Today is Moe’s 21st birthday! Thanks to his baby face and permanently cheerful expression, he continues to pass as half his age.
Moe was bred by Hackett Brothers Thoroughbred, Inc. in Manchester, Tennessee. He raced once as a 3 year old in a claiming race; the official race report states he was bumped hard at the start, sent wide, and was outrun. He won a whopping $36.
When I bought Moe in 2003, I was in-between horses. I was riding whatever I could beg, borrow, or steal while I shopped for a replacement for Spike, my Appendix gelding whose hock surgery had ended his (very short and very unsuccessful) eventing career. I’d ridden a fellow Pony Clubber’s very nice Quarter Horse gelding for a few months until he was sold. My high school English teacher let me ride her elderly Thoroughbred mare who was just excellent until she died. (The horse, not my teacher.) I tried riding my family’s mutt-auction-horse-turned-all-arounder, Buster, but his devious attitude and refusal to deal with footing that even looked damp didn’t bode well for eventing. (Or doing anything but standing around and eating, really.)
At an early spring schooling horse trial, a Pony Club friend mentioned her trainer had a young Thoroughbred gelding for sale. This horse trial was the gelding’s very first horse show; he was competing at Beginner Novice. He won on his dressage score, and I took him for a test ride after the show. A few weeks later, he was mine!
Over the years, Moe has carried me over big cross-country jumps, to victory in match races against our college friends, and through 3’6 jumper jackpot classes. He’s taught me to be brave, to love speed, and to always see the long spot. He packs around beginner and experienced riders with the same cheerful attitude.
Here’s to another 21 years, Richnfree!