Thoroughbred Retirement Foundation

A Quick Study on Track, Celestial City Now Teaches at Lowell

By Francis LaBelle, courtesy Thoroughbred Retirement Foundation Celestial City learned how to be a racehorse by continually proving himself against top competition. Each time he raced, he showed that the lessons he was learning were taking hold. Celestial City became a graded stakes winner, but just when his promising career was finally taking flight, he sustained an injury that ended his days as a racehorse. Now, he has a new home and a new purpose. On February 12, Celestial City joined the Thoroughbred Retirement Foundation's (TRF) herd at the Lowell...

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Former Jockey Purdom Finds His Calling at TRF Farm

Dean Purdom never lost confidence in his riding ability. He knew he had the skills. What he didn't have were the results. Purdom bounced all over the country, going from track to track until he wore out his welcome and headed to his next stop. The problem? He was trying to do the impossible, find success on the racetrack despite having an addiction to alcohol and cocaine. "I started back in the eighties," Purdom said. "I had a really promising career. I was the leading apprentice one meet at Pimlico....

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Sweet Named COO of Thoroughbred Retirement Foundation

Maggie Sweet has been named the new chief operating officer of the Thoroughbred Retirement Foundation (TRF), the Saratoga-based operation announced Monday. "We are thrilled to welcome Maggie Sweet to the Thoroughbred Retirement Foundation as our new Chief Operating Officer," said Patrick H. Mackay, Chairman of the Board of Directors at TRF. "Maggie's desire to support equine welfare, coupled with her extensive leadership experience, will undoubtedly contribute to the continued success and growth of our organization. Her skills and enthusiasm align seamlessly with our commitment to providing a dignified retirement for...

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TRF Presents Online Art Auction to Support Second Chances Program

The Thoroughbred Retirement Foundation, with the support of Saratoga Arts, has launched an online art exhibit and auction to support the TRF Second Chances Program and Second Chances Prison ART, both at Pleasant Valley State Prison. The exhibit, which features artwork created by incarcerated individuals in the Second Chance Prison ART Program, opened Jan. 1 and auction bidding will begin Feb. 1 and continue through Feb. 29. Proceeds from the auction will directly benefit the TRF Second Chances Program, supporting its mission to provide retired Thoroughbred racehorses with sanctuary and...

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TRF Launches 'Farrier Fund Campaign' For Giving Tuesday

In advance of Giving Tuesday on Nov. 28, the Thoroughbred Retirement Foundation has launched a special campaign called the Farrier Fund Campaign. The Farrier Fund Campaign, themed 'The Hoof Makes the Horse', is aiming to raise $25,000 this year. The fund will contribute directly to covering the costs of roughly three months of essential hoof care for over 1,600 horses within the TRF's herd. The Farrier Fund Campaign also aims to shine a light on the unsung heroes in equine care--the farriers, dedicated equine professionals who work tirelessly to tend...

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'TRF Cheers To 40 Years' Day Staged at Keeneland

Highlighted by a special check presentation in the winner's circle, the leadership of Keeneland recognized October 20th as "TRF Cheers to 40 Years" Day at Keeneland in celebration of the Foundation's four decades of commitment to the welfare and retirement of Thoroughbred racehorses. The Thoroughbred Retirement Foundation (TRF) has been a pioneer in aftercare for retired racehorses since its founding in 1983. Joined by TRF Board Member Katie LaMonica and Warden Abby Caudill of Blackburn Correctional Complex, the Keeneland team presented the TRF with a donation of $4,000 toward the...

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TRF Launches 2023 Hay Drive with $60,000 Match Gift from Santulli Family Foundation

The Thoroughbred Retirement Foundation (TRF) has received a $60,000 matching gift from the Santulli Family Foundation to launch the 2023 Hay Drive. The annual drive ensures that the herd of 425 retired racehorses cared for by the TRF are fed through the winter. The TRF's goal to help fill the hay loft is $120,000. "We are deeply grateful to the Santulli Family Foundation for their unwavering support of our mission," Kelly Armer, Executive Director of the TRF, said. "This generous matching grant will help us provide the necessary care to...

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Dr. Stowe Burke, DVM Joins TRF Board Of Directors

The Thoroughbred Retirement Foundation has appointed Dr. Stowe Burke, DVM, a Saratoga Springs native, to its Board of Directors. "I am deeply honored to join the Board of Directors at TRF," said Dr. Stowe Burke. "My lifelong passion for horses has guided my career path and I am thrilled to contribute to an organization that shares my dedication to the welfare of these magnificent animals." TRF Executive Director Kelly Armer expressed her excitement at Dr. Burke's appointment: "Dr. Stowe's exceptional background and commitment to equine care make him a valuable...

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TERF Awards $44k in Grants

The Thoroughbred Education and Research Foundation has awarded $44,000 in grants to seven organizations, with $2,500 to Amplify Horse Racing, $10,000 awarded to Belmont Child Care Association, Inc., $10,000 to Maryland Horse Foundation, $5,000 to MidAtlantic Horse Rescue, $7,500 to Retired Racehorse Project, $5,000 to Thoroughbred Retirement Foundation, and $4,000 to Wilson College. The missions and programs of the organizations selected to receive this year's grant awards reflect the values set forth by founders Herb and Ellen Moelis. TERF's current Board includes co-chairs Kathleen Anderson DVM, and James Orsini DVM,...

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`They've Taught Me To Be Human Again'

No chance. I mean, you just had to take one look at the guy. The tattoos, the words tumbling nervously through gaps in his teeth, the sheer damage he's soaked up. You didn't have to look up his record. It was like he had an invisible ball and chain. So, no, thank you very much for asking, but we don't need any help right now. He could be someone else's problem. No chance? Not even one? That was all Chris Courtney wanted: a single opportunity to break the cycle, a...

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Thoroughbred Aftercare Day Set For Sunday At Ellis Park

Six of North America's prominent Thoroughbred aftercare organizations will be featured on-site Sunday as part of Thoroughbred Aftercare Day at Ellis Park Racing & Gaming, the track said in a Thursday release. After post time at 11:45 a.m. (CDT), fans will be invited to learn more about Thoroughbred retirement at several booths set up on the concourse by Friends of Ferdinand, New Vocations, Second Stride, Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance, Thoroughbred Charities of America and Thoroughbred Retirement Foundation. The six participating Thoroughbred aftercare organizations will be featured in the Jeff Hall Winner's...

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NY Aftercare Day at Saratoga Aug. 17

The New York Racing Association, New York Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association, and New York Thoroughbred Breeders will host the third annual New York Thoroughbred Aftercare Day Aug. 17 at Saratoga Race Course. The featured race on Thursday's card will be the $125,000 Rick Violette, a 1 1/16-mile turf test for New York-bred sophomores named for the late trainer and NYTHA President who spearheaded the creation of the TAKE2 Second Career Thoroughbred Program and TAKE THE LEAD Retirement Program. Representatives from Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance-accredited organizations will be on-site to educate both racing...

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