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Racehorse Aftercare Charities of Saratoga - Thoroughbred Retirement FoundationThoroughbred Retirement Foundation

Racehorse Aftercare Charities of Saratoga


SARATOGA SPRINGS, NY – On August 20, six Saratoga Springs Thoroughbred/Standardbred racehorse rescue organizations –Thoroughbred Retirement Foundation, ACTT Naturally, Old Friends at Cabin Creek, ReRun at North Country Horses, Heading for Home Racehorse Retraining and Adoption, and Saratoga WarHorse – announced that they had formed a coalition called Racehorse Aftercare Charities of Saratoga.

Saratoga Springs Mayor Joanne Yepsen, then read a proclamation that to the audience at the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame that declared August as “Thoroughbred Racehorse Retirement Month.” She added that Saratoga Springs is the first the first city to address responsible racehorse stewardship in an official city pledge.

“There is no question that Saratoga’s economic vitality is strongly influenced by horse racing,” said Mayor Yepsen. “Saratoga Springs is proud to be a racing community and grateful to the Thoroughbreds and Standardbreds who enhance our quality of life. The least we can do for the horses that work so hard for us is embrace the cause of aftercare. The City is honored to lead this charge.”
Yepsen also encouraged the mayors of other cities in the United States that host racetracks to make racehorse aftercare a priority. She hopes that the new alliance will show them how it’s done.
“It has been my experience with non-profits that they often feel they are in competition with one another,” Yepsen said. “But I think Racehorse Aftercare Charities of Saratoga will do very well because everyone is working together.”

TRF Director of Internal Affairs Diana Pikulski made the announcement of the coalition, and Valerie
Buck of ACTT Naturally; Joe Battaglia of Heading for Home; Amanda Vance of ReRun at North Country Horses; Joann Pepper of Old Friends at Cabin Creek and Katherine Pelham of Saratoga War Horse added brief comments. While each member organization of the new alliance concerns itself with the re-homing and care of former racehorses, each has a particular focus.

The TRF, the oldest and largest Thoroughbred after-care organization, features a Second Chances program that pairs horses with prison inmates to provide a home for the former and a vocation in equine care for the latter. ACTT Naturally uses gentle and natural horsemanship methods to re-train horses and to help women cope with physical, emotional and psychological problems. Old Friends at Cabin Creek is a self-described “living museum” that welcomes visitors weekly and helps educate people by getting them close to the horses. Heading for Home also looks out for the welfare of Standardbred horses. ReRun at North Country Horses has a special affinity toward children and Saratoga Warhorse has received national acclaim for its work with veterans.

On Friday, September 4, the New York Racing Association has invited Racehorse Aftercare Charities of Saratoga to its Community Outreach Booth at Saratoga Race Course to educate thousands of guests and collect donations to support its cause.

The following day, Saturday, September 5, the 5K “Run for the Horses” to benefit participating local racehorse retirement charities will take place in SPA State Park.

“The New York Racing Association is fully committed to equine advocacy and aftercare for our all-important and beloved thoroughbred athletes,” said New York Racing Association Community Relations Manager Joanie Omeste. “We are proud to support the charitable programs most closely aligned with our industry and encourage all those who benefit from this great sport to support these magnificent athletes in in their retirement years.”

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