Horses

Forums
Race Horses With the Longest Careers
 By Saferaphus   •   4th Jan 2017   •   476 views   •   1 comments


American Pharoah won the American Triple Crown in 2015, and at the end of the year his life as a race horse ended. As a four-year-old, his athletic career was over. In much of the horse world, four years old is just the beginning of a performance horseís career. So, why are racehorses retired so early, while other horses donít hit their stride until much later? Some horses arenít even started under saddle until they are five years old. Many dressage horses arenít considered fully developed until they are in the double digits. And many horses are competitive until late into their twenties. Why the difference?

Much of it has to do with money. If a horse like American Pharoah were to keep racing and winning it would no doubt earn an impressive collection of purses. However, as breeding stock, it would be worth much more. There is a lot of risk in racing. A minor injury can end a racing career, or a catastrophic injury could be life ending. Itís better to quit while youíre ahead and retire a horse while sound, popular and winning.

That doesnít mean that all racehorses end their careers end relatively early in life. I recall being in the backstretch at Woodbine Racetrack and hearing the exercise riders talking about a nine-year-old gelding that was still racing. He still brought home a few purses for his owners and continued to race for awhile after that. After a thirteen-year-old had a breakdown during a workout at that same track, many people there questioned if there was such a thing as too old for a racehorse. Others argued that similar breakdowns happen to horses much younger and that itís an unfortunate part of the game.

Just the same, there are horses out there that arenít superstars, donít have names that are familiar, but nevertheless, bring home enough money for their owners that they keep entering them in just one more race. One example is a horse named John Henry. This horse started running as a two-year-old and at age nine won six stakes races and earned the title of Horse of the Year. He was retired at age ten and his trainers tried for a comeback as a thirteen-year-old, but injuries ended his career for good. By the end of his career, the horse had earned over six million dollars and a second Horse of the Year award.

Racehorses over ten years old is more common than youíd think, especially if they are a gelding. Over the age of five, the bone injuries that can plague younger horses tend to disappear. Soft tissue injuries increase, however, requiring trainers to watch for things like arthritis and tendon strains. But, older horses know their jobs, so training is more about keeping them fit and sound. In fact, retirement may be harder on many of these older horses than a continued racing career. Used to the routine of track life and training these horses may be more difficult to put into retirement or retrain.

Retraining hasnít been a problem for the horse that holds the record for the oldest race horse. An Egyptian bred Arabian named Al Jabal had a very successful racing career, but was also used for endurance riding, dressage, and jumping. At age nineteen, this hardy athlete won a 6-furlong stakes race. Sadly, his life ended due to a training injury at the age of twenty-one.
Horse News More In This Category:  Shows and Events      Horse News More From This Author:  Saferaphus
Valkyrie  MOD online
Down here in New Zealand and Australia we usually have two types of racehorses - early runners, and stayers. Early runners are the 2yos and 3yos, they win the big Derbies and Oaks races and usually retire after their fourth year.

Then you have the stayers. They mature late so they aren't raced until they're four or five (sometimes as late 3yos they'll have a couple of starts). And they can run anywhere up to age seven or eight or nine. I've seen 5yos making their raceday debuts before, and the other day there was an 8yo mare making her debut.

Sometimes they go on to become jumpers and race into their teens. We don't over-race horses down here so raceday fatalities are usually just horrible accidents, not breakdowns.
  Jan 6, 2017  •  421 views
 More News by Saferaphus
Bad Horse Bedding and Floor Choices
23rd May 2017   |   Shows and Events   |   Saferaphus
There are a few things you donít want under your horse when itís standing in its stall. If youíre using wood shavings, you will want to be sure that the mix of wood doesnít include some types of trees. Black walnut shavings contai ...
The Horse Funnies
20th May 2017   |   Shows and Events   |   Saferaphus
I donít often buy a weekend paper anymore. But when I do, the first section I flip to are the funnies. I love the Peanuts, Family Circus and Shermanís Lagoon. I also like GoComics on my tablet. Horse magazines donít have a pull ou ...
Organizing My Tackroom
19th May 2017   |   Shows and Events   |   Saferaphus
Getting your tack room organized and keeping it organized can be a challenge, especially if like many of us you have a lot of Ďstuffí and only a small space to stash it in. We can dream about the perfectly appointed tack room, fil ...
Talented Artistic Horses
17th May 2017   |   Shows and Events   |   Saferaphus
An ex-racehorse named Metro has contributed to its own life-prolonging treatments by becoming a professional artist. After noticing the horse liked to nod its head, his owner decided to put the habit to use. He taught the horse to ...
How Horse Crazy Are You
13th May 2017   |   Shows and Events   |   Saferaphus
Are you horse crazy? How horse crazy: a little bit, or 100% obsessive? Some of like horses, while others canít imagine even thinking about anything but. Take this quiz and find out just how horse crazy you really are. ...
Types of Horse Tack Leather Explained
11th May 2017   |   Shows and Events   |   Saferaphus
I was flipping through a mail order tack catalog and noticed the wide range of prices for bridles, saddles and other gear made from leather. Comparing prices, you can buy leather tack for little more than the cost of synthetic tac ...
Equine Harmful Genetic Mutations
9th May 2017   |   Shows and Events   |   Saferaphus
Scientists have examined ancient horse DNA and discovered that horses were once much more genetically diverse than they are now. Domestication may have preserved horses from extinction, but the downside for the modern domestic hor ...
Benefits of Horseback Riding
8th May 2017   |   Shows and Events   |   Saferaphus
I recently read a story from a local newspaper about a girl who, after losing both legs in a car accident, took up riding again. Her parents were uncomfortable with the idea and still frightened each time she gets on her horse. Bu ...
  View All News by Saferaphus
 
Active News Discussions
Horse Racing Not Just for Thoroughbreds
1
comments
Horse Racing Not Just for Thoroughbreds
Horse Show Riders Dismounted Based on Weight
6
comments
Horse Show Riders Dismounted Based on Weight
April 20th 2013 Showjumping Competition With Bronze
3
comments
April 20th 2013 Showjumping Competition With Bronze
If Horses Were Feminists
12
comments
If Horses Were Feminists
Horse Show Riders Dismounted Based on Weight
6
comments
Horse Show Riders Dismounted Based on Weight
Horse Show Riders Dismounted Based on Weight
6
comments
Horse Show Riders Dismounted Based on Weight
How to Decorate Your Horse
2
comments
How to Decorate Your Horse
Top Twenty Reasons To Ride A Horse
6
comments
Top Twenty Reasons To Ride A Horse
Unicorn Lair Discovered in North Korea
8
comments
Unicorn Lair Discovered in North Korea
Escape - Attacked While Riding Alone
28
comments
Escape - Attacked While Riding Alone
 
©2002 - 2017   PonyBox LLC Create Account Terms & Conditions Privacy Contact Us
318 Members Online 236,642 Registered Members 2,283 News Articles 9,063,987 Unique News Article Views 194,774,417 Website Views