All hands on deck to help Suffolk Thoroughbreds


Off Track Thoroughbred, Golden Heartland. Source image.
Off Track Thoroughbred, Golden Heartland. Source image.

An outpouring of help from horsemen, volunteers and businesses has coalesced into “a remarkable hands on effort” to help ex-racehorse Thoroughbreds in the somber waning days of the Suffolk Downs racetrack.

So says Dawn Carey Kirlin, CANTER New England board member, who along with Kim Rigolini and many other CANTER volunteers, is working hard to make sure racehorses have some place to go when the track closes Oct. 4.

An Open House set for Saturday, Sept. 27 has attracted the support of businesses such as Dover Saddlery and Poulin Grain of Vermont, as well horse shippers, who will stand at the ready to help transport the lucky animals.

“Basically, everybody is trying to do everything they can to help,” Kirlin says.

Since the closure of the 79-year-old struggling racetrack was announced a week ago, the number of horses listed for sale has continued to grow, Kirlin says. Though horses are selling to new homes at a brisk pace, new horses are being added on almost as quickly as others are being sold, she explains.

“We still have over 100 horses listed for sale,” she says. “But, we’re also selling quickly. Last weekend we sold 20.”

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