2012 Chestnut Gelding
By Mizzen Mast out of Tortuga Lady by Thunder Gulch
Bred in KY by Peter E. Blum Thoroughbreds, LLC

Last raced: 8/6/2016 at Delaware Park

Trained by: Cathal A. Lynch

Starts: 12

Wins: 2

Earnings: $29,340

Adopted: 10/30/2016 by Tamara Shivers from the Lexington, KY facility

Home state: MI

RRP Makeover Trainer: Tamara Shivers

RRP Makeover Primary Discipline: Hunters or Jumpers

 
Did you go see your horse before you adopted him or did you adopt him sight unseen?
I came to the new farm in KY to look at eligible horses for 2017 RRP while I was competing at the 2016 RRP.  So I did get to look at a few horses that were eligible and Gem was in the group.
 
What discipline(s) do you plan to show your horse in at the Makeover?
I am planning on showing either in the Hunters or Jumpers at RRP and possibly Dressage depending on how his training progresses. He seems to have a real natural ability for jumping so I feel at this time that will be the direction we will go.  
 
What is your training routine like?
Currently I am spending a lot of time on ground work with Gem. His top line was weak when I brought him home. He injured his knee so the first month was slow as we spent time getting to know one another and working on getting him feeling better with UlcerGuard treatments, Chiropractic work, Magna Wave therapy, and lots of carrots. In our ground work I am helping him find cadence in his gait and relaxation over his top line. We have also started work over lower jumps from the ground so Gem can find his balance and timing without a rider.  
 
What is your greatest accomplishment (to date) with your horse?
Not sure this could be considered an accomplishment but about a week after starting Gem over fences, he decided to take a solo tour of the farm and jumped out of the pasture he was in. This fence is 5 foot and 4 board oak fencing. After inspecting his tracks in the snow, it appears he jumped out and then just walked around the property checking things out. He had a very small abrasion on his stifle but it didn’t bother him much. He has never attempted to jump out since then and for that I am grateful.
 
What are your goals with your horse?
My goals right now are to get some more time under saddle as he is getting in better shape and balance. I have started a few jumps under saddle and he is very willing. I plan to get him to his first show at the end of March which will be a small schooling show in a lovely heated indoor arena. He may just go for a field trip or if he seems confident I will enter him in a few classes.  
 
What is your favorite thing about your horse?
I have a lot of favorite things about this horse already. He is like a big puppy dog in a huge horse body. He is super smart and picks up on things really quickly. Each training session improves immensely from the one before and for any trainer this is exciting. He is big and beautiful with lots of chrome and personality to match his outside looks. He loves his humans and knickers when he sees you.  
 
What quirks does your horse have?
He has a curious quirk I have never seen on a horse but after he is done working he will stand in the cross ties while I untack him and make this weird sucking sound with his tongue. I thought at first it was from the ulcers he had when I brought him home but now it seems to be a habit and a way of self soothing. Maybe like a young child content and sucking on a thumb? He isn’t sucking wind like a horse that cribs and he seems to be doing it less and less so really not sure what to think about it. Probably a habit that started with the stress of training and now he just has gotten use to it. When you see him in the crossties he looks relaxed and stands quietly but then you hear this sucking sound coming from him but can’t see him moving or doing anything.