The 4-year-old gelding D’ Humerus, officially the first Thoroughbred to be admitted to the new Beyond The Wire aftercare program in Maryland, is taking very well to retirement from the racetrack, according to his new owner.
D’ Humerus, a New York-bred son of D’ Funnybone, resides at Country Hill Farm, a Westminster, Md., facility operated by Marsha Herbert along with Jimmy Coles and Jessica and Dan Schindler. Herbert, a Hunter instructor with about 25 years of experience in horse shows, said D’ Humerus has been a welcome addition.
“My two grandchildren love him—he’s so well-behaved,” Herbert said. “They take him out and graze him. They can groom him, too. He does have manners, and I’ll think he’ll make a nice show horse. He has a good head on his shoulders.”
D’ Humerus won once in 10 races—a maiden special weight event at Finger Lakes in upstate New York in September 2015 in his second career start. He ran his next eight races at Laurel Park in Maryland before his retirement.
Herbert, a former public school teacher who now is a member of the Carroll County Board of Education, said Country Hill regularly takes horses from the Foxie G Foundation, a Union Bridge, Md., farm that is accredited by the Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance and is one of two Maryland farms and two Pennsylvania farms that work closely with Beyond The Wire. D’ Humerus was sent to Foxie G, which is operated by Laurie Calhoun, upon his retirement from the track.
“I’m very good friends with Laurie, who told me she had a very nice horse who had been off the track for about 10 days,” Herbert said. “I looked at him and decided to take him. I think he’s going to do very well.”
Herbert, who has been working with horses for decades, said she enjoys working with and retraining retired Thoroughbreds and fully recognizes the need for aftercare.
“Thoroughbreds are wonderful,” she said. “If you get a good one, you can’t beat them. These guys are seasoned; they know what they’re doing. And they need second chances.”
Beyond The Wire, which was launched in May, is a partnership among the Maryland Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association, Maryland Jockey Club, Maryland Horse Breeders Associations, owners, and the local riding colony. As of late July, about 15 racehorses have been accepted into the program, which facilitates their transfer to accredited farms for rehoming or retraining in other disciplines.
By: Tom LaMarra