Weekly OTTB Wishlist from Cosequin: Virtual Races from Kentucky to Aiken

Well, the Kentucky Derby was supposed to be this Saturday. While the real race has been postponed to September 5th, don’t worry, there’s still going to be plenty to do this weekend as Churchill Downs has a full day of online activities planned (like DIY fascinator and Derby cocktail making — yes please!) NBC will also be broadcasting all of American Pharoah’s 2015 Triple Crown Run plus a virtual race of previous Triple Crown winners using historical handicapping information and data algorithms to determine the winner. Honestly, that actually sounds pretty cool! Learn more about #KyDerbyatHome here.

The Derby actually isn’t the only virtual race happening this Saturday, so to speak. There may not be any data or computer-simulation involved in this one, but the Aiken Steeplechase is encouraging the community to gather virtually in their own backyards for what would have been their annual spring race.

The Aiken Virtual Steeplechase has a whole host of contests to participate in including a photo contest for stick horse steeplechase, best “home-gate” tailgating setup, and fashion contests. Local businesses are in on the fun as well by sponsoring the event and offering prizes, and local restaurants are offering take-out specials to take your home party to the next level.

We may all have to be physically apart right now, but the innovative ways people are coming together from a distance is pretty inspiring. And we’d be remiss not to mention what brings us all together for these events in the first place: the Thoroughbred racehorse! Here are three race retirees ready to come home with you this week:

Union Cat. Photo via Second Stride Inc.

Union Cat (NOTIONAL – SOUTHERN TAPESTRY, BY SOUTHERN HALO): 2014 16.0-hand Kentucky-bred gelding

Union Cat last raced in October 2019 and ran a total of six times, winning one race. Since arriving at Second Stride, Union Cat has been ridden in both English and Western tack. He’s also been cleared by the vet and is thought to be suitable for any discipline. Union Cat has a super cute expression under saddle and looks like like he could have some really cute movement too!

Located in Prospect, Kentucky.

View Union Cat on Second Stride Inc.

Caramel Moon. Photo via New Vocations Racehorse Adoption.

Caramel Moon (FIRST SAMURAI – MOONNATIVE, BY GRAND SLAM): 2014 15.2-hand Florida-bred mare

Caramel Moon could be the one to jump the moon for you! While she can be a little bit of a typical sensitive redhead, when it comes time to work “Cara” is all business and more than ready to get going. She’s smart and focused while under-saddle and is very brave over the cross rails she’s been started over and while hacking out alone. The New Vocations staff can see her excelling as an eventer or jumper!

Located in Lexington, Kentucky.

View Caramel Moon on New Vocations Racehorse Adoption.

Ready to Fire. Photo via Retired Racehorse Project Horse Listings.

Ready to Fire (BOBALICIOUS – SWEET SAFARI, BY JOHANNESBURG): 2014 15.3-hand West Virginia-bred gelding

This sweet gelding has been a rehab project for his current owners after coming off the track in November 2018. He spent his first 6 months off the track totally resting and has since been restarted slowly under saddle. “Nicolas” has been doing great as he’s been brought along and has been enjoying time on the trails as well as popping over fences and logs.

Located in Poolesville, Maryland.

View Ready to Fire on the Retired Racehorse Project Horse Listings.