What do racehorses do when their careers on the track are over? Turns out they can do just about anything, and the Thoroughbred Makeover competition next week at the Kentucky Horse Park is the perfect place to see them in action. WUKY Horse Capital reporter Samantha Lederman brings us this preview.
Over 400 horses are entered for this year’s Thoroughbred Makeover, and they all have one thing in common - they’re former racehorses with less than a year’s training since leaving the track. Riders can choose one or two of ten disciplines to specialize in.
The judging for individual discipline honours takes place around the Horse Park on Thursday and Friday Oct 5th and 6th, rather like the playoffs. The top 3 from each discipline then battle it out on Saturday 7th October for the coveted “America’s Most Wanted Thoroughbred” title, awarded to the ultimate champion. With $100,000 of cash and prizes it’s the most lucrative, and perhaps prestigious Retraining of Racehorses award in the world.
Competitors come from all over the US and Canada, but some of them will leave empty-handed.
Forty of the horses are what’s known as ‘war horses’ with over 50 starts under their belts, and four more have raced over a hundred times. The top earner in the Makeover Field won almost $1.2millon dollars during his career on the track, and the most popular sire is Congrats, represented by five entries.
More information is available on the retired racehorse project website.