My Pal Jerry ran for Wasabi Ventures Stables from September 2017 through October 2018. He was retired via Beyond the Wire and now is loving life with Jessie. Keep reading to hear her latest update on this nine year old gelding.

The Best Pal

My Pal Jerry is just that, my best pal. He is always happy to see you, loves being pampered, and enjoys trying new snacks. To date I would say peanut butter crackers are his favorite.

Jerry has successfully completed three novice level events over the winter. We’ve started schooling some training level jumps, and he is eager to answer the harder questions. The plan is to do his first training level event in the spring.

Indoor horses?

He is an absolute joy in every way. If the doggie door were slightly bigger I’m sure I would find him on the couch with the dogs.

To read the previous update on Jerry, please click here.

Many thanks to Alison for providing this terrific update on former WVS runner, Willie the Whale.

Willie has been wintering well living on the farm. He’s integrated really well with my two other geldings (a quarter horse and a paint horse) and is often caught playing with the young paint. 

I had high hopes of entering the RRP with Willie this year … but that got put off because my husband and I found out some exciting news – we are expecting our first child! 

With finding out that we were expecting, I put my RRP dreams on hold. I knew I wouldn’t have enough time to adequately prepare, and that wouldn’t be fair to Willie. 

Learning new things

Willie and I have had quite a few really good rides under saddle! When I first got him, one of the hardest things for him was standing at the mounting block, but he’s doing really well with that. In fact, I’ve even taught him how to sidepass into the mounting block for me! Before I got too far along in my pregnancy, we were working a lot on collection and self-carriage. He was doing a great job and really putting the dots together, especially at the trot!

And continuing with groundwork

I’m about 28 weeks pregnant now, so unfortunately, my saddle time has been limited. That just means that Willie and I have gone back to good ol’ groundwork. Lots of lunging, and like I said, I even taught him how to sidepass into the mounting block for me! We are also working on learning lateral movements on the ground (this way when I can get back on him, it’ll be super easy to translate to under saddle!). I’ve attached a photo of William doing a “leg yield” on the ground for me. 

I’m so anxious to get back into the saddle with him! My due date is May 16th and I’m anxiously awaiting spring and summer to get back to my training goals … although, it’s been fun coming up with creative new challenges for Willie and me on the ground. 

To read Willie’s previous update, please click here.

In early August 2022, Wasabi Ventures Stables and Franklin Ave. Equine decided it was time to retire Blue Oyster with Jason and Cristin. She began retirement with two months of stall rest. Thankfully, she healed well and was able to move to a small paddock at the end of September.

Farm life for Blue

I reached out to Jason, who shared the latest on Blue Oyster:

She is doing wonderful.  She has moved out to a large paddock with friends and is enjoying farm life!  You can definitely see it in her face that she knows this is home now and just loves everyone.  She remains so gentle despite her size and loves any treat you are willing to share.  We get a sense from her movement in the paddocks that she should excel in dressage. Blue will begin training at the end of March.

To see more photos of Blue, be sure to follow us on Facebook and check out her album.

To read updates on other WVS horses we follow, click here.

When we assist in the retirement of Wasabi Ventures Stables horses, we place them in good homes with different opportunities. Broodmares, polo ponies, and more are the next careers for these horses. Some may have owners who want a challenge, such as the Retired Racehorse Project’s (RRP)Thoroughbred Makeover.

This year two of our retirees have owners/trainers, who have applied and been accepted into this year’s makeover.

This year’s entrants

first ride

Grace adopted Play (JC Shecanflatoutplay) in August 2022. Retired with an injury, her road to the RRP Thoroughbred Makeover has been slow and steady. Starting with stall rest, working her way up to walking, and eventually riding, Play has been a terrific student.

Katie adopted Gilly (JC Mob Mentality) in October 2022. Leaving the track sound, she had fewer obstacles to overcome. After some downtime while she acclimated to off-track life, Gilly has been training with Katie, as she learns new skills.

The road to the RRP

After applying in January, Grace and Katie received their acceptance emails on February 15th from The RRP. Now the work can begin in earnest, as they determine in which discipline each horse will compete.

We look forward to more updates on Play and Gilly, as they make their way to the Thoroughbred Makeover!

Beauty or “B” (JC Wave Jumper) is “the apple of my eye” and vice versa. We have gone through all kinds of transitions since 11/5/2021 (the day we met).

Injury and recovery

Over last summer, we were just getting going, and she suddenly went lame. Vet x-rays determined a popped splint. That came with an 8-week recovery and no limitations after. So, we did just that: icing and love with much time off with TLC and continuous support. She recovered well.

We slowly came back to work with lots of walk, halt transitions; mostly done bareback. Any chance to work on ground manners is still a win for us. Not because she’s bad, but because we connect over and over, which transfers into new experiences. When she fully recovered, we began more walk, trot. Walk, trot, canter. She has remained safe, willing, and over all wonderful in temperament.

Walk, trot, canter, then. . .

I didn’t document much over the winter but focused on our bonding. As for progress, there was wasn’t much to report. We continued to work on leg response, forwardness, and our journey to taking the bit for collection. My friend and trainer found an excellent neighboring property to practice going off property. We rode with some calm horses who set the vibe. Beauty had lots of opinions but seemed to be having fun and gave me a safe ride from start to finish. We are looking forward to more rides like that as it gets warmer.

To read Beauty’s last update, please click here.

Many thanks to Beauty’s owner and best friend, Samantha, for providing this update!

Dill (JC Vineyard Harbour) has been living with his BFF, Samyi, for four years. In that time there have been many ups and downs in his journey as an off-track thoroughbred, but these experiences have only strengthened the bond between the two of them.

Samyi shared the following update with us:

Dill is doing amazing and (not jinxing us or anything) Dill officially has his T.I.P number. He is ready to make his official come back this spring. We are currently working on loping the barrel pattern and running many drills. He has mastered the “roll back” in our training.

His barn has a training track, so he loves the days he gets to go condition the most, unless it’s grooming and bath day. He would much prefer that day over others.

We are so excited to be healed, vet cleared, and happy to be making our way to a late start, but our true start. A few years late! But we got here and have formed a bond of trust unbreakable along the way.

We are truly grateful that Dill has such an amazing partner and horseperson in Samyi. This bond is one that really cannot be broken.

To read previous updates on Dill, please click here.

The first full year of operations for The Horse Fund was highly successful on multiple levels. Not only did we facilitate safe and secure retirements for a number of thoroughbreds, we also shared updates on many retirees, as well as surpassed our fundraising goals. Let’s take a moment and look at each of those categories in review.


In 2022, we assisted in the retirement of 14 Wasabi Ventures Stables (WVS) horses. Nine of these retirements were initiated by Wasabi. Of those nine, we made charitable donations to five aftercare organizations, with whom the horses were placed. The other four retirements incurred no fees.

In July we made our first private purchase of a former WVS horse, which we then retired. This purchase was followed by four more purchases through the end of the year, making a grand total of five purchases.


We published 45 articles on our website last year. Of those articles, we had 33 updates on retirements, private purchases, and retirees. We also posted 5 interviews with aftercare organizations. The remainder of our articles were promotional items for The Horse Fund, including upcoming events and other interesting tidbits.


The best way to describe our fundraising in 2022 is amazing! Although our auctions and Shamrock Kid Day celebrations raised slightly less than anticipated, our 12 Days of Giving campaign raised three times the anticipated amount. What played a huge role in this achievement was the generosity of three matching donors with amounts of $3,000, $2,000, and $1,500, as well another donor who gave $100 for each of the 12 days. All three goals were met and exceeded, for a grand total of $13,163.57 raised. This generosity will assist us in continuing to privately purchase former WVS horses who are ready to be retired.

In Review

Last year truly was a success on all levels. In 2023 as we continue to track these horses, both before and after retirement, we hope to make a greater impact in the world of thoroughbred aftercare. We want not only to educate others on the importance of aftercare but also to inspire other horse ownership groups to take a more proactive stance.

To take a peek at the fourteen retirees of 2022, please click here.

Here’s the latest update on Alli, FKA Allied Invasion, from his owner, Claire.

I read an OTTB post a few weeks ago that really captured what Allī has taught me. “Your horse doesn’t wear a watch. So, he’s in no hurry.” Allī has taught me the patience of a walk warm-up. He definitely has an opinion about walking easily for 10 minutes, on a loose rein and a gentle supporting leg before he’s ready to “get to work.” I’ve learned to just let him walk without any pressure first. I might halt softly and then ask for an upward transition a few times during the warm-up. I get much further in my ride if I allow for the lighter touch, rather than demanding he move off my leg immediately. Otherwise, he just resists. (This is new for me because my other OTTB preferred you be strong in the beginning to help him warm up.)

Trust the process

I’ve also learned that he will make great progress and then have a week where he goes backwards. This has also taught me to trust his process, back down a step or two, and let him build his confidence again. Once I accepted this is how he learns, these backward slides are fewer and we move forward again in no time. He is also a horse I have learned to be persistent when he isn’t listening. If I am patient and keep asking, he will acquiesce. If I give in to him, I will be having the same argument with him for a week.

Cold weather interruption

We’ve had some bitterly cold weather here in New Jersey this past week. So, I elected to work on ground work, rather than riding. Expectedly, my first ride back in a week, he was definitely up, but he did well once he allowed himself to relax and move forward. Allī LOVES trot pole configurations. I try to have a different configuration every day. It keeps him fresh, and it’s a great way to engage his mind while we are working in the indoor. Allī also loves lateral work. He has a mean turn on the haunches.

Diet changes

I’ve also treated him for ulcers once more. He was exhibiting signs around Thanksgiving. Upon the vet’s recommendation, I also added Purina Outlast to his diet. It made an immediate difference in both his weight and demeanor. He’s not as mouthy on the ground. It also made his coat gleam even more. I am grateful to Allī every day. He is such a personality, and I am enjoying the partnership.

Many thanks to Claire for this terrific and thorough update. To read Alli’s previous update, please click here.

Bootleggin Posse was claimed by Wasabi Ventures Stables in May 2022 at Canterbury Park. He won on his first time out in their silks, but throughout the meet showed a lack of interest in racing. He was retired in September and moved to a new home with Hannah, where he’s been nicknamed Boots.

Hannah kindly sent this update:

Boots has been off the track since September and is loving his new life! He’s the most spectacular and laid back horse I’ve ever worked with. He’s taken every new thing he’s learned like a perfect gentleman. Currently I’m training him to be a hunter jumper. We started over small cross rails a couple weeks ago, and he proves to love it! Even if he’s free lunging he will often pop over a jump or two, even at the walk.

He also enjoys being outside on the trails on more relaxing days when the weather has been nice. I love him so incredibly much and feel so fortunate that I have him and that he’s remained in good health!

We love happily ever after stories such as this and look forward to sharing more updates on Boots. To read about another WVS retiree, please click here.

In late November and early December, The Horse Fund celebrated the 12 Days of Giving. Each day we featured one of the Wasabi Ventures Stables horses who retired in 2022. As of this writing, Wasabi Ventures has retired nine horses with our assistance, and The Horse Fund has privately purchased five horses in order to retire them. Every day we highlighted one of those horses, sharing information on its career and its path to retirement.

Setting New Goals

As this was a fundraising event, we also asked for donations to help support our aftercare efforts in 2023. We had three WVS club members who offered to be matching donors. The goals were $3,000, $2,000, and $1,500. To reach a total of $13,000 from our club (including the matches) seemed like a huge reach to me, as our total raised on Giving Tuesday 2021 was $4,100.

On the first day, we raised $1,175. That was a fantastic start, but I wondered if the final goal was possible. With the first day most likely having the greatest donations, would there be enough inspiration in the next eleven days to reach $6,500 in matching donations?

On Day 2 I received a pleasant surprise. A club member offered to make a $1,200 donation but wanted to add $100 each day to the total. Beginning every day’s fundraising with $100 definitely made for a good start.

During the campaign, I shared the day’s featured retiree on WVS Slack and social media, and donations would trickle in. On Day 3 we reached our first matching goal of $3,000. We reached our second matching goal of $2,000 on Day 8. Finally, on Day 12, we hit our final goal of $1,500. Once that goal was reached, the donations didn’t stop, as several more were made.

12 Days of Giving Totals

In total, we raised $13,195 from sixty-two different donors. This money should enable us to privately purchase four former WVS horses next year and provide them with safe and secure retirements.

I am truly grateful for every one of the sixty-two donors who helped The Horse Fund reach this incredible fundraising goal. Also, I want to extend an extra thank you to my three matching donors and my $100 daily donor, who made a huge difference in this year’s fundraising.

Words cannot express how fortunate I feel to work with people who believe in thoroughbred aftercare in their words, actions, and donations.