October 2013 Issue - page 1

LANC., PA 17604
Vol. 20 No.9
Our 20th Year
October 2013
by Terry Conway
What’s the old adage, can’t
teach an old hunting dog new
tricks? This is typically sound
advice, and especially true in
the sport of thoroughbred racing
where change is exceedingly
Hall of Fame trainer Shug
McGaughey’s methods have
been consistent over nearly four
decades. They’ve worked well.
He has conditioned four Hall of
Fame horses-- unbeaten Per-
sonal Ensign, Easy Goer, Inside
Information and 2013 inductee
Lure. His other champions
include Heavenly Prize, Queena,
Rhythm, Smuggler, Storm Flag
Flying and Vanlandingham. His
nine Breeders’ Cup victories ties
for second to only D. Wayne
Lukas. He won his first Kentucky
Derby with Orb last May.
Still, if you ask McGaughey,
62, he’ll say you’re never too old
to learn.
After Orb’s grueling Triple
Crown campaign, McGaughey
decided Orb was in need of some
good, old fashioned R&R. In
the past the trainer would have
shipped the Malibu Moon colt
up to the trainer’s summer base
at Saratoga to prepare for the big
races this fall. Instead, Mc-
Gaughey sent Orb to the Fair Hill
Training Center a day after the
Belmont Stakes.
“The trainers who are
there-- Graham Motion, Michael
Matz, Michael Trombetta, Tony
Dutrow-- all speak very highly
about it,” said McGaughey
recently at Fair Hill. “I’m an old
racetrack guy, so Fair Hill was
all new to me. I never thought
about shipping my horses there.
But once I got there and looked
around, I got it. We were in the
right place. It’s been a huge
change in attitude for me.”
The initial plan called for
Orb to be there two weeks. The
Derby Winner Orb’s Connections Purchase Barn at Fair Hill
Derby champ wound up stay-
ing for more than two months.
McGaughey first came to Fair
Hill at the end of June. Bruce
Jackson, owner of the Equine
Therapy Center, and Jenn Patter-
son, McGaughey’s exercise rider
and assistant trainer, convinced
him that Orb was doing so well
he would be better off just staying
there leading up to the Travers
Stakes at the end of August.
“It’s more of a country-type
atmosphere,” the trainer noted.
“Orb spent more time outside his
stall than he could at the racetrack.
I was also thoroughly impressed
by Bruce’s whole operation and
his ideas on therapy. He guided
me through it all and shared with
me ideas on the best way for my
horses to succeed. On each sub-
sequent visit to Fair Hill I could
tell Orb was a happy horse. Every
time I see him, I’m more pleased.”
Travers Stakes
In the $1 Million Travers
Stakes at Saratoga in late August,
Orb was a formidable presence,
finishing third by less than a
length. It was the colt’s first race
in 77 days. The handsome bay colt
is slated to run in the Jockey Gold
Cup on September 28, and the big
enchilada, the $5 Million Breed-
ers’ Cup Classic on November 2.
McGaughey was so sold on
Fair Hill and its amenities that
he sent a dozen others, includ-
ing Grade-1 winners Imaging,
Hungry Island Boisterous, Hymn
Book, Reload, Puzzling and a
few nice two-year olds. They all
The grand experiment
worked so well that the unassum-
ing trainer convinced Orb’s own-
ers (Ogden Phipps and his cousin
Stuart Janney III) to purchase a
barn there. According to Fair Hill
Training Center manager Sally
Goswell, the deal will be settled
at the end of the year. The newest
division for McGaughey’s top-
flight thoroughbreds is slated to
be operational by early March.
The training center, which
opened in 1983, has had its share
of elite thoroughbreds over the
past decade including Derby win-
ners Barbaro, Animal Kingdom
and Orb, Belmont winner Union
Rags, Breeders’ Cup Turf winner
Better Talk Now and a string of
multiple stakes winners. In recent
years, Jackson’s therapy center
has become a smart choice for
horses from owners and trainers
not normally stabled at Fair Hill’s
18 barns.
Each part of Jackson’s
sprawling equine therapy center
plays a specific role in a horse’s
recovery and fitness training.
Among the therapeutic treatments
McGaughey’s horses utilize are
the hyperbaric oxygen chamber,
the AquaPacer, and the cold-wa-
ter spa that is one of the facility’s
most popular modalities. It is
used daily to treat a variety of
equine injuries, including tendon
sprains, ligament issues, bruised
shins, foot growth in the early
stages of laminitis, and for heal-
ing nasty cuts and abrasions.
“There are so many ameni-
ties, so many options for your
horses at Fair Hill,” McGaughey
noted. “Going there allows a
horse to be a horse again. I’ve
been watching how other horses
do after they leave Fair Hill.
They’ve run pretty good.”
(Continued on page 16)
Kentucky Derby 2013 winner Orb enjoys a snooze at Fair Hill Training Center in the arms of Jenn
Patterson, trainer Sug McGaughey’s assistant. Impressed with the varieties of therapy offered and
the opportunity to let horses be horses, Orb’s owners purchased a barn at Fair Hill that Patterson
will manage.
Photo credit: Bruce Jackson’s Fair Hill Equine Therapy Center
Vet for New Holland Auction is undaunted by
threats ... pg. 6
Slaughter-bound horse twice cheats death, finds
home ... pg. 8
Two year old is world’s speediest trotter ... pg. 4
Devin Ryan dominates Devon Fall Classic ... pg. 12
From New Bolton: Why is he so skinny? ... pg. 15
How the IRS views the horse business ... pg. 23
... and much more!
Pennsylvania Equine Council
Fall Newsletter ... pgs. 30 & 31
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