Life After Racing to be celebrated at Jewels

This Saturday’s IRT Harness Jewels day will not only highlight current stars on the track, but will also highlight the Standardbred as a versatile breed and life after racing.

Prior to the first race of the day a special presentation will take place in the birdcage where two win trotting mare, Borntobeastar, will be presented to her new owner and begin her life after racing as a riding and show horse.

Owned by Westview Racing and the Witches of Westview syndicate, syndicate manager Nigel Armstrong and the owners of Borntobeastar were keen to ensure their mare enjoyed a productive life after her racing career was over.

“We were really keen to ensure our horses are looked after following their racing career,” said Nigel. “When I asked around both of our syndicates to get their feedback about the idea there was an overwhelming amount of support. We are thrilled to be able to do it at Addington, with a large group of owners there on such a huge day too.”

They then asked for the help of local Standardbred rehomer Jackie Law to assist in the process, and Star was then broken to saddle and assessed for suitable options and riders for her next stage of her career.

Despite a hesitant start to her riding career, Star soon got the hang of things and has developed well under Jackie’s guidance.

“She was a little bit precious at first,” explained Jackie. “But I just kept reassuring her and she has blossomed into a very kind and willing wee mare.”

It was then that 16 year-old Hayley Rossiter came to the group’s attention, as she was searching for a suitable horse to continue her show career with and progress forward.

Star fit the bill and the two are well suited together. So Hayley will be present in the birdcage on Saturday to ‘take the reins’ with Star and begin their new journey.

The presentation will also feature members of the Westview and Witches Syndicates who will be on course to watch their pride and joy Spellbound compete in the Terror To Love 2YO Diamond on IRT Harness Jewels Day.

Also as a further salute to the Standardbred, and the wonderful job they do in their follow on careers after racing, Addington Raceway will be providing a horse and carriage on the day to escort winning owners on a lap of the track.

This carriage will be driven by husband and wife duo, Bevan Heron and Kaylene McCormick. Bevan is well known for his association with the likes of Nigel Craig, William Dee, Idle Pride and Uncas to name a few. Whilst Kaylene was the third female licence holder as a driver in New Zealand harness racing.

The horse drawing the carriage is Mink De Vil, a 20-year-old Standardbred gelding who had a short racing career, before becoming a riding horse.

A trustworthy and reliable character, he is now a carriage horse for Rosemount Weddings and takes part in ceremonies all over Canterbury.

Both Addington Raceway and Harness Racing New Zealand are thrilled to be able to showcase the life after racing journey as a part of such a prestigious race day.

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