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How To Name A Racehorse
 By Polo the Weirdo   •   31st Mar 2017   •   965 views   •   0 comments
Following the recent scandal of President Trump’s name being changed to Fake News after the horse received just a little too much attention from the press (which offended some people), it seems like a good time to consider just exactly what it takes to create a good racehorse name. Or, rather, a horribly genius one. Here are some of the things you’re not allowed to use in a name for your racehorse, according to the Jockey Club rule book.



1. Names with more than 18 characters. This is why Twitter has a character limit. I finally understand. It’s there to prepare you for your future in racehorse-naming.

2. Names consisting of initials. No, your colt can’t race under the name ‘YMCA’, no matter how fun it would be to cheer for him.

3. Names ending in a horse-related term (like mare, stallion, etc). Well, I guess I’ll never own a racehorse called “The Black Stallion” now. Childhood dream = crushed.

4. Names consisting entirely of numbers. Your horse name can’t be the same as your ATM pin, no matter what a great idea that seems like.

5. Names of real living people. Don’t think you can apologise to your wife by naming a racehorse after her – well, unless you can get written permission, then it’s okay, but if President Trump is any indication, it seems that people don’t exactly love having horses named after them. Especially when those horses end up being described, well, unaffectionately.

6. Commercial names. No using your horse as an advertisement. We all know that Coke is better than Pepsi without having to see a horse called “Coke is Better”.

7. Names that are suggestive, vulgar, offensive, or generally in poor taste. Vulgar. Offensive. Poor taste. Yes, these describe President Trump. It all makes sense now. No wonder his name had to change.

8. Names designed to humiliate or harass somebody. Well, there goes my plan to get back at my childhood bullies! Looks like “Rachel Stinks” needs a new name.

9. Names of currently active horses, or famous past horses. No confusing the announcer by racing 16 Nicolas Cages against each other. We’ve all seen quite enough of that.

10. Names that sound like any of the above disallowed names. For example, “Ivanna Tinkle” is not an appropriate name for a horse, no matter how subtle you think you are being regarding your extremely public announcement about your full bladder. The Jockey Club knows about all of your phonetic trickery. You have no power here.

11. Names of horses in the first 5 generations of the horse’s pedigree. No. You can’t name your grandson of Secretariat, “Secretariat Junior”, no matter how proud you are of his breeding.

These are just some of the many rules to remember when trying to name your racehorse, and even with so many rules in place, owners and trainers are constantly finding new ways of fitting their horse with a name that can give people a gasp and a chuckle. Despite the restrictions, the Jockey Club is still up for a joke, allowing quite a few cheeky, tongue-in-cheek horse names. Those deemed too crude or problematic will ultimately be rejected to protect the integrity of the sport, but there will always be cases where humour is worth more than integrity.

Knowing these rules and restrictions, what would you name your racehorse? If you wanted to bend the rules for your name, how would you try to do it? After all, we all know that the racing industry could definitely use a laugh now and then. It’s got to take a sting out of watching your million dollar yearling lose to a Shetland Pony if you get to laugh through your sobs every time the announcer says his name. It is a shame that we’ll never get to laugh at the prospect of President Trump winning a race, but more scandalous and controversial racehorse names are always sure to follow. Keep your wit sharp and your eyes open, and you’re sure to see a few.
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