The Equiery congratulates the board of the Thoroughbred Alliance™ Show Series on accomplishing its original mission – and salutes the directors for making the brave and bold decision to fold the Series.
You read that right. “Brave and bold decision to fold the series.”
TASS concluded its 2016 season on September 10 on Maryland’s Eastern Shore at Breezy Run Farm. In this, its final series, 106 competitors participated in seven TASS member shows located in Maryland and Virginia.
Founded in 2012 to promote the second careers of Thoroughbreds from the race track, TASS did this by creating a horse show series just for Thoroughbreds and providing year-end awards. It was the only Thoroughbred-only horse show series in the country.
A corollary mission was to raise money for 501c3 Thoroughbred rescue and aftercare organizations, including CANTER, Foxie G Foundation, MidAtlantic HorseRescue, Thoroughbred Retirement Foundation (TRF), and Our Mims Retirement Haven. Mission accomplished, with over $50,000 to date.
The founders and board members of TASS were visionaries. They were not ahead of their time – they were on the vanguard. They led the way: Fran Burns (Boxwood Farm, Monkton). Georganne Hale, Bev Strauss, Karin De Francis, Carrie Everly, Sue Smith and The Equiery’s own Jennifer Webster.
Because of the foundation these women laid with TASS, the number of competitions (and thus opportunities) specifically for the off-track Thoroughbred has skyrocketed. TASS validated the viability of Thoroughbred-only divisions at hunter/jumper shows As the recent Thoroughbred Makeover in Kentucky illustrates, interest continues to grow and the Take2 Second Career Thoroughbred Program offers Thoroughbred classes at over 250 shows throughout the county.
These women are committed to creating more quality competition opportunities for the Off-Track Thoroughbred – they absolutely succeeded! Peruse the prize list of virtually any hunter/jumper show in the country and you will find at least one Thoroughbred division. If you compete your Thoroughbred in these divisions, you can thank these women for helping to launch the national movement to make that happen!
As a result of the proliferation of Thoroughbred divisions at hunter/jumper shows, the necessity for a Thoroughbred-only horse show series no longer exists. Mission accomplished! These women can proudly check this off their “to do” lists!
In the opinion of this publisher, it takes a great deal of self-discipline, honesty and courage to avoid the trap of continuing on with something because of past successes, regardless of current needs – to quit while your on top! Bravo to these women for having the guts to end with a strong finish, rather than to just peter out.
TASS will continue to operate as a trademarked organization committed to raising funds for aftercare.