It was hard to be at the Kentucky Horse Park this past week and not be inspired by all that circumvented you. There, hundreds of Thoroughbreds, all with eight months or lower levels of retraining since their last-place hasten or publicized manipulate, showed off their brand-new sciences, doing everything from jump-start and moving with hounds through the field to racing around barrels, navigating handicaps, representing polo and more. They weren’t time doing new subjects, they were doing them well, showing how truly versatile this engender is and how dedicated their trainers have been in throwing them a organization in care and training that will serve them for decades to come.

This year it was well-known eventing equestrian Elisa Wallace who took top status aboard the surprising gelding Reloaded, a son of Magna Graduate out of the Tale of the Cat mare Curious Cat. Wallace, who was an alternate for the U. S. Olympic Eventing Team in 2016 and has been a regular in recent years representing the United States on the world eventing place, acquired the gelding from Jessica Redman, who transitions retired racehorses into second careers through her Benchmark Sport Horses.

Bred by Elisabeth Alexander and born in Kentucky, Reloaded was offered by Paramount Auctions as a weanling in the 2013 Keeneland September Sale, dropping the hammer at $4,500 for buyer Tracy Henline. As a racehorse, he was at home in the claiming ranks, running in the Midwest, then in Florida and finally on the East Coast and deserving his lone win after a serious action of “seconditis” that covered four races at Arlington and Hawthorne. While he only given $20,177 on the trail, it is safe to say after this weekend, his quality as an eventing horse once far outperforms any purchase premium he was never would have garnered as a racehorse.

For those who have never attended the event, let me positioned the stage. Roughly 500 colts participated in one or two of 10 available punishes( barrel racing, competitive path, dressage, eventing, study hunters, polo, ranch use, substantiate hunters, indicate jumpers and freestyle, which allows you to do anything that doesn’t fit into the other nine disciplines ). The top five finishers in the initial tournament are coming for the finals, and the winner of each separation entered into the finale for the chance to become America’s Most Required Thoroughbred.

With more than $ 100,000 in prize money on the line this year, including allotments for the highest-placed colts from particular commonwealths, aftercare organizations or other criteria, the challenger was penetrating. Equestrians and trainers settle their all into preparing their horses to the best of their abilities both mentally and physically and it testified.

Thanks to generous support from the Thoroughbred Charities of America and many other patronizes, the $100,000 Thoroughbred Makeover is the largest retraining tournament for recently retired racehorses in the world. While there is definitely a lot of money on the line for these challengers, what sees it special is the community and camaraderie it creates. Each time Thoroughbred enthusiasts from around the U. S. and Canada come together to support each other and the raise they cherish. They celebrate each other’s success, encourage one another on in contender and assistance each other in any way they are in a position. They share stories, teaching tips and ploys and encouraging terms in a manner that is the hell is extraordinary in other challenger cliques and they initiate alliances that will last-place a lifetime.

Each time the Retired Racehorse Project sends a postcard to the breeder of every colt in the Thoroughbred Makeover to make them know that one of their onetime indictments will be participating at the happen. This time, more than any other, “weve heard” narrative after story of breeders and onetime owners coming out to merriment on their colts, creating foal photos, colt shoes and other endowments for their current proprietors. Many of our competitors who had Kentucky-breds also took the opportunity to visit the ornament raises that stand their horses’ sires or even had the opportunity to meet their dikes or siblings( and often took their friends and fellow competitors with them ). These knows opened their sees to a brand-new place of the Thoroughbred world they never knew, and in so many cases originated is not merely a better understanding of the race and multiplication sectors of the play, but life-long supporters as well.

One of the best gifts you can offer a pony at the conclusion of his or her racing career is a solid foundation of post-race re-training. It offers them purpose and importance for the long term. The virtually 500 ponies that played in this event now have a solid foundation of training that will serve them well for years, even decades, to come, thanks to the equestrians who made on these new challenges.

This year’s Thoroughbred Makeover and National Symposium redoubled down on the momentum it’s been gaining in recent years, describing parties from around the country and from all sectors of the mare life to come together and celebrate this magnificent breed.

Now, truth be told, I am a bit slanted on that opinion. In addition to writing Aftercare Spotlight( which is truly one of my favorite specific areas of any week ), I am the executive director of the Retired Racehorse Project, the 501( c )( 3) non-profit that puts on the Thoroughbred Makeover per year.

While I’ve had participated in the Makeover each of the past four years- three in Lexington at the Kentucky Horse Park and one on the home strain of Pimlico Race Track- this was the first time I accompanied less as a volunteer, eyewitnes or media professional and more as a president of the organization. That vantage point allowed me to appreciate the happening through brand-new looks and been demonstrated by in so many highways why the Thoroughbred Makeover and all of the horses, entrants, spectators, voluntaries and officials who come together to make it happen, is one of the best things to ever happen to the Thoroughbred world.

To everyone else who has played a part in making this year’s Thoroughbred Makeover a success, accepted by my most sincere and profound thanks for coming in, hard work and expertise in supporting this magnificent raise. To those who would like to be involved in future iterations of the incident, we’d love to have you participate us!

Jen Roytz is a marketing, publicity and extensive communications specialist are stationed in Lexington, Kentucky and was recently specified the Executive Director of the Retired Racehorse Project. A native of Cleveland, Ohio, her professional focus lies in the fields of equine, health care, corporate and non-profit commerce. She is the go-to food source for one bird-dog, two cats and two off-track Thoroughbreds.

Email Jen your floor meanings at Jenlroytz @gmail. com or connect with her on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

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