Cosequin Presents OTTB Showcase: Every Chance To Find A Home - Horse Racing News | Paulick Report

Cosequin Presents OTTB Showcase: Every Chance To Find A Home

Centralinteligence seen winning the 2013 G1 Triple Bend Handicap at Hollywood Park

In the middle of horse country in Central Kentucky is a paddock like so many others. It has four board fence, green grass, and a pair of horses enjoying the late summer sunshine… but there's one major difference.

The geldings lazily grazing together have garnered quite a few bucks in their day. One is Centralinteligence, a Grade 1-winning son of Smarty Jones who earned over $300,000 on the racetrack. He recently arrived in Kentucky from California after officially retiring from racing earlier this year. The other is One Point Three, an unraced son of Malibu Moon who sold at the 2014 OBS March Sale of Two-Year-Olds in Training for $1.3 million, the sale's third-highest price. But after repeated attempts at a racing career, One Point Three was retired this summer.

Both arrived earlier this month and are gearing down from the track in preparation for second careers as riding horses at Craig and Carrie Brogden's Machmer Hall Farm.

Winner of the Grade 1 Triple Bend Handicap, Centralinteligence raced for Amerman Racing Stables, Bongo Racing Stable, and Gary Finder. He was last seen on the racetrack in the 2013 Breeders' Cup Dirt Sprint at Santa Anita. The gelding pulled up midway through the race with an injury to his ankle and was vanned off.

“First he injured himself in the Dirt Mile, then he hurt himself in his stall,” explained Bob Feld, bloodstock consultant for the Amermans. “He worked three-quarters [of a mile] and came out of it not quite right. We could have injected it, but if he wasn't going to stay sound to race on straight hay, oats and water, it was time to find something else for him to do.”

One Point Three is a different story entirely. Out of proven producer Layreebelle, a mare named by the Brogdens after their three children, Layne, Reece and Isabelle, the gelding was sold by the family's Select Sales Agency for $200,000, then went on to bring his $1.3 million price tag the following year. Here's the link to his 2YO sale video.

Purchased by Demi O'Byrne on behalf of Coolmore, the horse had inherited his parents' good looks, athleticism and drive. Unfortunately for his new owners, he also inherited their bad luck with racing soundness.

Known today as a world-class sire with royal bloodlines, Malibu Moon showed a flash of brilliance on the track, breaking his maiden at second asking. Then he suffered an injury that ended the racing career he'd barely just begun.

It was a different set of circumstances with the same end result for Layreebelle.

“When Layreebelle was a foal, she was kicked in the shoulder and was hurt badly enough that she would never be able to race,” said Carrie Brogden. “Everyone told me that One Point Three was amazing and incredible in every way, and the mare had already produced two Grade 2 winners in Kid Cruze and Spellbound. Layrebelle's progeny were just so sound, but One Point Three came up with a suspensory and they could just never get him to the races. He's the only horse out of that mare not to make it to the track.”

Carrie's friend, Aisling Cross, director of bloodstock at Ashford Stud, Coolmore's American division, knew how much the Brogdens liked the horse, and how much the mare meant to the family. When the farm decided to call it quits on One Point Three's racing career, Carrie was the first one they called to see if she was interested in him.

One Point Three sold for $1.3 million at OBS March but never made it to the races
One Point Three sold for $1.3 million at OBS March but never made it to the races

“I do a lot of business with Ashford, and Aisling's and my daughters are close. We have a good relationship, both professionally and personally. I am glad I can take him off of their hands and give him a good home. They shipped him all the way back to Kentucky from California, had his feet trimmed, and dropped him off at my farm,” said Carrie.

For Carrie, this isn't her first go-round with rehabilitating and repurposing horses off the track. With a background in showing hunter/jumpers, she has taken quite a few horses from the racetrack to the show ring.

“Growing up in the show world, I am very comfortable around that scene,” said Carrie. “One of the biggest parts of rehoming these horses in the right spot is creating a bridge between racing and the greater horse industry in general.”

Carrie has countless success stories. Horses that went onto careers as eventers, jumpers, field hunters, trail horses and more all came through the Brogden's green grass spa.

“We have a 100 percent return policy. If they don't work out, whether it's due to injuries, being too hot, or just not being the right fit, they come back. We rehomed a horse as a fox hunter a few years back. He was way too hot, so we shipped him back to our farm here in Kentucky and rehomed him as a barrel racer. Now, he's killing it at rodeos!” said Carrie.

As for Centralinteligence and One Point Three, the two have become fast friends. They are turned out together and enjoying some down time. With the Keeneland September Sale just days away, Machmer Hall is buzzing with activity, putting the final touches on the horses getting ready to ship to Keeneland to sell and preparing to welcome new purchases to the farm.

“We'll just let them relax for now, and after the September Sale when things slow down, we'll really see what we've got with them,” said Carrie.

The plan is to start them back under saddle and see how they move, how they act, and what they enjoy. If they show a propensity for being a show horse, Carrie's sister, Kristy Willwerth, is also an avid horsewoman, operating Picturesque Farm, a hunter/jumper training and show facility in Warrenton, Va. She often takes on retired racehorses from Machmer Hall and transitions them to hunter/jumpers.

“We considered sending Centralinteligence to Old Friends Farm, but we've retired and rehomed a lot of horses and we really felt he would enjoy having a job. He has a lot more left in him,” said Bob Feld.

While Bob and Carrie have been fortunate to be connected to a number of great horses throughout their careers, they are very clear about one thing: Whether the horse is a Grade 1 winner or not makes no difference. Every racehorse deserves a proper retirement, whether that's a second career or life as a pasture potato. It is something both are very vocal about, and that their clients admire.

“I am such a fan of these two horses. If you could see what they've seen through their eyes…it's incredible,” said Carrie. “What they've accomplished is mesmerizing. Whether they go on to do great things off of the track or not, they will always have a home here at Machmer Hall.”

The Deets:
Born: March 5, 2008
Color: Chestnut
Sire: Smarty Jones
Dam: Shootforthestars
Sale History: Sold as a yearling at KEESEP in 2009 for $90,000
Race Record: 14-4-3-1
Race Earnings: $309,171

Born: 2012
Color: Bay
Sire: Malibu Moon
Dam: Layreebelle
Sale History: Sold as a yearling in 2013 at KEESEP for $200,000; sold as a 2YO at OBSMAR for $1,300,000
Race Record: 0-0-0-0
Race Earnings: None

If you have or know of a retired Thoroughbred with an interesting story to tell, we'd love to hear about it! Just email Jen Roytz ([email protected]) with the horse's Jockey Club name, background story, and a few photos.

Jen Roytz is a freelance writer and marketing and public relations consultant for various entities, both equine and non-equine. She can also still be found on the back of an OTTB most days.

Contact Jen on Facebook and Twitter.

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