Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Bouncing Baby Budweiser Clydesdales

 By Kitson

Photos courtesy of Budweiser / Warm Springs Ranch

There’s a baby boom in BoonvilleMissouri going on, and the babies are gigantic, adorable, white nosed Clydesdales, of the Budweiser variety. Boonville is home to the lovely Warm Springs Ranch, the state-of-the-art breeding facility in mid-Missouri for the Budweiser Clydesdales. About half of the 200-head Budweiser herd lives at Warm Springs. The facility opens for public tours starting this Saturday. Right now the farm is at the height of foaling season, with more than 30 baby Clydesdales expected to be born this year.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Allie Conrad: "Can Veterinarians Improve The State Of Thoroughbred Racing?"

By Eliza

Allie Conrad is the executive director of CANTER Mid-Atlantic, which finds homes for ex-racehorses. I interviewed her for a book called Second Chance Horses a few years ago, and enjoyed meeting her. She is blogging for the Chronicle of the Horse, and has posted a piece here about how the "elephant in the room" concerning racehorse breakdowns is veterinarians. "The veterinarians are put into a situation where they are endangering horses, people and, of course, their employment status. If they don’t do it, the next vet will. Horses then go out and run and further injure the joint, leaving them crippled for life if they are lucky, dead if they are not," she writes. It's another point to consider in the unfolding current discussion about racing.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

"Mangled Horses, Maimed Jockeys" and Black Gold

By Eliza

I have just finished reading the article in this morning's New York Times about racehorse breakdowns, "Mangled Horses, Maimed Jockeys," by Walt Bogdanich, Joe Drape, Dara L. Miles, and Griffin Palmer. It is a difficult--Jakob Schiller's haunting photograph of a dead horse, dumped after he broke down, sets the tone--and very worthwhile read for those of us who are fans of the greatest game.

Friday, March 23, 2012

There Are No Horses in the Hunger Games

By Kitson

When I flip through one of my husband's golf magazines, I play a little game: how many pages until I can find a horse? There's always a horse, usually some resort-style glamour shot of a woman riding while her husband is off... golfing. It's the same when I go to the movies. How long do I have to wait before the horse scene? I'm always looking for a flick of a tail or listening for the pounding of hooves when I go to the movies.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Colin's Ghost

You have already seen the blog name "Colin's Ghost" on the "Horse Links We Like" list here at, but here's one more reason to like it: Kevin kindly refers to my most recent Raceday360 article. In the same post, he refers to the article I would like everyone to read as well: a brilliant historical piece about racing writer Charles Hatton by Ryan Goldberg at Daily Racing Form.

Colin's Ghost here. (To find out what the evocative name means, go to the site.) And the Goldberg piece here.

Monday, March 19, 2012

HBO will buy the horses from cancelled show, "Luck"

Did you wonder what would happen to all the horse actors now that HBO has cancelled "Luck"? Evidently, HBO will buy them. This is leading to me conjuring up images of horses wandering around sets, wondering if they will be cast as chariot pullers or cowboy mounts, depending upon the topic of HBO's next drama. . .

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Irish Horses From the World Equestrian Games

By Kitson

For me, hardly anything in the last 18 months has topped the thrill of going to the World Equestrian Games in 2010. Road trip to Kentucky with a press pass and a good friend -- it felt like a once in a lifetime. With Saint Patty's day approaching, I have been thinking back on some of the incredible Irish horses I saw exhibited in the Equine Village at the WEG. Here are a few I found in my photo files, straight from the Kentucky Horse Park:

HBO's "Luck" cancelled

By Eliza

There are so many ways to come at the story of HBO's racing drama, "Luck," being cancelled. It has been billed as an issue of humane treatment of the horses, three of which have died during filming. But there may be more to it than that. This is Andrew Cohen's take in The Atlantic, and it's one of the best pieces I've read on the topic (and I have read a lot of them.) His best quote, about what HBO officials must have been thinking: "No Luck, they reckoned, is better than bad luck." Here's his post.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

iPad now for horses

By Eliza

This is goofy.

I liked it. Click here for the "iPad now for horses" ad.

Merrick Post Up on Raceday 360

By Eliza

Head on over to for my latest Outrider column. This one is on Merrick, who was the oldest living Thoroughbred at one point. Learn about old Merrick and his devoted owner, Cal Milam, here.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Anne Romney's Horses

By Eliza

The Washington Post features an article today about Anne Romney's dressage horses. (The piece touches on some good horse world drama. . .without which no barn is complete.) Click here to read.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

For the Love of Irish Horses

By Kitson

Silver Galtee, an imported 1996 Irish Draught Sport Horse who competes in dressage, eventing, and hunter/jumpers. 

With Saint Patrick’s Day just a week, away, I thought it was time to share a little Irish green on So in honor of the Emerald Isle, leprechauns, four-leaf clover and a country that gives horses the right of way on the road, we’ll feature a beautiful Irish horse or two or three this week.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Cowboy Magic: Guy McLean

By Kitson

Photo courtesy of Guy McLean
This weekend show-stopping Australian rider Guy McLean heads to Murfreesboro, TN where he’ll compete with other top horsemen and women at the Road to the Horse 2012 International, a wild colt-starting competition. I’d love to be in Tennessee to see this. After seeing Guy at the World Equestrian Games in 2010 and then last October at the Washington International, it’s confirmed: Guy and his Aussie stock horses put on a great show!

How Are All The Horses Getting to the Olympics?

By plane, of course! NPR investigates. Click here.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

New book! Bubba To The Rescue, by Jennifer Walker

By Eliza

Bubba To The Rescue is the second book in Jennifer Walker's Green Meadow Series, which kicked off with Bubba Goes National, the story of a teenager named Leslie and her horse, Lucky. (Bubba is the goofy nickname that Leslie's father gives Lucky.) Here, in the time-honored way of books like Black Beauty and The Black Stallion and Satan, a barn fire sets in motion a sequence of events from which the affected horse people must grapple.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Certified Journeyman Farrier exam

In exciting news today, my horse Sugar's (see image at left) farrier passed the American Farriers Association Certified Journeyman written exam with 95%. Becoming a CJF means recognition for the highest level of accomplishment the AFA offers. Huge honor--and symbol of lots of hard work--that not very many shoers achieve. Congratulations to the talented Michael O'Brien and check out his work at his evocatively named website:

Saturday, March 3, 2012

A Horse Of A Different Color

. . .and I am far from the only person using that phrase. But this is a fun story to follow: the almost white racehorse, Hansen, whose owner wanted to dye his mane and tail blue before a big race. Racing authorities said it would be too undignified. . .what do you think? Click here.