Pegasus Fever was a $300k yearling but his body did not hold up to racing. His story interested me because when he hurt his knee his trainer had a surgery done to repair it. Then he was using him as a pony horse and he was so sound they decided to run him again when he bowed a tendon in the opposite leg. Looking at his track picture you can imagine he may hard on his body. He is an absolute tank of a horse.
When Pegasus came to CANTER he thought he was all that and then some. I took him to our lay-up farm and went OMG watching him run around like a stallion. I think he was pumped up on some feel good drugs. We were sort of intimidated by this huge horse who didn’t seem to slow down. He was quite sound and full of himself.
After a few weeks of turnout he did a 180 in the attitude department and quickly became the farm favorite. It’s hard to describe Pegasus but he’s sort of a big slobbering dog in a horse body. He’s always the first up to the gate, he lives for food, he has to be in your business all the time and he just loves people. Our farm owners absolutely loved Pegasus and their kids would go out and brush him. He loved coming over in the summer to be squirted down with the hose. Whenever I would go to the farm he would have to be picking up the lunge line, the lunge whip, dragging around halters and just getting into everything. He was not lacking in the personality department.
We had not really figured out what we were going to do with Pegasus. He needed a light riding career but with all his racing jewelry it would take the right person to come along and look past it. Finding homes for horses that aren’t 100% clean legged is very challenging. Since we had so many that were sound and easy to move into homes Pegasus just hung out. He had been at the farm since October of 2010 growing into his new shape 🙂
I was asked if CANTER had any horses that might work for some ceremonial police events as well as be a light riding horse for a beginner rider. Pegasus immediately came to mind as something that would work for that. He’s absolutely not scared of a thing and he loves people. His quiet personality seemed like it would work. There was one problem…I had never ridden the horse!
Um, yeah so we just sort of winged it and I went to pick him up yesterday in hopes that he would fit. I said I would get on him and make sure and if he wasn’t as good as I thought then we would just call it off.
It must be a Christmas miracle but he was even better than I could have asked for. It’s a cold windy day and he literally arrived in the dark last night. You know he’s got to be nervous considering he hasn’t been off our farm in a year but he seemed to relax once I started brushing him.
When I brought out the tack you could see him start to get very confused. He was making all sorts of faces and Kurt asked what he was doing. I said that was his display of nerves. I walked him out to the ring and while he was looking around it was almost with a sense of adventure. Yay, somebody is going to ride me. How cool is this? Wow, riding with jumps. Cool! Lots of things to see and fun things to do.
I walked him around and he didn’t seem to be even slightly bothered by a thing. He walked right up and sniffed the black barrels of doom
I lunged him around for about a minute before giving up on it because he obviously did not need it. I hopped right up and around we went. He’s fat, out of shape and slightly ouchy on his just trimmed feet but perfect temperament for a beginner rider. I flopped around, kicked him, pulled on him and tested his patience. He prefers to just stop so getting him to go was quite the challenge. I laughed so hard trying to get him to canter. He was not amused!
I felt like my legs barely fit around him so kicking him to getting him to go was hard! He’s a tank and feels like you are sitting on a barrel.
Here is some video so go ahead and be prepared to laugh. Don’t mind my cackling!
He was just making me laugh with his totally relaxed nature. He’s so out of shape so going fast was just not on his agenda for the day.
Bill has a lot of experience with standardbred’s and has been involved in the harness racing industry for many years so he is a good horseman but he’s not done a lot of riding. He wanted to work with the mounted unit and participate in some of the ceremonial events so he needed a quiet forgiving mount that he could learn to ride on. Some may think it’s crazy to pick a thoroughbred for something like that but Pegasus has exactly the right temperament. Bill could look past the old injuries and know that Pegasus would have limitations and that he will need some maintenance along the way.
He was shocked at how big Pegasus was both in size and girth 🙂 He is a total beginner rider but got up and had a walk and trot around. His wife and kids were in the car making bets on whether or not he would stay on 🙂 Now here is a horse who just arrived yesterday and is having his first day of riding. It’s cold and windy. My neighbor got a new four-wheeler and is riding full blast down the field right next to the ring. Bill is on the buckle of the reins with his legs around the back of Pegasus belly and Pegasus is just plugging along without a care in the world. Yep, this is going to be a good match.
Now we were just worried about big old Pegasus fitting in his smallish 2 horse trailer but Pegasus walked right up and squished his butt in there. I just got a text that he settled in great and they love him. I told them to bring him back if it doesn’t work out but we don’t see that happening. Bill will be taking lessons and riding Pegasus at home to get his riding muscles in shape.
I’m very excited at the thought of Pegasus representing CANTER on the police force! We will absolutely have to be there to get pictures.