a seven-month-old dachshund is making his first appearance in the race.
Davenport said they have practiced a little and they were on hand for a practice session on Monday at the race course. For the most part, Davenport said they are just going to “wing it.” Tony will have plenty of support, Davenport said, as Tony has a lot of friends and family planning to attend.
“He will have a full section of fans,” Davenport said.
The event has racers from all over Southern California, as far away as places like Bakersfield, Moreno Valley and Ventura. Also scheduled to be among the field will be Burr, who lives in Cypress with his human Ariana Gonzalez and Buddy of La Palma, who lives with Michelle Almazan.
The Wienerschnitzel Wiener Nationals will get underway at 6:30 p.m. The dogs compete in 50-yard dashes over the racetrack at Los Alamitos, the same one where the horses run. The field will be whittled down to a championship field that is scheduled to run at 9:15 p.m.
The winner takes home a $1,000 prize, a trophy and a custom doghouse shaped like a Wienerschnitzel restaurant.
Live horse racing will also be held in addition to the dachshund races. VIP seating to enjoy the event is available by calling 714-820-2681. General Admission tickets on the day of the event at Los Alamitos are $3 per person. Children 17 and under are admitted free. Los Alamitos Race Course features free general parking.