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Just one of many riders and Thoroughbreds competing last weekend at the TCA Thoroughbred Makeover. Photo by Megan Stapley and courtesy Jen Roytz

Goosebumps at the Kentucky Horse Park

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 […]

Mike Keech and Brightly Shining enjoy a quiet moment.

Auction horse shows at Washington Int’l

Terrified and desperate, the red mare flailed in the confined auction-house stall like someone being buried alive. Unable to lay eyes on another horse for reassurance, the 4-year-old OTTB Brightly Shining became so frenzied at the Thurmont Auction in Maryland that she scared off every buyer who could have saved her from the slaughter pipeline. Except for one. Mike Keech had seen plenty of “crazy horses” in his 75 years, and wasn’t about to be deterred from at least taking a peek at the animal raising such a ruckus. Brightly Shining Sire: Posse Dam: Bright Shining Foal date: Feb. 14, […]

Certifiably Royal ran until he was 8 with 4 screws in his leg. And a guardian angel watching over him.

With screws in his legs, he ran on home

Certifiably Royal hit the Charles Town Race circuit in 2013 with one very nervous guardian angel monitoring his every step. With four screws holding together a leg that had failed just two years earlier, and the seasoned 8-year-old racing as much as two times a month, Stacy Ferris watched from afar and bit her nails worrying that one wrong step could do in the handsome, goofy, playful chestnut gelding she knew only briefly, but would never forget. “I knew he had screws in his leg and to see him just running and running and running worried me so much,” says […]