The year-old child let her hand slide through the tantalizingly soft coat of the tall Thoroughbred.
Sitting in a specially fitted saddle with handlebar, the wee Ontario child named Tenley leaned toward the front of the saddle, and reached her hands through the ex-racehorse’s silky black mane and down to his soft, smooth withers.
Instantly, Tenley hooked on horses, and 12-year-old ex-racehorse Kadin, who was already impressively showing for his owner Edie Urbasik and her daughter Kayla, got yet-another post-racing job: lesson pony for a pint-size rider!
To those who scoff at Thoroughbred ex-racehorses, who call them crazy, un-trainable or even mean, Urbasik just chuckles a little, and thinks of the “kind of funny day” last year when her friend’s wee grandchild decided it was high time she do something other than loll around in a baby carriage.
Race name: Tall Glass
Show name: Admit Nothing
Barn name: Kadin
Sire: Canyon Creek
Foal date: May 15, 2001“I’m friends with Tenley’s grandmother Leah, and last summer they came out to the barn and I said to my friend that it’s not fair to bring her out her and not let her go for a ride,” Urbasik recalls. “So I got Kadin, tacked him up and put Tenley on. He was the perfect gentleman. They walked around the outdoor ring and after they were done, she kissed his neck and patted him every so carefully.”
It was clear the child loved the experience. And the “bug” took hold pretty quickly after that.
“Next thing we knew, Tenley had her own saddle, paddock boots, helmet, breeches and grooming tote and rides Kadin every Monday night!” Urbasik says. “And she’s so dedicated. She rarely misses a ride, even during the extremely hot and cold days.”
Tenley’s grandmother Leah admits the first time she placed her granddaughter in the saddle, she was a bit nervous. Both adults held onto the child and the horse.
But all her little grandchild knew was that being on a horse was the very best place to be. “She’s almost 3 years old now, and this is all she wants to do,” Leah says. “She even has a pink princess shovel to help clean out the stalls, and she cries when we finally have to drag her away from the barn.”
OffTrackThoroughbreds.com salutes Kadin, who raced under the name Tall Glass. Just one more ex-racehorse disproving the myth that Thoroughbreds are “crazy.”
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