Hagyard Equine Medical Institute Sponsors Ex-Racer in
America’s Most Wanted Thoroughbred Makeover
Hagyard Equine Medical Institute’s Sport Horse Program is partnering with Heritage Horse Farm in Georgetown, Kentucky, to enter a son of Bernardini in the Retired Racehorse Project’s Thoroughbred Makeover, to be held October 23-25 at the Kentucky Horse Park.
Monopolize, by Bernardini out of the Thunder Gulch mare Jaramar Rain, will be owned by Chad Mendell and stabled at his Heritage Horse Farm in Georgetown, Kentucky. Hagyard senior veterinary technician Julie Hall will be in charge of retraining the gelding for eventing, with help from other Hagyard staff and local experts.
“We want this to be a Hagyard-wide and community-wide project, to continue to meld the racing and sport-horse communities,” said Rhonda Rathgeber, PhD, DVM, of Hagyard. “We plan to involve as many Hagyard employees as possible in his retraining, and of course he will have full access to all of Hagyard’s veterinary resources. This is a great opportunity to educate the public on the medical aspects of transitioning a horse from a racing to a sport-horse career.”
The bay gelding raced four times, winning once, before a suspensory injury sidelined him. After his recovery, he was transferred to the Lexington arm of New Vocations Racehorse Adoption Program for rehoming.
“All of us at New Vocations are very excited and honored to have Monopolize be a part of Hagyard’s team,” says Anna Ford, New Vocations’ Thoroughbred Program Director. “He is a royally bred gelding who is very athletic and will represent our program well. Educating the public on what Thoroughbreds can do off the track is always part of our mission and we look forward to seeing him compete in the event this Fall.”
The Retired Racehorse Project is a nonprofit initiative to market former racehorses as sport horses. The previous Thoroughbred makeover competitions—held thus far at Pimlico Racecourse—have been extremely popular with sport-horse enthusiasts. This is the first time that the makeover is being held in Kentucky, with a new format that allows anyone to enter an eligible retired racehorse. Horses will compete in one or more of 10 disciplines, including English and Western sports as well as foxhunting, polo and “other”. On the final day, the winner of each of the 10 disciplines will compete against each other for the title of America’s Most Wanted Thoroughbred. The organization will be awarding $100,000 in prize money over the course of the weekend.
Every aspect of Monopolize’s care and training will be chronicled on the Hagyard website (www.hagyard.com) and Facebook page (www.facebook.com/HagyardEquineMedical) and on his personal blog site (address to come).
With more than 50 veterinarians and 139 years behind it, the Hagyard Equine Medical Institute is the oldest and one of the largest equine veterinary practices in the world. The institute offers a staff with qualifications unparalleled by any single non-university veterinary group in the equine industry, with 13 board certifications in specialty areas of Medicine, Surgery, Critical Care, Sport Horse and Theriogenology. A sport horse facility gives sport horse owners new options for diagnostics, treatment and therapies and includes an area to jog, longe and ride horses as well as a treatment area, farrier bays and an onsite forge to allow vets to work closely with farriers.