By Mike and Mike Correspondent, Jessica Otten
This month in the New Vocations Horse Highlight we are featuring a well-known, classy horse through the Midwest, Virgil, donated by Tyler and Cassie George. As a racehorse, Virgil, the beautiful black gelding stepped onto the race track 95 times, making his way to the winners circle 18 times, rolling in over $200,000 to the bank.
When talking with previous connections, Cassie George, I could tell he was more than just a racehorse to him, he was a pet to her. “Virgil is definitely a girls horse; he loved me unconditionally but wasn't a fan of my husband or the vet,” Casie chuckled.
Virgil spent most of his time racing in Indiana, traveling over to Ohio here and there and made a trip out East a few times. Casie’s favorite memory while racing Virgil is when he won the Ohio Ladies Pace final during Jug week at the Delaware County Fair. “When he won the ladies pace final, he sat last the whole mile and I still don’t even know how he won, but he always finished with all he had, and that day he didn’t disappoint, outside post and all. Even though the purse was small, watching that replay over and over again makes me smile every time. He made a lot of people happy that day and I think he knew it," explained Cassie.
It was a very tough decision to make when it came time to place Virgil with New Vocations because Cassie loved having him in the barn, he was that one horse she looked forward to seeing every morning when she got there. But she knew to retire him was for the best. “He fractured his knee about two years ago, we rested him and tried him again but he was never the same ‘Virgil.’ He just wasn't being competitive anymore. One training day he just didn't seem himself in between training trips, so I completely stripped him, gave him a bubble bath and told Tyler not to worry about going a back with him again. I just didn't want to see him struggle,” stated Cassie.“I know this is a business and about making money, but to me, it isn't everything, I want my horses to be taken care.”
Virgil is the kind of horse that always needs to have a job, the New Vocations program is perfect for him, as they are in search of a new home for him to give him a second career. Cassie said, “He loves having a job. He needed to have a purpose he wasn't quite content with being a pasture pet like my other two retires.”
“Virgil was a quick learner and loves being a riding horse. He has a great personality and seems to have a permanent smile on his face,” stated Winnie Nemeth, Standardbred Program Director.
Virgil will be posted very soon for adoption, be sure to visit www.newvocations.org and check out all of the amazing athletes we have for adoption, remember, make your next horse an ex-racehorse!
This Months Feature - Virgil
Photo Credit: Shelley Johnson
In 2018, Mike and Mike wanted to give back to the sport of harness racing. We are working together with the New Vocations Racehorse adoption program to help with a give-back campaign. You can help support our cause in multiple ways. If you click the photo above it takes you directly to the New Vocations donation page where any amount is a good amount to donate.
Each month we will feature a horse that has gone through the program at New Vocations. You can find a complete bio with adoption information right here on this part of the site. Help Mike and Mike give back in 2018 by supporting the New Vocations Racehorse Adoption Program.