|Tuesday, September 13, 2016||Contact: Shannon Luce (859) 224-2716|
|The Jockey Club’s T.I.P. Program Announces Non-Competition Award Winners|
The Jockey Club Thoroughbred Incentive Program (T.I.P.) today announced the recipients of its two non-competition awards, the T.I.P. Thoroughbred of the Year Award and the T.I.P. Young Rider of the Year Award, for 2016.
The Thoroughbred of the Year Award recognizes a Thoroughbred that has excelled in a non-competitive career, such as equine-assisted therapy or police work.
This year’s winner is Big Saga, aka Louie or Shadow Dancer, a therapy horse with The Right Step Inc., in Littleton, Colo.
Big Saga is a 1989 dark bay or brown gelding by Arctic Saga out of Don’t Plan, and was foaled in Idaho. Before transitioning into therapeutic riding, Big Saga excelled in the show ring. For many years, he was division champion in the Colorado Hunter Jumper Association. He taught numerous children about riding, and he had three different young owners who he helped bring up through the horse show ranks.
Big Saga has also exceled as a therapy horse. According to The Right Step, he has a wonderful work ethic and is always ready to go. He is kind and patient with humans and horses alike and carries some of the youngest and smallest clients with great care.
“Louie isn’t a horse to stop and hold still for very long. But one remarkable day he did just that,” said Christine Remy, board chair of The Right Step. “In a therapeutic riding lesson he stopped, planted, and refused to budge no matter what his horse leader did. The instructor realized what was happening and had the side walkers secure the rider. The rider lost control of his body and proceeded to have a seizure. Louie’s sensitivity had kept the rider safe. He had predicted the rider’s seizure.
“The Right Step and our clients are honored to have Louie as a therapy horse. He is a Thoroughbred who has had something to give back and teach us humans in all the stages of his life. And we humans have loved and treasured him all the way through.”
The young rider award, which recognizes a rider 18 or under who owns or leases a Thoroughbred for use in 4-H, Pony Club or other activities, was split among thee riders: Caitlin Dinkel, Morgan Kastner, and Ella MacMaster.
“I am so fortunate to have been introduced to the Thoroughbred breed, and to own one that has been able to not only help me grow as an equestrian, but has also been able to help other people reach their full potential as well,” Caitlin said.
Morgan has already organized T.I.P. awards at two local show series in 2016. She plans to use her T.I.P. award to continue her Business Education degree at Valley City University. She hopes her business degree with help her learn to effectively run a business.
“I would like to start a nonprofit in my area to provide education to Thoroughbred owners and retrain and re-home Thoroughbreds for second careers,” she said.
Ella plans to use her award for training, focusing on attending the North American Junior Young Riders Championships in 2017.
“As I live in Vermont, I would need to travel to the south to compete at spring horse trials next year, including Carolina International and the Fork Horse Trials,” she said. “This is a very expensive goal, but I am dedicated to making my dreams come true.”
Created and announced in October 2011, T.I.P. recognizes and rewards the versatility of the Thoroughbred through sponsorship of Thoroughbred classes and high point awards at sanctioned horse shows, performance awards, and non-competition awards. Additional information about T.I.P. is available at tjctip.com and on the T.I.P. Facebook page at facebook.com/tjctip.
The Jockey Club, founded in 1894 and dedicated to the improvement of Thoroughbred breeding and racing, is the breed registry for North American Thoroughbreds. In fulfillment of its mission, The Jockey Club, directly or through subsidiaries, provides support and leadership on a wide range of important industry initiatives, and it serves the information and technology needs of owners, breeders, media, fans and farms. It is a founding member of the National Thoroughbred Racing Association, the International Federation of Horseracing Authorities, and the Coalition for Horse Racing Integrity and the architect and sole funding source for America’s Best Racing, the broad-based fan development initiative for Thoroughbred racing. You can follow America’s Best Racing at americasbestracing.net as well as on social media platforms Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+, and Instagram.