Tag Archives: Old Friends

Old Friends Receives Second Grant from ASPCA

Funds to Provide New Paddocks for More Retirees

GEORGETOWN, KY – NOVEMBER 21, 2011 – Old Friends, the Thoroughbred Retirement Facility and 501 (c) 3 non-profit organization, has received a second $50,000 grant from the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA). The announcement was made today by Old Friends founder and president Michael Blowen.

In 2009 Old Friends was one of five organizations chosen to participate in the ASPCA’s “Rescuing Racers Initiative,” a $1 million granting opportunity made possible by a generous donor designed to support horses impacted by the racing industry.   Old Friends also received a $50,000 grant in 2010.

The majority of the funds will be used to construct four new paddocks on Old Friends’s Dream Chase Farm in Georgetown, KY, allowing the organization to provide safe retirement for even more Thoroughbreds.

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“Hats Off to the Horses: The Road to The Derby” Online Auction of Couture Kentucky Derby Hats Returns for Third Year

Proceeds to Benefit Old Friends Thoroughbred Retirement

GEORGETOWN, KY – OCTOBER 31, 2011 – Old Friends, the Thoroughbred Retirement Facility in Georgetown, KY, is happy to announce the launch of the third annual “Hats Off to the Horses: The Road to the Derby,” an online auction of exclusive Kentucky Derby hats.

The first of six hats exclusive Derby chapeaus will go on the virtual block November 1st and bidding will be open for 10 days. The first hat will commemorate Hall of Fame Champion Noor.

Interested bidders can visit www.oldfriendsequine.org and follow the link.

In the past two years this the six-month-long charity auction, featuring beautiful hats handcrafted by milliner Sally Faith Steinman, has raised nearly $9,000 for the more than 100 retired racehorses cared for by Old Friends.

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Celebrate Breeders’ Cup Day at Old Friends Sunday November 6

GEORGETOWN, KY — OCTOBER 31, 2011 — Old Friends, the Thoroughbred Retirement Facility in Georgetown, KY, and its 30 retired Breeders’ Cup stars, invite fans to join them for a special celebration of the 2011 Breeders’ Cup on Sunday, November, 6 at 12 noon.

The festivities will take place at Old Friends’s Dream Chase Farm, located at 1841 Paynes Depot Road in Georgetown. Tickets are $25. Members or students tickets are available for $15, and reservations can be made by calling (502) 863-1775.

Guests will enjoy a full BBQ buffet by Tommy Walters of Furlong’s Catering, farm tours, live and silent auctions, a demonstration on the making of Raku/horse hair pottery by the artists of Pottery Rowe, and music by Lexington favorite Roger BonDurant.

And this year guests can also look forward to a special appearance and performance by singer/songwriter Liza G Fly, best known for her song “Zenyatta.”

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Stakes Winner You and I Arrives at Old Friends

GEORGETOWN, KY — OCTOBER 28, 2011 — On Wednesday October 27 Old Friends, the Thoroughbred Retirement Center in Georgetown, KY, happily welcomed GR1-winner and top sire You and I.  The stallion arrived from Washington state and will now be permanently pensioned at the farm.

Woodstead Farm in Chehalis, WA, where he most recently stood stud, donated the 20-year-old son of Kris S to Old Friends.

Campaigned by prominent owner Edmund A. Gann and legendary trainer Bobby Frankel, You and I (Kris S – La Chaposa, by Ups) won 6 of 16 starts including the GR2 Cowdin stakes as a 2-year-old.  The following year he set a track record in the GR3 Riva Ridge Stakes, running the 7 furlongs in 1:20.33. At 4 You and I finally earned his GR 1 capturing the 1995 Metropolitan Handicap and later that year the GR 2 Brooklyn H. His career earnings totaled $701, 235.

During his stallion career You and I sired 15 stakes winners, most notably the five-time GR1-winning filly You.

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Personalized Euthanized at Old Friends

GEORGETOWN, KY — OCTOBER 20, 2011 — Personalized, one of only four foals produced by Hall of Fame champion Precisionist, has died.

The 21-year-old mare was humanely euthanized at Old Friends Thoroughbred Retirement Facility in Georgetown, KY, where she had been pensioned since 2008. The mare was discovered in her paddock having suffered a fractured hip.

“We welcomed Personalized to Old Friends because of our great love for her sire but it wasn’t long before her kind eyes and gentle disposition made her special regardless of her lineage,” said Old Friends president and founder, Michael Blowen.

Owned and bred by Florida-based Fred Hooper, who also bred her sire, Personalized (Precisionist – Ski Title, by Baldski) only had eight starts in her career and no wins, earning only $1,050.  She was discovered in a feedlot Yakima, WA in 2008 by the Columbia Basin Equine Rescue and then found a permanent home at Old Friends.

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Old Friends, The National Museum of Racing & Hall of Fame, and Nick Ryan’s Saloon to Present “Hall of Fame Day at Old Friends”

GEORGETOWN, KY – OCTOBER 6, 2011 – Old Friends, the Thoroughbred Retirement Farm in Georgetown, KY, has partnered with the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame and Lexington’s Nick Ryan’s Saloon to proudly present “Hall of Fame Day at Old Friends” on Monday October 17, 2011.

The event will kick off at 3pm at Old Friends, 1841 Paynes Depot Road in Georgetown, with an observance for the three great Thoroughbred Champions who have been laid to rest at the farm’s official Hall of Fame Cemetery: Skip Away, Noor, and Precisionist.

The afternoon will be highlighted by tours of the farm and visits with many of the stars of the turf now retired at Old Friends.

Hall of Fame Day continues with an evening soiree (6pm) at Nick Ryan’s Saloon, located at 157 West Jefferson Street in Lexington.

Tickets to Nick Ryan’s are $50 and include a BBQ buffet, drinks, live music, and many special guests; reservations can be made by calling (502) 863-1775.

“We’re flattered that the National Racing Hall of Fame has honored Old Friends by designated us as the official cemetery for Hall of Famer’s whose final resting spots may be in jeopardy,” said Old Friends founder, Michael Blowen. “We’re grateful to Nick Ryan’s for their participation and support and we welcome everyone to the event, especially members of the Hall of Fame.”

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Old Friends Day at River Downs Honors Appygolucky

GEORGETOWN, KY – AUGUST 30, 2011 – Monday, Sept. 5 is Old Friends Day at River Downs racetrack in Cincinnati, OH.

Join us for an exciting day of racing as River Downs celebrates the careers of Ohio millionaire Catlaunch and recently retired fan favorite Eagle Time. The benefit will raise money for Old Friends, the Thoroughbred Retirement Facility in Georgetown, KY.

In addition to the second running of the “Old Friends” race, the event, held from 11 AM – 5 PM, will feature a silent auction of select racing memorabilia. Featured items include a Moneigh by Old Friends retiree Danthebluegrassman and other unique collectibles. All proceeds will benefit Old Friends.

While at the track fans are invited to stop by the Old Friends booth and learn more about the organization and its many retired equine athletes.

The Old Friends benefit at River Downs began last year as a tribute to Appygolucky, an Old Friends retiree who was once considered the King of the Claimers at the River Downs. He also set the track record for a mile at Beulah Park, which still stands.

Appy passed away in 2009, but his legacy of helping fellow claiming horses lives on.

For additional information contact Vivien Morrison at val226@aol.com.

About Old Friends
Old Friends is a 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization that cares for more than 100 retired racehorses.  Its Dream Chase Farm, located in Georgetown, KY, is open to tourists daily by appointment. Old Friends also has a satellite facility in Greenfield Center, New York, Old Friends at Cabin Creek: The Bobby Frankel Division, which is also open to visitors. For more information on tours, reservations at the Old Friends B&B, or to make a donation, contact the main farm at (502) 863-1775 or see their website at www.oldfriendsequine.org.

Noor Arrives in Kentucky

GEORGETOWN, KY — AUGUST 29, 2011 — Having traveled cross-country from the Loma Rica Ranch in Grass Valley, CA, the body of deceased Hall of Fame champion Noor will be re-interred in Kentucky at Old Friends, the Thoroughbred Retirement Facility in Georgetown, on Wednesday August 31.

Members of the press and fans are invited to attend the ceremony, which will be held at 10 am at Old Friends’s Dream Chase Farm, 1841 Paynes Depot Road in Georgetown.

In attendance will be Michael Blowen, president and founder of Old Friends, and Charlotte Farmer, the woman who led the effort to exhume Noor and bring his remains to Kentucky.

Noor died in Grass Valley in 1974 at age 29 and was buried in the infield of the old Loma Rica Ranch Racetrack, but the property is now in development for residential and commercial use. He will be re-interred in a new cemetery for Hall of Fame inductees near the entrance of Old Friends.

Noor, son of the superstar stallion Nasrullah, was campaigned by owner-breeder Charles S. Howard (also the owner of Seabiscuit) after the colt’s 3-year-old season in 1948.

Trained by Burley Parke and ridden by Johnny Longden, Noor was voted 1950 handicap champion after winning four out of five head-to-head sprints with Citation and defeating the then 7-year-old Assault. The victories made Noor the first horse to beat two Triple Crown winners.

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Multiple Stakes Winner Prized Arrives at Old Friends

GEORGETOWN, KY — AUGUST 4, 2011 — Old Friends, Thoroughbred Retirement Center in Georgetown, KY, today welcomed Prized, the 1989 Breeders’ Cup Turf champion and sire of the great Brass Hat.

Michael Blowen, president and founder of Old Friends, made the announcement this morning.

The 25-year-old Prized (Kris S -My Turbulent Miss by My Dad George) arrived at the Georgetown farm in excellent condition from Randy and John Funkhouser’s O’Sullivan Farms near Charles Town, W.VA.

Bred by Florida’s Meadowbrook Farm, which campaigned him along with Clover Racing Stables and trainer Neil Drysdale, Prized raced on both the dirt and the turf and had total career earnings of $2,262,555.

As a 3-year-old, Prized won the GR 1 Molson Million at Woodbine and the GR2 Swaps Stakes at Hollywood Park where he famously upset Kentucky Derby and Preakness winner Sunday Silence.

Later that year the dark bay stallion won the Breeders’ Cup Turf, which was his first start on grass.

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Awad, Winner of the 1995 Arlington Million, Dead at 21

GEORGETOWN, KY – JULY 23, 2011 – Millionaire and four-time GR 1 winner Awad has died.  The 21-year-old stallion was discovered early this morning in his paddock at Old Friends, the Thoroughbred Retirement Center in Georgetown, KY, where he has been pensioned since 2006.

According to veterinarian Dr. Douglas Byars and Old Friends founder and President Michael Blowen, the cause of death was a sudden heart attack, but a full necropsy is currently underway at Hagyard Equine Medical Institute in Lexington.

The hard-knocking son of Caveat, Awad raced for seven seasons as a homebred for Maryland’s Ryehill Farm, capturing 14 of his 70 starts. His career earnings totaled $3,270,131.

Awad’s first GR1 win came in the 1993 Secretariat Stakes at Arlington International, which would prove to be a lucky course for the Maryland bred throughout his career. In 1995 he captured the GR1 Arlington Million in record time, 1:58.69, shaving one-fifth of a second off the course mark set by Perrault in 1982.

With the win he not only gave trainer David Donk and jockey Eddie Maple their first Million triumphs, he also became the first horse to ever win both of those GR1 turf events at Arlington.

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