Friday, October 29, 2010


It was a difficult decision, but Tabby Lane is going to take some time off. She's doing great and appears to all to be a happy, healthy well adjusted filly, but on the racetrack she is most definitely not the filly who finished 2nd behind a track record in a $32,000 Optional Claiming race at Tampa Bay Downs. Maybe she doesn't like the northern latitudes? Maybe she does love palm trees? Maybe she's in love with a vet tech in Florida? I have no earthly idea what the deal is with her but the time came to make a decision: drop her down or give her a break.

After consulting with the partners we were split. My gut said turn her out and give her a break, but I approached our trainer, Bernell Rhone, and asked for his opinion and we talked about it. What it came down to for me was whether or not we had a chance to salvage her career or not. After her bailing during her last effort at $7500 the thought of dropping a healthy horse to the bottom rung - one who won at $25,000 less than a year ago - was not only unappealing, but seemed to defeat the purpose of getting her back on track. If she wasn't going to fire, for whatever the reason, she wasn't going to fire no matter how low we dropped her.

We know she loved Tampa and did well there - for whatever the reason. She's hit the board enough so we have some money in the bank. Because she can't speak, we can only presume at her reasons for her lackluster performances, but if a little time away can restore her to her former success level, then it is worth the chance. I am a bit afraid if we go lower and she still doesn't do well that she'll be frustrated and she'll just stop trying. If you've been around racehorses at all, you've seen this happen. Once they go that far it is SO hard to get them back. I'd rather not push that envelope if we have a chance at bringing her back to her former station.

Bernell was leaning that way himself but, of course, she's our horse and our decision. Vacation time it is. We'll have her turned out in Oklahoma until it's time for the Rhone barn to head south. She'll join the caravan and then start her road back. It could be late December or early January before we see her on the track - hopefully a new and improved mare!


Anonymous said...

good luck.

G. Rarick said...

Time off is never the wrong thing. But she doesn't sound like she'll be off too long if you hope to be racing again in late December or January! It's common for us to give them the winter, then come back for spring. Maybe she's operating on a European kinda schedule!

ReRun said...

Thank you, thank you, thank you, Tom, for taking the road less travelled these days with racehorses whose performance is slipping.

And thank you for pointing out the impact of claiming races on the horse's psyche and, of course, the risk of injury and being claimed away to a less thoughtful owner as you.

From all of us at ReRun, Inc., Kudos for your decision as a responsible horse owner to give the girl some time off.

-Christine Orman, Ph.D.
ReRun, Inc.


As an owner myself -- I could not have said it better than ReRun. Remember, there is no horse industry without the horse. When we disregard the well-being of our beloved horse we are DONE! Susan Kayne.

Ted Grevelis said...

Thanks, everyone, for reading and especially taking the itme to comment. I really do believe that if you take care of the horse, the horse will take care of you!