Last week, prominent Thoroughbred racehorse owners Gary Barber, Adam Wachtel and Bradley Weisbord partnered with emerging aftercare organization Changing Leads Thoroughbred Retraining Project to claim and retire Dig Alittle Deeper. The 4-year-old gelding, was stakes-placed in Canada as a juvenile but, failed to hit the board in six claiming races this year. The group contacted friend and fellow racehorse owner Ali Goodrich, who is founder and president of Changing Leads, to make arrangements for Dig Alittle Deeper’s aftercare and retraining.
“Our goal in this industry is to win Graded races and it is always fun to have Saturday horses. However, it’s a tough business and we miss many more times than we hit and unfortunately Dig Alittle Deeper didn’t turn into that Saturday horse but it wasn’t for lack of heart,” said Brad Weisbord.
He made 24 starts in 2 ½ years but failed to hit the board in his last ten starts, ending his career at bottom level racetrack Mahoning Valley for $4,000 claiming tag. “Once I purchase a horse I never take that horse out of stable mail,” said Weisbord. “And watching him run at that level was not something I could live with, my partners and I feel good about giving him the retirement he deserved.”
Owners Barber, Wachtel, and Weisbord stepped up in a big way to give this gelding a great home for the rest of his life.
“It’s wonderful to see distinguished owners taking care of their horses—even their former runners,” says Goodrich. “Retiring horses while they are sound gives them every opportunity to excel in a second sporting career. It also gives a dignified ending to their career on the track.”
The ownership group led by Barber and Wachtel raced Dig Alittle Deeper during his three-year-old season before loosing him for a claiming tag. Wachtel and Barber have been at the top of the game in 2015; Barber winning the G1 Breeders Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf at Keeneland with Catch A Glimpse, and Wachtel has had a huge year of his own with (G1) Del Mar Oaks winner Sharla Rae and (G2) Indiana Derby winner, Tiz Shea D.
About Changing Leads: Changing Leads Thoroughbred Retraining Project, a 501(c)(3) not for profit organization dedicated rehabilitating, retraining, and rehoming retired Thoroughbred racehorses, was founded in 2014 by Goodrich, along with professional hunter/jumper trainer Kirstin Murphy, and Team Valor International Vice President Megan Jones. To date, 38 horses have entered the organization’s retraining program, and more than half of those horses have been placed in new homes and are enjoying second careers. To learn more go to: www.changingleads.org