We are delighted to see READER’S CHOICE looking so well in his new home after racing, especially as his journey hasn’t always been plain sailing. It is with great credit to the love and patience shown by his new owner that he is now on his route to recovery.
Read below the ongoing story of an ex-racehorse and a self-confessed novice rider navigating life & learning together.
Readers’ Choice (Trevor) came to us in May 2019 after a short spell at Mills Retraining. I hadn’t ridden since childhood, but my wife had owned horses previously, albeit a few years ago. His kind gentle manner won my wife’s heart and then mine. Slowly he became my boy, and the adventure began!
I had a lot to learn, and I mean a lot, and it hasn’t always been plain sailing but where’s the fun in that!? I was learning to ride again on him and initially he wasn’t the easiest, some said we were both learning at the same time and, although we have come a long way, the lessons continue!
My passion is hacking, fun rides and improving my riding technique, but I am very close to plucking up the courage to do some dressage and RoR.
Trevor started showing some unusual behaviour last year, so we started investigating the possible causes and, after scoping, we found some gastric ulcers so treated that successfully, but his in-hand behaviour continued. After X-rays, the vets found a kissing spine and, after much deliberation, we decided to operate. Trevor was seven then and in good health, so I wanted to give him a shot and didn’t think it was right to ride him in that condition.
It’s been quite a rollercoaster since the surgery, with lots of “Frank Spencer” moments, all costing a fortune, but fingers crossed we are making some progress now! I think the surgery was definitely the right thing to do now and he is getting stronger all the time, but it’s going to be a long journey getting him to work in an outline and work from behind, especially as I’m not a great rider!
My dream would be to see my kids who are under ten now, ride him in the future, but we will see what happens.
Trevor is testament to the fact ex-racers do have plenty to offer after their racing days are over.