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Question for Uncompetetive Race HOrse Owners

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  • Question for Uncompetetive Race HOrse Owners

    I'm wondering- do you sell them because they are no longer sound, or because they lack speed, or both?
    Please help me understand. I"m an OTTB owner.

    THx

  • #2
    I never sell my horses but have rehomed hundreds for others over the years. Each one is an individual and the reason they were no longer racing is individual. It could be either thing you mentioned or a host of other things, ie ran out of conditions, the meet ending, turf season over etc.
    McDowell Racing Stables

    Home Away From Home

    Comment


    • #3
      Loads of reasons. Slow, unsound, lack of money, horse hates it, partnership fell apart, it ran out of conditions, it can even be because horse is very difficult or dangerous to train.
      Shop online at
      www.KoperEquine.com
      http://sweetolivefarm.com/services.php

      Comment

      • Original Poster

        #4
        Thank you sharing that.

        I'm completely ignorant about the racing world, could you tell me what you mean by, "it ran out of conditions"- just curious on that one!
        Thanks!

        Comment


        • #5
          running out of conditions

          Usually means a horse has won is way out of them. Like wins a maiden race, then a non winners of two races, non winners of 3 races.....there are lots of conditions, which determine who is eligible to enter a race. Sometimes related to money won of course.
          I have not experienced the pleasure of owning a race horse that ran out of conditions. :-)

          Comment


          • #6
            We sell (or give away, lease, etc) horses when it no longer makes financial sense to keep them in the barn. At the extreme, that is when a horse is too lame to train. Or, it can be a horse that is not earning his keep due to poor performance, or is costing too much in vet bills compared to what he is earning, or a horse that simply is not able to race often enough (due to physical limitations or simply lack of the right races [for example, you have a horse that needs a mile on the turf and the track where you are isn't writing that race so your horse never gets to run]) to make it worthwhile.

            Comment

            • Original Poster

              #7
              Wow, there are so many really good reasons, I had no idea.
              Thx!

              Comment


              • #8
                A gamut

                Cruise, I'm the proud owner of two OTTBs who are no longer racing because I'm a total wimp! Well, not exactly, but they've been pasture puffs for a couple years and now they need a job to do.

                My mare bowed her last race and, when the owner wanted to "get rid of her", the trainer I worked for did some finagling to put her in my hands. Of the many, many horses I've worked with, I wanted her because she is: 1)big and gorgeous; 2)classy and sane; 3)a big-hearted gal who won me over. She is, simply put, the calmest, quietest, classiest horse I've ever had in my hands. She produced my yearling filly who is her mama's mini-me: has every positive trait of her mother's best attributes.

                My gelding, whom I bred from my daughter's first horse, an OTTB, retired because he developed a hot tendon more than two years ago and, at the time, I had access to a farm where he was rested and I never took him back to the track. Could still do it though. I'm erring on the side of caution although he's 100% sound to return to racing.

                Not all horses are competitive. Not all horses fall into the right hands. There are myriad reasons why they may be retired from racing: unsoundness being just one of them. It's really a crap shoot. And, IMHO, true racehorses rise above their circumstances if they're not in the best hands because sometimes not even an ignoramus can hold them down. Doesn't happen often, but does happen.

                And the converse can be true as well.

                I'm not a fan of the current sales program, with yearlings being pumped up for optimal presence and saleability and two year olds being rushed to race training and prepped for 2 y.o. in training sales. Depending on what their start has been like, many of these TBs are washed up before they get a chance to develop.

                Flame suit on!

                Comment

                • Original Poster

                  #9
                  Originally posted by foundationmare View Post
                  Flame suit on!
                  LOL- Well I love my OTTB- I wish he was sound though- I wonder if I describe his unsoundness (just thought of this as I'm typing) if anyone could shed some light on this type of injury because it seems to be a conundrum to the vet and chiro, at least to some extent.

                  He is a little short strided on his R H, you can see it particularly in downward transitions, he also seems off and on sore in his back, but it is primarly in the R buttocks/ligament something or other.
                  OK, so that' really vague- You can see the R side of his butt lift a little higher like he's compensating something.
                  The vet is positive that it's not hock or stifle or hip- bone stuff. YOu can actually feel a "knot" in his butt.
                  Any thoughts???

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Young horses many be available because they are just slow. A horse at a lower level track that is finishing well back in bottom level maiden claiming races doesn't have anyplace lower to try. A horse with only a few starts (all bad) costs as much to maintain per day as a decent one with a winning profile so...off he must go.
                    Some are unsound enough to stand race training, which can be strenuous. They might just need more time than the owner is willing to give them while they are not productive members of the team. Some are really busted up and suitable for little more than pasture puffery.
                    F O.B
                    Resident racing historian ~~~ Re-riders Clique
                    Founder of the Mighty Thoroughbred Clique

                    Comment

                    • Original Poster

                      #11
                      If you want to hear God laugh, tell him your plans...

                      LOVE IT!

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        In 15 months, we have had over 250 horses placed into Turning For Home--all from Philadelphia Park.

                        By far, the reason for retirement has been unsoundness problems, which range from chronic sore feet, minor joint chips, suspensory or tendon issues to serious fractures (condylar or slabs). The rest (very few) have retired because an owner or trainer does not want to cause small, nagging problems (arthritis, chips, possible suspensory issues) to become full blown problems and ruin the horse or seriously injure him.
                        And there are a few who just retire them because they truly cannot be competitive because they have no ability, which can easily be proven because I have all of their Past Performances and veterinary records, xrays, ultrasounds, etc.

                        Many of the unsound horses will be able to become sound for riding, or even showing, after layup or surgery, which we pay for, in order to assure them a chance at new careers.

                        Many are destined to be pasture pals only...
                        Turning For Home, Inc.
                        Philadelphia Park Racehorse Retirement Program
                        www.patha.org
                        turningforhome@patha.org

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Sorry, no insight on your horse's injury - I was going to say stifle, but sounds more like a muscle pull or tear or something. Good luck with it - hopefully the horse just needs time and will be fine.

                          Some unsoundness is breathing related - flipping their palate, entrapping, having had throat/flap surgery and sometimes it's not sucessful. Another issue can be dealing with a bad bleeder - one that bleeds through lasix. Sometimes it's just not manageable.

                          We sell or give away for the same reasons - unsoundness, too slow, or out of conditions. We've never sold one just for behavior, but there are definitely some that are tougher to have in the barn either for aggressiveness, nervousness, or just plain nastiness that I'm sure the trainer sometimes wants to sell them lol!

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Cruise1 View Post
                            He is a little short strided on his R H, you can see it particularly in downward transitions, he also seems off and on sore in his back, but it is primarly in the R buttocks/ligament something or other.
                            OK, so that' really vague- You can see the R side of his butt lift a little higher like he's compensating something.
                            The vet is positive that it's not hock or stifle or hip- bone stuff. YOu can actually feel a "knot" in his butt.
                            Any thoughts???
                            How long have you had him and had him back in work?
                            "smile a lot can let us ride happy,it is good thing"

                            My CANTER blog.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Cruise1 View Post
                              He is a little short strided on his R H, you can see it particularly in downward transitions, he also seems off and on sore in his back, but it is primarly in the R buttocks/ligament something or other.
                              OK, so that' really vague- You can see the R side of his butt lift a little higher like he's compensating something.
                              The vet is positive that it's not hock or stifle or hip- bone stuff. YOu can actually feel a "knot" in his butt.
                              Any thoughts???
                              Ossifying myopathy?

                              I once worked with a nice little QH mare with that condition. Her gait was always ever so slightly hitchy from her LH, most easily seen at walk & trot, but it was mechanical in nature and not painful to her. She had come from a working background and we suspected she had suffered some sort of trauma early on, perhaps badly wrenching a muscle doing cattle work -- you could feel a little knot in her behind.

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Originally posted by roady View Post
                                I have not experienced the pleasure of owning a race horse that ran out of conditions. :-)

                                LMAO! You would think it would be a pleasure, but I tell ya, you can hook some real bears. As the owner of two very classy old horses well out of conditions, I can only vouch for class shows. You'll see these warriors give it all, and still love it and pick up checks. But when they're good once as they ever were and put out one of their stellar performances, they can be stunning. When you have a horse who ran out of conditions the hard way up against open company horses who's been in upteen stakes, you kind of feel for them.

                                Here's another instance of a horse who was ready to move on from racing. I picked up a 4 year old NW2 at the very end of last fall. He showed a little speed and ability and was lightly raced so we took a chance, figuring he'd make a nice jumper if nothing else. Pointed him toward a little claiming race at the end of the meet and he got a fourth from that. Then we hit winter, and he got the winter off as he wasn't good enough to continue with racing at the bigger track that was still open. We wintered him, then put him back into training in the spring, but found he must have really liked his time on the farm as his stall would be wrecked with boredom overnight. Raced him once just to warm him up for the season, and right after the line when he pulled up he really pulled up. As in he stood frozen and didn't want to move. Jock tried everything but he was just tuned out. The jock jumped down, outrider rode over, and it was as if the horse came out of a trance; he made instant buddies with the pony and trotted back happily alongside him to us. No lame step, no tie up, no heat, no inflammation, no funky movement, no fear in his eyes or short striding. He just said that was enough of that.

                                Sold him to a family. He's spoiled rotten.

                                Comment

                                • Original Poster

                                  #17
                                  Originally posted by Barbara L. View Post
                                  In 15 months, we have had over 250 horses placed into Turning For Home--all from Philadelphia Park.

                                  By far, the reason for retirement has been unsoundness problems, which range from chronic sore feet, minor joint chips, suspensory or tendon issues to serious fractures (condylar or slabs). The rest (very few) have retired because an owner or trainer does not want to cause small, nagging problems (arthritis, chips, possible suspensory issues) to become full blown problems and ruin the horse or seriously injure him.
                                  And there are a few who just retire them because they truly cannot be competitive because they have no ability, which can easily be proven because I have all of their Past Performances and veterinary records, xrays, ultrasounds, etc.

                                  Many of the unsound horses will be able to become sound for riding, or even showing, after layup or surgery, which we pay for, in order to assure them a chance at new careers.

                                  Many are destined to be pasture pals only...
                                  THANK YOU!! Great info. Bless you for paying for their surgery!

                                  Comment

                                  • Original Poster

                                    #18
                                    Originally posted by caffeinated View Post
                                    How long have you had him and had him back in work?
                                    He's been in light flat work for about 2 months, but has been off for the majority of July and Aug.

                                    I have jumped a couple of very small X's and trot poles a few times, nothing major.

                                    Comment

                                    • Original Poster

                                      #19
                                      Originally posted by jengersnap View Post
                                      Here's another instance of a horse who was ready to move on from racing. I picked up a 4 year old NW2 at the very end of last fall. He showed a little speed and ability and was lightly raced so we took a chance, figuring he'd make a nice jumper if nothing else. Pointed him toward a little claiming race at the end of the meet and he got a fourth from that. Then we hit winter, and he got the winter off as he wasn't good enough to continue with racing at the bigger track that was still open. We wintered him, then put him back into training in the spring, but found he must have really liked his time on the farm as his stall would be wrecked with boredom overnight. Raced him once just to warm him up for the season, and right after the line when he pulled up he really pulled up. As in he stood frozen and didn't want to move. Jock tried everything but he was just tuned out. The jock jumped down, outrider rode over, and it was as if the horse came out of a trance; he made instant buddies with the pony and trotted back happily alongside him to us. No lame step, no tie up, no heat, no inflammation, no funky movement, no fear in his eyes or short striding. He just said that was enough of that.

                                      Sold him to a family. He's spoiled rotten.
                                      You know, I sometimes wonder if Cruise is faking it... Is that even possible

                                      Comment

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