For my second edition of Stories from off the Track, I will be featuring Aimee and Courage, from SprinklerBandits. If you haven't heard of their blog, go check it out.
A bit about Courage:
Courage is a 2005 OTTB out of California. My favorite bit of trivia about his early life is that the summer of his two year old year, he was sold for 60k and then 40k, so I call him my $100,000 horse. He ran very consistently as a young horse. He had a year off, which I believe is when he had chips removed from his ankles and knee. He returned to racing sound, and ran through his eight year old year. He won about 40k on the track, so not wildly successful, but no slacker.
How we met:
We met at the racetrack. He was running out of a friend's barn at our local track. I was caught by his dashing good looks, charming personality, and incredible brain from day one. I started hanging out at the track and he was my buddy. When the owner decided to retire him, the trainer gave him to me. I was blown away by the generosity. I certainly couldn't say no.
Courage has only been off the track a little over six months at this point. I started him into work immediately because I wanted to put basics on him while the weather was good and he was still used to having a rider. He's had the past couple of months off to reset physically, but he's coming back great! He seems to remember everything we worked on last winter, but he's moving like a whole different horse. My biggest training challenge is just to remember that he's green at what I'm asking him to do and let him take his time. He's a quick study and a joy to be around.
I try not to make plans with horses. It never goes well. That said, I think he'll make a superb hunter/jumper. We're working in that direction. My end goal is a hunter derby, but we have a long ways to go to make it there. For now, I'm just enjoying introducing him to life as a sport horse and enjoying the ride.
|A painting I did of Aimee and Courage.|
Note: Photographs are from SprinklerBandits.
I am always looking for people to spotlight, so if you own an OTTB and would like for him/her to be spotlighted, email me at email@example.com. I do have a couple people lined up, so yours will not be the next one but I will make sure you get your spotlight done.