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In her darkest hour mare finds safe home

Martha Sue was bound for a slaughterhouse when she caught the eye of her rescuer three years ago. Underweight and matted, the ex-racehorse didn’t look like much when she was loaded up on a trailer and driven from the auction house in New Holland, Penn. to Akindale Thoroughbred Rescue in New York. “She’d been in the kill pen for about a week before she was rescued,” says Akindale exercise rider Melissa Hogan. “I remember being told that she was almost impossible to lead to the auction ring when people came to rescue her. She didn’t want to leave her food.” […]

Where the limelight rarely shines

Rebecca and Robert Anderson don’t wear masks and capes when they saddle up and head to work. But when they swoop in to stop a runaway racehorse, or save a jockey from hitting the dirt, they appear to whoosh in like a superhero come to save the day. In seconds, something can go wrong on a racetrack. It did in Race 5 on Aug. 21, 1998 at the former Bay Meadows racetrack. Immediately after the starting gate opened and seven horses surged forward for an evening race, a jockey fell. The scared horse spun and careened the wrong way around […]

OTTB blogger becomes exercise rider

Natalie Keller Reinert was leaning toward a career in journalism when she got the call. Ex-racehorse Final Call beckoned this January with an opportunity for both. The trustworthy gelding would get to retrain in a new discipline; and Reinert, a onetime journalism student, would get the chance to funnel her passions for writing and Thoroughbreds into a grand experiment in riding and blogging. Blogging on her website Retired Racehorse Blog, and taking a cue from National Public Radio’s “do it yourself reporting style,” as she describes it, Reinert began a journalistic chronicle of the adventures of retraining Final Call. Along […]