OTTB Showcase: Tall Glass (Show Name: “Admit Nothing”; Barn Name: “Kadin”)
Name: Tall Glass
Born: May 15, 2001
Height: 16 hands
Sire: Canyon Creek
Dam: Tensia, by Marquetry
Sale History: None
Race Record: 8-0-0-0
Race Earnings: $2,322
One could say that 11-year-old Tall Glass “competed” on the Ontario racing circuit, but I’m not sure many would have used the term “competitive” to describe him. Tall Glass’s career started in June of 2005, when he made his career debut at Woodbine in a Maiden Claiming event for a $16,000 tag. Unfortunately, he finished 11th of 11 horses and that day pretty much set the tone for his one year career, in which he made eight starts and failed to hit the board in all of them.
The writing was on the wall – Tall Glass was not going to be a profitable runner, so owner/breeder Larry Regan retired the horse to his farm and asked the Ontario-based LongRun Thoroughbred Retirement Society to help the horse find a new and more successful career path.
“Tall Glass was donated to LongRun by his owner a month after his first start,” said Vicki Pappas, Chairperson for LongRun Thoroughbred Retirement Society. “Mr. Regan has donated a number of horses to us in the past and has generally kept them at his farm at his expense until we are able to place them, which is a huge help to any rehoming program.”
Within a month, Tall Glass was adopted out into what was meant to be his forever home, but within six months, an unfortunate change in circumstances forced his then-adopter to return him to LongRun. For two years he remained in foster care at LongRun until January of 2008, when he met his current owner and was adopted out into his forever home.
Edie Urbansik adopted Tall Glass, who she nicknamed “Kadin,” in January of 2008 and, while she was an experienced equestrian, her new adoptee proved to be a more challenging project than she anticipated.
“He’s barely 16 hands, but he’s ripped and muscular and he carries himself much larger than he actually is,” said Edie. “When I adopted Kadin four years ago, I hoped he would eventually be a hunter for my then-seven-year-old daughter, which I thought his quiet nature would eventually lend itself to. After a few months of fitting and fattening him up, he turned out to be a lot of horse, with guts and prowess far beyond my expectations.”
Not only that, but Kadin showed a rebellious streak, and quite a lengthy one at that. He was excitable and high strung – pretty much the polar opposite of what judges look for in the hunter ring and definitely not the type of horse you want to leg your seven-year-old up on.
“He was a lot of horse, so I found a rider who brought him along as a jumper,” said Edie. “He was fiery and quick – not very hunter-like, so show jumping seemed like a fit.”
After three years of training and competing as a jumper, Kadin found himself without a rider in early 2012, and Edie decided it was time for her to start riding her own horse. What she found when she got back in the saddle, however, was much different than her first experience with Kadin. Her OTTB had grown up.
“My fiery OTTB had become quiet, relaxed and happy. He had become ‘hunter-like,’ recalled Edie. “He made my heart smile.”
As luck (or bad luck) would have it, not long after Edie and Kadin’s reunion, Edie and her daughter, Kayla, got bad news. Kayla’s show horse was injured and would miss at least half of the 2012 show season.
“I think everyone has ‘that’ day of reckoning…a culmination of events that lead up to one moment, and when you look back, you realize that everything leading up to that moment was worth it,” said Edie. “That moment for me was an evening in May, getting Kadin ready for his first show with Kayla.”
Edia, playing the role of proud mom to both Kayla and to Kadin, watched as the pair placed fifth at their first class together at Kadin’s first hunter show ever!
“Kadin loves his new life,” said Edie. “We recently found another little rider to share him. Three-year-old Piper takes lunge lessons on him once a week, and the cute pair is currently on a two-show blue ribbon-winning streak in their leadline division and is going for a third this Sunday. She leads him, brushes him, gives him treats, and is forever hugging his legs, since that’s really the only part of him she can reach.”
While the plan Edie had for Kadin when she adopted him didn’t exactly work out the way she’d had in mind, the reality of the situation is one she couldn’t have scripted more perfectly.
“I’ve always embraced the saying that ‘the only constant is change,’ but it has never been as poignant for me as it has been in 2012,” said Edie. “I’m so thankful for the amazing friends who helped us get here. Kadin may never do all the things I had planned for him , but no one will ever love him the way I do, and that’s far more important than the rest of it will ever be.”
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 (Jenlroytz@gmail.com) with the horse’s Jockey Club name, background story, and a few photos.
Jen Roytz is the marketing and communications director at Three Chimneys Farm in Midway, Kentucky. She also handles the farm’s Thoroughbred aftercare efforts. She currently owns two retired Thoroughbreds: Point of Impact (by Point Given; a.k.a. Boomer), who retired from racing in late 2011 and is just starting back under saddle to find his forte as a riding horse, and Shotgun Shine (by Tale of the Cat, a.k.a. Gage), who is in training as a hunter/jumper. Contact Jen on Facebook and Twitter.