Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Wildlife Wednesday - a new horse

Yesterday was Melbourne Cup day (hope you backed a winner!), so in keeping with the horse racing theme, let me introduce the newest addition to the family.

Dad and I lease half the tail of this country racehorse. So far she hasn't done too much, and had no huge runs. She's young and learning.

The last half a tail, was retired to the paddock as a cranky horse that couldn't learn. She was sent from friends to the trainer because they hoped he'd have better luck with her. He did - only one person came off her and they weren't injured! Not a great thing. The trainer called her 'that black mare.' Since she wasn't winning, even with the attitude, she wasn't worth keeping in work. My friend has huge paddocks full of failed race horses, so she went out there to graze her days away, in a herd of horses. Not a bad life. I bet she ends up the boss!

So, enter the new trial horse. I'll let you know if she does great things!

We saw her run in a trial at Parkes. She did okay. Then she had a run in Wellington and did okay. A run at Narromine had her jostled in a pack, so she stopped and backed right out of the race. It was the first time she'd been caught in a pack, and had a different jockey aboard, so hopefully she'll learn from that. A run in Dubbo had hopes but was a bit longer and she didn't make the distance. I think she'll probably go for a holiday and come back better. Fingers crossed!

Dad was with me at Parkes and he got to meet my friend who owns the horse, and the trainer, and jockey. I think he was really chuffed. It's such fun to do something crazy like this with Dad. He's always dreamed of owning a racehorse and passed that dream on to me. So we're ticking off a dream, together, and it's a lot of fun!

NOTE: Two horses had horrible ends to their big race yesterday - Admire Rakti collapsed after the race and died, while Araldo was spooked, jumped a fence and broke a leg and when I'm writing this, is in surgery.

I hate that this happens. I hate horses dying. But having lost a pleasure horse in a freak accident, I know that accidents happen and sometimes they kill horses. Sometimes horses die for no reason too. Horses, especially thoroughbreds, are flighty animals who run to get away from things that scare them - it's how they're bred. I've watched cattle walk through fences and come out unscathed, while a horse will do the same and end up a mess.

I'm always torn with racing. I love the excitement but I loathe the injuries and death.


  1. Cate - very well said on the injuries to the horses in the Melbourne Cup. I work with a horse-mad lady who has a 17 year old mare with leg problems, she spends a fortune at the vet, and she said much the same thing to me: horses drop dead in the paddock, they get themselves into all sorts of trouble all the time. It's unfortunately, but you're right, flighty is how they're bred.
    I'm so jealous of you and your horses. I'm guessing it's Sue that's been retired. Good luck with this mare, she looks lovely in the photo. And it's great you can do this with your dad.
    Loved this post!

  2. Thanks, Lily. Yes, I've done the spend a fortune at the vets thing and it's heart breaking. They're such gorgeous animals, it's so difficult when something goes wrong.

    Yes, Sue's retired and living in luxury without being annoyed by people trying to ride her! She'll be happy!

    I'm so lucky to be able to do this with Dad. Thanks for enjoying the post.

    Cate xox