lead pony

Headley Remembers ‘Honest Race Horse’ Kona Gold

Bruce Headley was born on Feb. 17, 1934, 10 months before Santa Anita opened on Christmas Day, 1934. More than eight decades later, both are still kicking. Headley, best remembered as the trainer of Kona Gold, for whom next Saturday’s Grade II, $200,000 sprint at 6 ½ furlongs is named, is still a fixture at […]

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‘Coach’ Lava Man Turns 18, Still ‘An Important Part Of Team O’Neill’

Lava Man turned 18 on January 1. One of the most profitable claims in racing history, the old gelding has earned his keep as a pony since 2010, escorting the likes of 2012 Kentucky Derby winner I’ll Have Another to and from the track to exercise for trainer Doug O’Neill. Lava Man still ushers four […]

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Breeders’ Cup Oddity: Man Arrested For Trying To Ride Horse Onto Track At Churchill

One of the strangest stories to come out of the weekend’s Breeders’ Cup World Championships at Churchill Downs was that of Georgetown man Michael Wells-Rody’s Saturday adventure. According to the Lexington Herald-Leader, the 24-year-old’s arrest citation stated that he “was manifestly under the influence of alcoholic beverages” when he “snuck into a restricted area he was not authorized […]

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‘Contrary To Ordinary’: From Lead Pony To Racehorse And Back Again

Everyone knows that some Thoroughbreds require a little “beyond the ordinary” treatment to get make it to the races. For trainer Dan Pish, it was the colt Contrarytoordinary at Lone Star Park in 2016. “I named him this because the first time I took him out of the round pen he bolted and bucked with […]

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Doyle Adopts Her First North American Winner To Re-School As Lead Pony

Three years after scoring a milestone victory aboard Jaz N Tap, jockey Sophie Doyle is back on track with the 6-year-old-gelding. The two first became acquainted when Doyle was establishing her riding career in Kentucky after being a successful jockey in her native England. On Nov. 26, 2014, at Churchill Downs, she rode Jaz N […]

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Baffert Assistant Jimmy Barnes Suffers Fractured Pelvis In ‘Freaky’ Training Incident

Long a top assistant to Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert, Jimmy Barnes can usually be seen accompanying his equine charges across the world on a lead pony. On Sunday, according to drf.com, the pony 58-year-old Barnes was riding stumbled and unseated him. Barnes was transported to the hospital and diagnosed with a fractured pelvis. How […]

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Tinys First Pepsi: Champion Quarter Horse Now A Stable Pony At Indiana Grand

Most trainers are faced with a decision about a horse’s future at some point in their career. That day arrived for Indiana Grand based-trainer Ron Brown earlier this summer. Tinys First Pepsi has been part of the Brown Stable since his 2-year-old season, and the now 7-year-old Quarter Horse still had the desire to race. […]

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Lead Pony 101 Presented By Nupafeed: Learning To Lead

Last week the Paulick Report introduced a bay Thoroughbred gelding named “Trajan,” observing the process as the 4-year-old began his transition from a racing career to that of a lead pony. Trey immediately proved his disposition and sensibility make him an ideal candidate for the job, and the kind-eyed youngster picked up on his early […]

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In Memoriam: A Cowboy’s Ride

He spent his life in the background, a subtle supporting act for the grand display. Plain in color and not particularly flashy, the older gelding never complained about his job, marching to work each afternoon with the same efficient stride. It didn’t matter if the day was insufferably hot, freezing cold, or even pouring down […]

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