On Aftercare

On Aftercare: With Pardo At the Helm, Aftercare Charles Town Stays on Track

Aftercare of Charles Town (ACT) was founded in 2013 under the corporate name of Equine Encore Performance at Charles Town. ACT's stated purpose is the rehoming, repurposing and retirement of Thoroughbreds that have raced and trained at Charles Town Races located in Charles Town, WV. The program was started with a fund from the Charles Town Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association and is supplemented with a paddock fee (start fee) of $5 per start. Until last fall, the paddock fee contribution was $2 per start. In 2019, ACT assisted 43...

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If We Open It, Will They Come?

The scope and pace of how the COVID-19 pandemic has affected daily life, the national economy, and by extension, the Thoroughbred racing business, is dizzying. For so many, the hardest aspect of the pandemic-induced crisis is the uncertainty about if and when things will go back to the old normal. The pandemic is like nothing we have experienced before and therefore, we have no models on which to rely. With the delayed opening of most racetracks, and with others having no opening day in sight, many people are asking if...

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Serenity and Grace

In 2018, Wendy Cyr wasn't quite ready to get another horse but often scanned the available off-track Thoroughbreds on the Thoroughbred Adoption Network. This time was different. She came to a dark gray one-eyed mare named Cosmic Serenity (Cosmonaut- Gracefully Done) aka Serena, listed by ACTT Naturally. Cyr's last horse was a gray mare named Serena who had to be euthanized at age 20 and her childhood mount was an off-track Thoroughbred with one eye who took her through pony club. She showed the post to her husband. "My husband...

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Thoroughbreds Give Combat Veterans a New Lease on Life at Down The Stretch Ranch

Boone McCanna was one of the leading jockey agents in Northern California, and prior to that in Washington, having represented Kevin Krigger, Dennis Carr, and Frank Alvarado among others. A third-generation horseman, McCanna had a vision to combine the tranquility of the his family's horse ranch outside Spokane, where his father would rest his racehorses in the off-season, with off-track Thoroughbreds and veterans in need of relief from the effects of PTSD suffered while serving in combat. In 2014, with the help of Jerry and Janet Hollendorfer, Down The Stretch...

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On Aftercare: Square Peg Pairs Children On Autism Spectrum With Off-Track Thoroughbreds

The Center for Disease Control reports that in 2020 approximately 1 in 54 children in the U.S. has been diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder (ASD). April is Autism Awareness Month, so it is fitting that we visit with Joell Dunlap, founder of The Square Peg Foundation, which pairs off-track Thoroughbreds with children affected by an ASD and their families. Founded in 2004, Square Peg operates out of two facilities in the Bay Area of California with 19 horses in total. Of the 19 horses, 13 are off-track Thoroughbreds. Before...

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On Aftercare: FLTRAC

Florida Thoroughbred Retirement and Adoptive Care (FLTRAC) originated as an effort put forth, beginning in 2009, by the Florida Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association (FHBPA), Calder Race Course, Gulfstream Park and professional jockeys, to find second careers and homes for horses that raced in South Florida. The non-profit organization itself was founded in 2010. When Thoroughbred trainer Jena Antonucci became the organization's vice president in 2016, there were an unmanageable 297 horses spread out between several locations in Indiantown, FL. One of the first changes she made was to consolidate...

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On Aftercare: United Pegasus Foundation Still Going Strong After 25 Years

The United Pegasus Foundation (UPF) was founded in 1994 by Helen Meredith. Meredith moved here from England in 1990 to work in the Thoroughbred racing industry as she had in the United Kingdom and France. Currently, UPF has two farms, one in Tehachapi with 46 horses, and the other in San Jacinto that holds the remaining of the 124 horses in UPF care. UPF was one of the first Thoroughbred sanctuaries to be accredited by the Global Federation of Animal Sanctuaries and the Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance. UPF and Meredith have...

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