I purchased Tom, JC Tomthebomb, from Finger Lakes Racetrack in Farmington, New York in May. Very rarely do I spend the kind of money I spent on him on an OTTB, but he was super cute and advertised as 16.3 at only 3 y/o. The trek down there isn't that far, only 4 hours, so I was pretty excited when he came up on my computer screen. My dad and I set off early one morning and were a the track by 10 am. When Tom was led out to meet us, I couldn't believe how cute he was. however, he was definitely not 16.3. Given that I had already spent a decent chunk of money getting his paperwork done to bring him home, I wasn't going to leave him there, so we loaded up and headed home. I guessed he was probably 16h, and I was bang on. Well, he's 16 1/2h.
|How can you not love this face!?|
He was pretty anxious about life, so he had the whole summer and fall to just hang out and learn to be a horse again, and that things weren't nearly as stressful as he thought they were. I don't keep any of my horses inside, and Tom is no exception. He does better outside anyway. They all come in for about 30-60 min daily to eat their grain and relax, then out they go.
I started Tom back into work 2 weeks ago. I had ridden him a few times this fall, just w/t in the ring for 10 min a couple times and once on a hack in the field with a friend. He is SO easygoing (ie. LAZY). Getting this horse to show any amount of spark is ridiculous; he just doesn't care. I rode him a few times, just seeing what he knew, getting his steering figured out and the fact that he had to go when I said go. We did a little canter each way, which was lovely once I convinced him it wouldn't be that much effort. He picked up both leads no problem, and is actually quite balanced. Then he began work on the longe. He's been in side reins 3 times now, and is really starting to understand that I would like him to try and stretch down and move out. I keep our work short on the longe, 20 min at the most, as he is such a baby still and it's hard work for him.
I can really see him enjoying being back to work. He is so happy to stand in the cross ties and be groomed and loved on. He stands so well, so quiet, and readily takes the bit and walks out to the ring. He was quite funny today, with everyone else running around like idiots, he decided he needed to as well, though he was very polite about it. He's starting to get very confident about where his feet are, and he can canter a very nice circle when he gets his motor going. We also did some trot poles for the first time, and he stretched very nicely over them.
He's in a bit of an ugly baby stage right now, but I think with time and work, he's going to be such a nice little horse for someone!