Both of our OTTBs began their racing career when they were under 3 years old.
Think about that.
Physically, horses aren’t completely finished growing until nearly 8 years old.
No wonder OTTBs are notorious for frequent gastric ulcers and horribly thin soles. (That’s not to say other breeds of horses in different disciplines don’t have ulcers or thin soles, but it is very common in OTTBs). They are bred to run for money, until they decide that they don’t want to run anymore, and early retirement becomes their fate. Many go on to excel in second or even third careers…
Our girls know that they are safe with us, that we will never ask them to run another day in their lives. They were promised a forever home, and promises are not meant to be broken.
So, I fully understand the excitement of Derby Day (I love the fancy over-the-top hats too!), but I also understand the harsh reality behind this sport.