The Kentucky Horse Park was transformed last weekend into an “OTTB melting pot.”
Thoroughbreds of all colors and temperaments gathered in the same arena to be put through their paces in a wide array of post-racing disciplines during the TCA Thoroughbred Makeover. It was enough to give goosebumps to Jen Roytz. The longtime horsewoman, writer and former marketing director for Three Chimneys Farm was gobsmacked.
“At one point I was sitting in the stands writing some notes for an interview and took a moment to look up and take it all in. In front of me in one arena there were horses preparing for competition in polo, jumpers, barrel racing, dressage, eventing and hunters all in one arena, and all Thoroughbred ex-racers,” Roytz says. “For someone whose career has been built on the backs of these animals (both figuratively and literally), and who is so passionate about the value of these horses beyond the track, it was quite moving.”
She describes the weekend event, which is the culmination of years of hard work by Steuart Pittman of the Retired Racehorse Project, as the “single most collaborative effort” she has witnessed between the Thoroughbred industry and the OTTB equestrian community.
“Everyone had such an upbeat and collaborative approach to the event. When we needed a few extra helping hands, people jumped to assist,” she says, adding, “Some of the biggest names in racing, from farms like Hidden Brook, Lane’s End, Darley, WinStar and more were on hand to cheer their grads.”
Read Roytz’s report on the TCA Thoroughbred Makeover here: http://www.paulickreport.com/horse-care-category/tca-thoroughbred-makeover-an-overwhelming-success/