The Retired Racehorse Project (RRP) held its fourth annual Thoroughbred Makeover this past week, October 4-7, 2018 at the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington, Kentucky. The 2018 RRP Thoroughbred Makeover had 23 Louisiana breds entered in the competition, more than double the number that competed in the 2017 event. This year Louisiana breds competed in Barrel Racing, Competitive Trail, Dressage, Eventing, Field Hunter, Freestyle, Ranch Work, Show Hunter, and Show Jumper disciplines.
Retired Louisiana bred thoroughbred racehorses showed up in the top ranks in many of the ten different disciplines represented with Interactif Spy earning the number one spot in the Show Jumper category. Interactif Spy, a 2013 gelding (Interactif—Runaway Spy, Mt. Livermore), was bred in Louisiana by D&F Horse Farms LLC, and ridden by Morgan Boyer, a professional from Stokesdale, North Carolina. On the racetrack, Interactif Spy started three times as a three-year-old, with one victory and a second place finish. He retired with racetrack earnings of $9,305.
While this year was Boyer’s first time competing at the RRP Thoroughbred Makeover, she has competed in the Eventing discipline up to the intermediate level on a thoroughbred. She now works as a professional alongside her mother at Blue Line Farm, with plenty of customers who own off-the-track horses in training.
“Honestly I don’t think they’re for everyone because they’re very forward thinking, but that translates very well to a working horse,” Boyer said of off-the-track thoroughbreds. “It translates incredibly well to eventing. They’re catty and athletic; they’re cooperative. They just have the brain to try really hard. They’re so, so smart.”
Another Louisiana bred, Delightfully, a 2014 mare (Redding Colliery—Like a Lover, Pleasant Tap), earned third place in the Freesytle discipline. Delightfully was bred in Louisiana by Columbine Stable, LLC, and ridden by Amy Lent, a professional from Versailles, Kentucky. Delightfully was unsuccessful in her one bid on the racetrack and retired with earnings of $1,230.
An unplaced Louisiana bred gelding Bazillion Bells (Calibrachoa-Zada Rae, by Unbridled’s Song), earned sixth place in the Eventing discipline for professional competitor Kaitlin Hartford of Callahan, Florida. Bazillion Bells was bred by Joseph Adcock.
Two competitors from Louisiana also made the trip to the Kentucky Horse Park. Brooke Miller, head trainer at Woodland Hills Equestrian Center in Carencro, La, competed Classy Clown in Show Jumping and Eventing. Classy Clown is a 2014 gelding by Tenpins– Lady Button Eyesby Belong to Me. He was bred by Ada K. White.
Sarah Alexis Rouse competed as a Junior on her Pirate Island in Show Jumping and Barrel Racing. Pirate Island is by Storm Day– Jaycor Pass, by Pikepass. The 2008 gelding’s breeder is Maurice W. Smith.
The Louisiana Thoroughbred Breeders Association (LTBA) sponsored a $2,500 cash prize for the top-placed Louisiana-bred at the competition.
“The Louisiana Thoroughbred Breeders Association continues to make an investment in the future of our thoroughbreds by helping our former runners secure a beautiful life after their time on the racetrack is done,” said Roger Heitzmann III, secretary-treasurer of LTBA. “We believe that by assisting the Retired Racehorse Project, former racers have the ability to show to others the true beauty of the Thoroughbred, as well as their continued usefulness.”