Sally Spickard entertains the idea of taking 5 superstar racehorses for a gallop down a different career path.
Racehorses are among the finest equine specimens there are. Elitely bred and groomed to perfection, these horses are always sparking my curiosity about their potential as a sporthorse. We’ve all seen Zenyatta’s dance moves – can you imagine how those would translate into the dressage ring? What about Afleet Alex’s pure grit and heart? I sure would love to see that on display while storming around a big cross-country course.
Without further ado, here is my list of the five racehorses I’d love to convert over to a different discipline, you know, if I had unlimited funds and the talent to ride them. Wishful thinking? Ok, maybe. But it’s fun to dream!
Ah, the dancing queen. I think I’ve watched the highlight reel showcasing her smooth moves about 500 times, and don’t forget about watching her dominate almost every horse she ever met on the racetrack; talk about competitive! I’d love to see how well those fancy prance moves would transition into the dressage arena – Valegro, you’ve met your match! Better yet, can you imagine a Totilas-Zenyatta super baby? Watch out, world.
2. Afleet Alex
One of my favorite racing moments has to be the 2005 Preakness Stakes in which Afleet Alex nearly fell turning for home. It is miraculous enough that the bay colt was able to get up before he went down and was trampled, but he also went on to win the whole damn thing. Heart? Yeah, I think he’s got it. Any horse that can grit its teeth and dig in to even come close to the win in that situation deserves a medal. Afleet Alex deserves a spot in the Heart Hall of Fame, if you ask me.
This horse belongs on any superlative list of racehorses without any doubt. “Big Red” boasted a stride angle of 110 degrees, which is practically unheard of in the history books. Again I return to the event world – that horse would literally eat up a cross country course and likely have no issues getting the time. Throw in the fact that his heart was about three times larger than a typical Thoroughbred and I think you’ve got a super horse in whatever sport you choose.
4. California Chrome
While he is likely too racing fit to really identify any jaw dropping dressage movement, with the dominating style he has shown on the racetrack, it’s a safe assumption that this horse is a true competitor in every sense of the word. While we don’t know how any of these horses would take to jumping, I would place my bets on this one to transition into the jumping world quite easily.
5. Rock Hard Ten
This horse gets a nod on my list simply for pure looks. I know that there are a couple of Rock Hard Ten offspring floating around the eventing world, and we definitely know where they get their good looks from. Looks aside though (as we all know that pretty only goes so far), this horse was a true performer on the racetrack and showed a lot of competitive potential throughout his career.
What racehorses would you add to our list? Comment below and let us know your thoughts!