Thoroughbred Makeover announces schedule, ticket sales

Posted: July 19, 2017

The Retired Racehorse Project July 18 announced that ticket sales for this year’s $100,000 Thoroughbred Makeover and National Symposium Presented by Thoroughbred Charities of America are now available.

The event will be held Oct. 5-8 at the Kentucky Horse Park and involves 578 trainers working with Thoroughbred ex-racehorses that will have received less than 10 months of retraining. They will travel from 46 states and three countries, all hoping to be crowned America’s Most Wanted Thoroughbred.

Competition in Barrel Racing, Competitive Trails, Dressage, Eventing, Field Hunter, Freestyle, Polo, Show Hunter, Show Jumper, and Working Ranch will take place Oct. 5-6 in arenas and outside courses throughout the horse park. Seminars and more than 80 vendors will be located in the Covered Arena on those days as well.

Thursday and Friday activities are free and open to the public.

On Oct. 7 the top five scorers from each of the 10 disciplines will compete in the Covered Arena finale. The event lasts all day and into the evening with celebrity announcers, a jumbotron on the main stage, selection of fan-favorite America’s Most Wanted Thoroughbred, and an evening celebration with live music by Shades of Grass and dinner by Red State Barbecue.

Tickets for the Saturday Thoroughbred Makeover Finale and celebration can be purchased through the Retired Racehorse Project website. They are $25 for the public and $15 for children and members of RRP. Tickets include dinner.

Clinics scheduled for Oct. 8 also are free.

“This year’s finale will sell out,” RRP President Steuart Pittman said. “Word has spread that this is the finest display of horse training skills anywhere. Observing what good trainers can do in such a short time with a Thoroughbred racehorse is inspiring, leaving the audience eager to somehow connect with these amazing creatures.”

On the final day, spectators are welcome to audit for free as top trainers in each discipline instruct Makeover contestants before they head home to continue the work that ultimately secures the future of these horses.

At least half of the Thoroughbreds in this year’s Makeover will be offered for sale. Purchase prices last year averaged $8,000 with the highest going for $30,000. Buyers will have online and printed catalogues and opportunities to examine and ride horses at seller’s discretion.

“The Makeover is a great place to shop for a Thoroughbred,” Hall of Fame rider Bernie Traurig said. “The trainers selected these horses carefully, brought them along to the best of their ability, and are hoping to sell them on so that they can do it again the next year. There are hundreds to choose from all in one place.”

(Photo courtesy of Retired Racehorse Project)