RRTP's 100 Day TB Challenge Participant
Mizzen Mast – Directive, by Deputy Minister
Breeder: Sagamore Farm (MD)
Owner: Sagamore Farm
On June 3, 2012, Gunport made her racing debut at Colonial Downs (click here to watch video). The comment on the race chart describes her performance in one word: "outrun." With this effort, she made it clear that she was not competitive as a racehorse. Her connections at Sagamore recognized the filly's balance and athleticism, and she joined the RRTP team and is now one of the 100 Day Thoroughbred Challenge's fantastic four.
Gunport is 16.1 hands, with a short, strong topline, long legs, refined build, and a beautifully-set neck; she is an athlete from every angle. In her 14-day training video, RRTP President Steuart Pittman remarked,"I'm sure Sagamore is not interested in breeding for the show ring, and would rather have had this horse win some races, but they should still be commended. Somebody's got a good eye to create a horse like this, and it reminds us that breeding a racehorse isn't all that different from breeding a sporthorse."
(click here to view), she handled the new environment and the new rider willingly but nervously. In the first few minutes of her two-week training video (click here to view), she was on her toes while she settled into a trot. An unskilled rider might be tempted to micromanage a horse like Gunport, but if she feels restricted, she gets quite tense. Michelle keeps her moving, does not fuss with her face, and expertly guides the mare into a nice rhythm at the walk, trot, and canter.
(click here for her 30-day video), her nervous energy quickly turns into verve, and she becomes a game, willing partner. Around the cross country course during our January photo session, Gunport cantered brightly, waiting for Michelle's next cue. As the approached little logs, she handled them neatly and with great style, like the A-plus student that she is.
(click here for training update). She is out of training until she is fully healed, and my fingers are crossed that we will hear more about this promising perfectionist very soon.
- Sarah Andrew