Some of horse racing's biggest stars are stepping up to the plate to support New Vocations Racehorse Adoption Program by pledging a percentage of their purse earnings from the Breeders' Cup World Championships Nov. 2-3 at Santa Anita Park.
For the fourth consecutive year, New Vocations Racehorse Adoption Program is working with trainers and owners of Breeders' Cup contenders to pledge a percentage of their earnings to support the program's mission to rehabilitate, retrain, and re-home retired race horses. In the past three years the pledges have raised more than $150,000.
So far, 39 championship contenders have owners and or trainers supporting this year's pledge. Trainers that have committed include Chad Brown, Kiaran McLaughlin, Doug O'Neill, Todd Pletcher, and Eddie Plesa. Owners who have pledged include Eclipse Thoroughbred Partners who will send out In Lingerie, Tara From the Cape, and Capo Bastone ; Donegal Racing with Duhallan; Padua Stables and Richard Santulli with Dust and Diamonds; Off the Hook with Turbo Compressor ; Starlight Racing with Shanghai Bobby ; Zayat Stables with Justin Phillip , Jaycito, and Fast Bullet; Sisters in Racing with Romp; James Covello with Oscar Party; West Point Thoroughbreds with Belle of the Hall; and Bradley Thoroughbreds with Watsdachances.
"We're happy to be supporting New Vocations at this year's World Championships," said Pletcher, a long-time Thoroughbred retirement advocate and supporter of New Vocations. "It's important as trainers and owners that we make sure that our equine athletes are taken care of and looked out for beyond their racing careers."
New Vocations will continue to seek pledges from additional owners and trainers leading up to the November event.
"It's the responsibility of everyone who has a stake in the game to support the organizations that take care of the horses in their years beyond racing," said Jack Wolf, managing partner of Starlight Racing and president of the Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance. "New Vocations' program to rehab, retrain, and re-home former race horses is one of the best in the industry and we are happy to support them at this year's Breeders' Cup."
In 1992 New Vocations first opened its barn doors to retired race horses looking for new careers. Starting with a single farm in Dayton, Ohio the program has grown to six facilities in Tennessee, Kentucky, Ohio, Michigan, and Pennsylvania. Serving more than 40 racetracks, New Vocations works directly with owners and trainers in need of an aftercare program for horses leaving the track.
"We feel very blessed to receive so much support from the owners and trainers participating in this year's campaign," said New Vocations Program director, Anna Ford in a release. "Like last year we are on track to adopt more than 400 retired racehorses into homes by the end of December. The number of horses needing our services is huge and the funds raised from the pledges will help us continue to grow. It is fairly simple, the more money we raise the more horses we can take."