The Retired Racehorse Project (RRP) has announced the schedule of meetings the organization hopes will help identify both the strengths and the challenges of existing programs that transition Thoroughbred racehorses into careers after racing.
The “Bridges to Second Careers Roundtables” will take place Oct. 27 and 28 at the Kentucky Horse Park, in Lexington, during the Thoroughbred Makeover and National Symposium Presented by Thoroughbred Charities of America (TCA).
In 2014 the RRP published results of a survey in which 2,700 owners identified the means by which they acquired 4,200 off-track Thoroughbreds that became their riding partners. It showed that owners acquired horses through a variety of channels, including direct sales from racing owners, private resellers, nonprofit aftercare facilities, and others. A 2016 analysis of how the first 400 Thoroughbred Makeover trainers acquired horses eligible to compete in this year’s event confirmed that bridges to second careers are thriving and diverse.
The RRP hopes the Bridges to Second Career Roundtables will provide a voice to the people who do this work. Each roundtable will identify the strengths of its models, challenges to growth, and recommendations for future collaboration and expansion. Recommendations from each roundtable will be presented during the Thoroughbred Makeover Finale on Saturday afternoon in the TCA Covered Arena.
Sue Smith, RRP board member, will serve as convener of these roundtables and author a report on the findings. In addition to her position on the board of RRP, Smith serves as Executive Director of CANTER Pennsylvania, is on the boards of Thorou