OTTBs

edited December 2013 in General Interest
Everyone, please use this thread to share stories about OTTBs, whether you own them, know them, or just stumbled across their story.

I own two OTTBs, Miss Fifty (or simply Fifty for short) and Wet Paint (Dexter). You may be familiar with Miss Fifty's special story. If not, please take the time to read my article about her on BloodHorse.com:
http://cs.bloodhorse.com/blogs/beyond-the-blinkers/archive/2012/12/20/ottb-spotlight-miss-fifty.aspx

I adopted Dexter from Remember Me Rescue in February 2011. He has been a joy! He has his own blog series on my blog, "Diary of Dexter":
http://pastthegrandstand.blogspot.com/search/label/diary of dexter

It has been a blessing to be involved with Remember Me Rescue. Through this wonderful organization, I have met many special OTTBs - some famous, some not so famous. They are such amazing creatures. I thought I'd share a few articles I've written about a few of the OTTBs I've met through RMR:

Lights on Broadway - http://cs.bloodhorse.com/blogs/beyond-the-blinkers/archive/2011/12/12/inspired-by-lights.aspx

Spanky - http://www.horseracingnation.com/blogs/grandstand/Spanky_of_the_Bluegrass_New_Beginnings_123

King of Speed - http://pastthegrandstand.blogspot.com/2011/12/king-of-speed-champion-in-eyes-of-many.html

Luxury of Time - http://pastthegrandstand.blogspot.com/2012/07/the-luxury-of-time.html

Be Bop Baby - http://pastthegrandstand.blogspot.com/2012/02/be-bop-baby-gentle-soul.html


While on the topic of OTTBs, please take the time to "like" the official fan page for a mare named Cherry Pink. She was one of my personal favorites to follow and I was able to see her race numerous times at Lone Star Park. I recently contacted her trainer and learned that she retired sound earlier this year and now lives happily on a Texas farm. You may remember her from my fun little blog post from March, "A Collection of Horses" (http://pastthegrandstand.blogspot.com/2013/03/a-collection-of-horses.html). She raced 58 times!

So be sure to keep up with Cherry Pink on her Facebook page! Here's the link: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Cherry-Pink/130604863651487

I just thought I'd get this thread rolling with the stories of some special OTTBs. So, please, share all the OTTB stories you want! I know I'm not the only one that loves to hear about them :)
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Comments

  • This is a great idea for a thread. I'll ask my sister if she wants to contribute stories about her OTTBs. I don't own any, myself, so my stories are all from a distance. Here's one:

    I had been following Tiger Eyed since reading in Bloodhorse about the two-year-old filly unexpectedly giving birth while training for her first start, back in 2008. I was worried when I stopped hearing about her, so this spring I was overjoyed to come across pictures of her looking healthy and happy as a recently retired 7-year-old, being prepared for life as an OTTB.
    Here's her information:
    http://www.teamkeen.com/horsesavailableintx/tigereyed.html

    She was adopted in February. I hope she's healthy and enjoying a second career, and it would be sweet if her connections are on this forum and choose to share information about her. I'd also love to know whatever became of her foal, which I have heard was trained as a polo pony.
  • @jen_bloom - Yes, Tiger Eyed was adopted through Remember Me Rescue, which I help out with when I get the chance :) The Keens and everyone involved with RMR are great people. I wanted to meet Tiger Eyed, but never got the chance to do so. All those pictures (except for the one of her with her foal) in the link you shared, though, were taken by my mom! What a beautiful mare Tiger Eyed is. I can ask Donna Keen if she can get an update on her if you'd like!
  • @jen_bloom - Yes, Tiger Eyed was adopted through Remember Me Rescue, which I help out with when I get the chance :) The Keens and everyone involved with RMR are great people. I wanted to meet Tiger Eyed, but never got the chance to do so. All those pictures (except for the one of her with her foal) in the link you shared, though, were taken by my mom! What a beautiful mare Tiger Eyed is. I can ask Donna Keen if she can get an update on her if you'd like!
    Wow do you know her foals name?
  • PastTheGrandstand: Wow - very cool that your mom took the pictures. Tiger Eyed certainly is a beautiful mare, and the pictures really capture her spirit, I think. I would love it if you could try to get an update, but understand if Tiger Eyed's current owner wants privacy.
  • Her foal went on to become a polo pony but dont know her location now. The foal was raised with a surrogate mom while Tiger Eyed remained in trainng. Tiger Eyeds last race was 1/19/13, she finished 10th.
  • How cool that you've started this thread, Mary! We are going through the process of adopting one of the OTTBs at Remember Me, but it is a slow process with how busy the Keens are and then this lovely weather that has been going on. We have only made one trip to the farm in Burleson so far, but we were able to meet Power Surge. Hopefully after Deputiformer wins his race in Florida this weekend we will be able to get together again and find out which horse will best suit our family. We are leaning toward Runnin Da Fences right now, but since we are new to horse ownership, we are appreciating all the help from Donna and Dallas and Vicky. This will be a cool thread to keep up with!
  • @jen_bloom - She is absolutely gorgeous. My mom told me Tiger Eyed was very kind and smart. I'll talk to Donna soon about possibly getting an update on her.

    @Celeste_in_TX - Thank you! That is wonderful. As you know, I got my Dexter from Remember Me and have met countless wonderful OTTBs there. The Keens and Vicki Morgan are great people! I hope you find the perfect OTTB from RMR. And yes, go Deputiformer!
  • Road to Slew may not be technically "off the track," but he is an ex-racehorse - a former graded stakes winner at that. Now nearly 19 years old, he has been a pony at Southern California tracks for about 10 years. Read about him in my newest "Ponies of the Track" article on Horse Racing Nation: Check out my third installment of my "Ponies of the Track" series, featuring Road To Slew - "Roady". Now nearly 19 years old, Road to Slew is a former graded stakes winner who enjoys his job as a track pony.

    http://www.horseracingnation.com/blogs/grandstand/Ponies_of_the_Track_Road_to_Slew_From_Racehorse_to_Pony_123
  • he looks good in red
  • Mary, I love the series on the track ponies!! They sure have a tough job to do! Thanks so much for writing about these unsung heroes.
  • @Celeste_in_TX - I am so glad that you enjoy the series! I certainly enjoy writing about the ponies.
  • Mary, I love your writing! I'm so glad that you write about the on-track ponies and the OTTBs. I hope other people will start sharing their stories.

    My sister has given me permission to share about her OTTBs, so I wanted to tell you about her gelding, Flight. He's an 11-year-old bay great-grandson of Secretariat. During his long career, he made 114 starts and finished in the top three over 60% of the time. He bowed a tendon in his last start and had to be vanned off, and was then donated to a thoroughbred rescue and rehab center called After The Races, which is where my sister met him.

    Flight is a very smart horse who quickly learns the best way to manage whatever situation fate hands him. If you put a broom within his reach he will grab it in his mouth and "sweep" the stable. My sister likes to enlist his help in cleaning the shedrow this way. He loves the ladies he is stabled with--he doesn't believe in letting the fact that he's a gelding interfere with his flirting! He will pitch a fit if his favorite mare, my sister's other OTTB, gets to go out and he is left behind in the stable. He loves to go on trail rides and he loves and trusts my sister.

    One of the horses that Flight shares pasture with is a bit of a bully, who likes to get between Flight and my sister when she goes out to get Flight or just to visit and bring him a treat. So, she and Flight figured out a way to deal with this other horse. When she goes out to meet Flight and the other horse gets in the way, she walks away to a remote corner of the field. After a couple of minutes, Flight will casually wander over, taking a circuitous route so the other horse doesn't notice what's happening, and that way they can have their visit. My sister feels like Flight understood her strategy right away. That's the kind of horse he is.

    Flight was a "cheap claimer," one of the thousands of horses who sometimes get treated like a piece of equipment to be used and then thrown away when it's no longer useful. Luckily, Flight's owners made sure that he could have a good retirement, and his big personality and intelligence have a chance to shine in a whole new environment. I hope that a day is coming when a decent retirement for all horses, from the stars to the claimers, will be the norm.

  • Thanks for sharing the story of your sister's OTTBs, Jen_Bloom. It sounds like her Flight has turned out to be one very smart guy. Horses minds work in such different ways but they are far more intelligent than we give them credit for. :)
  • Hi all - I have been reading the forum for a while and finally decided to join in :) I live in upstate NY near the Finger Lakes Race Track - they are (as far as I know!) the only track in the country to have an adoption center on the grounds. Some trainers literally walk their horses over there when their racing careers are over to start a new one! Olympic eventer Courageous Comet came from the Finger Lakes Race track. Its a great program that I wish other tracks in the country would emulate. (I was lucky enough to own one of their horses as well - his name was Bold Brian a great great grandson of Bold Ruler!)
  • Meant to post a link to their website as well...

    http://www.fingerlakestap.org/pages/about.html
  • @jen_bloom - Thank you for sharing Flight's story! He sounds like such a cool horse!
    @PlainBays - Thanks for joining in :) I love hearing about all the different organizations and programs that help these horses find forever homes after their racing careers. Hopefully we will continue to see more and more of these programs!
  • I forgot share the story of Mr. Meso on here on Friday. He is the latest horse to be featured in one of my "Ponies of the Track" articles. He won $467,510 on the track before becoming a pony, which was a transition he made VERY quickly. You can read about him here:
    http://www.horseracingnation.com/blogs/grandstand/Ponies_of_the_Track_Mr_Meso_The_War_Horse_123
  • Just for fun here's FIFTY facts about one of my OTTBs, Miss Fifty:
    http://pastthegrandstand.blogspot.com/2013/12/fifty-facts-about-fifty.html
  • Interesting stories. Thanks for posting jen_bloom and PlainBays, welcome to the commenting side. Miss Fifty sounds like a clever girl indeed. I "liked" her on the facebook page. Would you ever breed her? How old is she now?
  • @VA_in_CA - Thank you for liking Miss Fifty's Facebook page! We are considering breeding are, yes. She will be six next year.
  • That would be adorable, to see a foal by her side ^.^ she is so sweet faced she looks younger than 6
  • Oh good. Be sure to put her on MareStare when the time comes. LOL. Just kidding. She's a youngster for sure.
  • @VA_in_CA - Oh, I would love to do that!
  • I visited Remember Me Rescue for the first time in several months today. It was great to meet and visit several OTTBs while I was there. Among the horses I met while I was there were Power Surge, who was one of my stakes horses on the southern racing circuit, and another southern stakes winner, Su Casa G Casa. But my favorite parts of today's visit were seeing the Chilean group one winner, Matto Mondo, who was third in the 2009 Santa Anita Handicap and the first horse I was in a win photo with, as well as the always lovely Lights on Broadway and Yeah Me Do (Yammi). Love my visits to Remember Me!

    If you'd like to see some of the photos I took while I was there, I will soon be posting them on my Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/pastthegrandstand) and Instagram, @pastthegrandstand.
  • Thanks, Mary, Celeste, and VA_in_CA for your kind response to my story about my sister's horse, and welcome to PlainBays. Finger Lakes Race Track is not far from where my sister is, so I'm really glad to hear they're doing such a good job with retiring horses. I thought I should post the link to the website for After the Races, in case anyone is in the Pennsylvania area and thinking of adopting an OTTB. http://aftertheraces.org/
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