Lexington, KY. June 20, 2016 – In just five short months, Maker’s Mark Secretariat Center (MMSC) has prepared twenty-five retired thoroughbreds for their second careers and placed them into new homes. MMSC is a premier non-profit re-schooling facility for adoptable Thoroughbreds, located at the Kentucky Horse Park. They teach new skills to horses of all levels of abilities by utilizing the natural strength of the thoroughbred.
The American Thoroughbred once reigned supreme as the equine athlete of choice in equestrian sports, but lost is supremacy to warmbloods in the ‘80s. Yet all fashions tend to resurge, and thankfully once again the American Thoroughbred seems to be stepping out again in the show world. As a result, the demand and adoption rates for the thoroughbred breed have continued to increase.
“Thoroughbreds are smart, athletic, and very magnanimous,” says MMSC Director, Susanna Thomas. “They also are much less expensive than warmbloods. What has been lacking until now is a venue to show them off—but with the creation of the Jockey Club’s Thoroughbred Incentive Program, The Retired Racehorse Project, and multiple new Thoroughbred classes popping up at shows all over the country, the demand for competitive Thoroughbreds is going through the roof. Our job here at the MMSC is to find horses that can go on to be ambassadors for the breed and to give them a well planned head start so they can transition more easily to a new career.”
The Maker’s Mark Secretariat Center has a very specific system: The Horse Centered Reschooling Program℠ developed by Thomas that gives an off-track Thoroughbred a foundation that an amateur can successfully build upon. The Center also is careful to match each adopter with a horse with a compatible temperament that can fulfill the adopter’s chosen goals.
Rosalie Morton, the 24th adopter to get a horse from the MMSC, had this to say: “I grew up riding Thoroughbreds and it’s been such a shame watching their numbers dwindle in the hunter ring. I hope to see that change in the years to come through amazing programs like the one at the Secretariat Center. The MMSC has a great eye for selecting horses and for matching people with them, and the process there is so seamless. With a resource like the MMSC, there is no excuse not to think of Thoroughbreds first when you are looking for a hunter prospect.”
Dee’Anna Wright, the 25th adopter, was seeking a horse to do dressage, trail riding, and equine therapy. She was thrilled to find a versatile horse at the MMSC that met all of those qualifications. “The Maker’s Mark has amazing horses and a fantastic staff! They put the horse first every step of the way, including in their careful matching of each horse to the perfect adopter.“
It is because of this dedication to being “horse-centric” in all that they do, including their focus on successful matches, that the Maker’s Mark Secretariat Center has been hailed by equine professionals as “The Gold Standard in Thoroughbred Reschooling.”