FINAL TBMakeover 1200x220 TCA2

At this time next week, you all will be loading up to head to Kentucky. We have a very busy week ahead of us and we’re looking forward to welcoming you all to the Horse Park. We hope once you get there that you will take it all in and enjoy the results of the hard work you’ve each put into your horses, regardless of the competition.

Ride Times, Ring Schedules, and Stabling Assignments are all on the website and FINAL.

I understand that some of you may have issues with your stall assignments and I will do my best to rectify those for you, but I needed to get this info out to everyone before I can go back and spend time fixing stall assignments.

Ride times have been audited multiple times to resolve conflicts and give each of you the best possible experience we can. We have a VERY packed schedule and appreciate you all working with us to get everyone accommodated and keep rings running on time.


What follows is information that is essential to your week at the event running smoothly. Please read it thoroughly, and consider printing a copy or storing it somewhere handy on your phone.

Entry fees are due today, September 25th. We will be sending reminders to those of you have not paid and will sort out the additional layover fees for those of you who still need to be billed for them. You will not receive your packet at check-in without payment of any balance due.

TONIGHT 9/25 7PM EST: The Makeover is 9 Days Away and I’m FREAKING OUT.

Freaking out isn't fun. Kirsten and Allison answer all your questions and talk you off the ledge. Paper bag and wine not included. Via Facebook Live in the Makeover Trainers’ Group

Wednesday, 10/3 6PM: Competitor’s Briefing and Welcome Reception Sponsored by Horseware, Covered Arena

Light refreshments will be served. Attendance is strongly encouraged.

Arrival at the Park and Parking

There are no restrictions on how late or early you may come and go at the park, though note that depending on the time, there may not be anyone available to assist you. The horse park will charge $15 per vehicle for parking for the duration of the event. Please note the identified areas on the linked map for general parking, trailer-in parking, competitor day parking, and dropped trailer parking. Trailers and vehicles are welcome to pull up to the barns to load and unload but are not to remain parked around the barns for extended periods and risk parking tickets from KHP Police.

When arriving at the horse park, come through the main entrance and proceed down to the traffic circle. Go around the circle and exit onto Cigar Lane. Follow Cigar Lane, you’ll see the KY Dept. of Agriculture shack on your right and should be prepared to stop there and show health paperwork if flagged down. Continue on to the stop sign and turn right on Nina Bonnie and go up the hill. Barns 1-4 will be on your right and 10-16 will be on your left. Continue up the hill and barns 5-7 will be on the right at the stop sign, continue up Nina Bonnie past the Rolex Arena for ship in parking. The leading number in your stall assignment indicates which barn you’re in (1047= Barn 10, 702= Barn 7, etc)

Please take note of your stall assignment and do not put your horse in a stall that is not assigned to you. Your stalls will be tagged with index cards with your name on them. If you arrive at your stall and are unable to put your horse in it for whatever reason, please call or text Allison Howell at 571-274-1451.

Venue Map

Farrier and Vet

Farrier is Jeremiah Zimmer (254-595-2700). He is on call for the week of the event and on site Wednesday- Saturday in the Farrier’s Shelter adjacent to Barns 8-12.

Hagyard Equine Medical Institute: 859-255-8741. Hagyard is located directly across from the main entrance to the park and will have vets on call Monday, Tuesday, Saturday, and Sunday and on site Wednesday-Friday. Call the number above for both emergencies and PPEs.


  • The horse park requires 30 day (out of state) or 12 month (in state) health certificates and current (12 month) negative coggins. Neither the Horse Park or the event require proof of any vaccinations.
  • Stabling supplies (hay, grain, feed, bedding, and stall mats) can be ordered through Dever. 859-233-9702. Round Pens/Paddocks are sold out, but if you have one and are no longer coming, please remember to cancel your reservation!
  • Golf carts can be rented through Cunningham. 859-233-7921. Note that the Horse Park prohibits the use of off-road type vehicles (4-wheelers, dirt bikes, etc).

Note that the horse park does not provide any stabling equipment to you. No hoses, wheel barrows, pitch forks- NOTHING, and your stalls are concrete with no mats. Plan accordingly! You may bed your stalls with your choice of bedding and do not have to strip your stalls before you leave.

Rider Check–In/ Info Booth

Rider check-in will open at 9AM Tuesday the 2nd at the information booth in the northeast corner of the covered arena facing the schooling rings. Here you will provide your health documents, sign a waiver (save time, print and sign) and pick up your packet, saddle pad, and completion ribbon. We will have a nice winners’ circle area set up outside the covered arena to make sure to take a moment to get a picture of you and your horse with your ribbon(s). Trainers will receive one commemorative saddle pad each based on the preference indicated (AP, Dressage, or Western) on their initial applications back in January.

Your packet will include your competitor numbers, stall card, a copy of the venue map/ schooling schedule. While you’re here, grab a copy of the event program and horse sale catalog. Depending on the discipline, copies of course maps will be available at the info booth as well.


Competitor Numbers

You will receive your numbers in your packet at check-in. Green numbers identify horses that are for sale. We are providing hook-style bridle numbers and back numbers. Eventers and Field Hunters will receive number inserts for pinny holders. Horses should wear bridle numbers at all times when they are outside of their stalls.  All riders should present their horses in competition wearing a back number-Dressage riders may present with a bridle number only as they would traditionally.


The document at this link identifies what venues are open for schooling at what times. Please follow this schedule strictly and do not invite yourself to use venues that are not identified as available. For schooling over fences on Wednesday, we will not organize time frames at particular fence heights however we will monitor the number of horses in these arenas to ensure safety. If you change fences, please put them back how you found them. Competitors may consider shipping to Masterson Station Park for cross country schooling opportunities.

Horse Sale

You’ve done your part by creating your online sale ad. We will produce a printed catalog with loads of resources for successful shopping, including where and when to watch sale horses compete and who to call for a PPE. You may arrange for potential riders to try your horses at any time at your discretion but please make sure they have signed a waiver (they will receive a red and white wristband when they complete a waiver at the info desk). Remember that RRP is not a party to your transaction and that you or your horse’s owner establish price and approve buyers, not RRP. We will also have a boiler plate Bill of Sale but encourage trainers to utilize sale documentation that protects the their horses with the use of first right of refusal and Please do remember to report your sales via hose status update in Manage My Entries. This information is kept private and is key in measuring the success of the Horse Sale as well as for market research.


Thursday Evening Wine and Cheese Reception in the Sponsor Fair 5-6PM sponsored by Dechra

Friday Evening Barnwide Potluck and Stall Decorating Contest 5-7PM. Enter the stall decorating contest on the sign-up sheet at the info desk by 4PM Thursday, to be included in the judging.

Saturday Finale and Celebration goes all day and wraps up with a southern catered dinner and live music. (See ticketing below)

Please note that Sunday Polo has been cancelled. Tailgate tickets have been fully refunded.


The winners of each discipline will have blood drawn upon exiting the arena from the finale. Random drug testing will also take place. You may read up on restricted and prohibited substances here.


Scoring is “live” in that scores are posted to the website as they’re completed in the show office.

Finale, Awards, and Prize Money

The top 5 horses in each discipline at the completion of scoring Friday will return to compete in the Finale Saturday and MUST attend the Finale Briefing in the Club Lounge in the Covered Arena Friday evening, tentatively scheduled for 7PM. We will not be contacting you to remind you to come but will make an announcement if the time of this briefing changes. Please keep an eye on scoring to determine if you will be in the top 5.

Ribbons and prizes for places 1-10, Top Junior, and Top Amateur will be presented at the completion of each discipline in the finale. All riders receiving ribbons should be prepared for mounted awards at the covered arena in gate 5 minutes prior to completion of their respective discipline. Again. We will not be contacting you to remind you to come. The division winners will return for America’s Most Wanted Thoroughbred voting at the completion of the finale.

Most special awards winners will be determined throughout the finale. There will be a special award tracker on our website for standings, riders are encouraged to keep track of whether or not their horse is in the running for any special awards and we will advise on scheduling for special awards presentations.

Team Competition will also have an awards ceremony with ribbons 1-10, trophy coolers, and prizes. Time for team awards is TBA.

Prize money checks will be available Sunday morning. Checks in excess of $600 will require a completed W9 prior pick up/mailing.


The only ticketed portion of the Thoroughbred Makeover is the Finale on Saturday and there are two ticket options; General Admission ($10), and General Admission with Dinner ($30).

Makeover Trainers and Makeover Teams receive TWO General Admission with Dinner tickets per entry (i.e.; one horse=two tickets, two horses=4 tickets).

RRP Members receive one General Admission ticket, so Makeover Trainers and Team members are eligible for this discount as well.

New for this year: Tickets will NOT be included in your check in packet nor will they be automatically sent to you. You MUST RSVP to the finale/ purchase any additional finale tickets you may need via Eventbrite and then Eventbrite will EMAIL you your tickets.

You will receive your complimentary tickets by the use of discount codes, (access here) which, when entered at the top of the ticket selection page in EventBrite, will unlock free ticket options. Note that there are separate discount codes for Trainers, Team Captains, and Members and that Eventbrite does not allow the use of multiple discount codes in a transaction. So you may need to complete more than one transaction to take full advantage of your ticket discounts.

Discount codes are valid for one use only. Please do not share your unused codes… that’s stealing.

Discipline Specific Notes, Patterns, and Course Maps

Patterns and tests are being added here this week as they are available. Courses will be posted in the Hunter/Jumper complex for those arenas by Wednesday evening. Other maps will be available at the info desk upon check in.

We strongly encourage competitors to review the rules and formats of their divisions prior to showing up at the in-gate. Below are some notes and clarifications.

  • Barrels will have their two runs on Thursday morning with a break in between runs while the Polo division runs in the Covered Arena. Your Barrel Racing Steward, Laura Weincek, will be at the Wendesday evening competitor briefing and will want to know if you will be running from the left or the right.
  • Competitive Trail Horses are not to come within 100 feet of trail obstacles prior to competition. Competitors may inspect the trail course on foot by Wednesday afternoon. Opportunities to walk the course with a Competitive Trail Official are as follows:
    • Thursday 8:30 to 10AM with course designer Nicole Wood
    • Thursday 4-5PM with judge Ashley Gruber

If you have any questions about appropriate equipment in Competitive Trail, please check with the officials at the competitor briefing Wednesday evening.

  • Dressage will remain in a standard arena. Demo rides are scheduled shortly after your test in a separate arena with a different judge. Demo rides are four minutes and a timer will start from your salute upon entering the arena. A whistle will blow to indicate that time is up and judging has ended. Music is not included in demo rides and riders should be sure to show all three gates in both directions. Final halts are not required in the demo. We have a VERY full schedule in Dressage still and may choose to tighten it up once more if more people scratch. We will notify you if we decide to make a change that will impact ride times.
  • Eventing Cross Country maps will be available at check-in and the SJ course will be posted ringside. Cross Country will be open to walking only, no schooling. Note that you have not been given an assigned show jump time. Competitors are expected to proceed immediately from Cross Country to Show Jumping. We have not designed this schedule to allow for you to go back to the barn and have a change of attire.
  • Field Hunters will gather promptly at 7:30AM Friday for an optional Stirrup Cup. New for this year, the Mock Hunt and Under Saddle have been split into three groups and given ride times. The individual tests will start at 11AM following the completion of the last Mock Hunt group and will run based off a drawn order of go. Competitors are not obligated to remain in the competition area while their group is not being judged. Competitors MUST wear their number inserted in a pinny holder AS WELL AS a bridle number. The steward will tell you which side to wear your bridle number on. This is to help ensure accurate judging during the Mock Hunt.
  • Freestyle competitors who will ride to music must drop it off on either a CD or USB thumb drive at check-in. Please do not go to the announcer 10 minutes before your ride and ask him to play a YouTube video from your phone. Your music should be clearly labeled with a competitor number and include any instructions for track numbers and start times. Riders must notify the steward when they arrive at warm up of any disruptive events that will take place in their routine, including use of firearms, loud noise, animals, and pyrotechnics. Your judged 5 minutes starts when you raise your hand to the judges (this will also signal the start of your music). Competitors who indicated the need for set up time have been allotted a total of 3 minutes for set up and tear down of props.
  • Show Hunter courses will be posted at the Stonelea ring by Wednesday morning. Hunter riders will do both over fences trips and under saddle within their designated group at the assigned time. The in-gate steward will keep a rotation of three horses within the class for the over fences trips.
  • Show Jumper courses will be posted at the Claiborne ring by Wednesday morning. Riders should enter the arena and salute the judges. At the sound of the whistle they will proceed immediately into their flat pattern. and then continue on to the jumping phases (grid, course, jump off) without stopping.
  • Ranch Work will have a 20-minute course inspection of trail obstacles at Noon before the start of the division. Competitors will first ride AQHA Ranch Riding Pattern 1 and the proceed immediately into their Ranch Trail pattern.
    • Show Jumpers will start at 4PM Friday and will be judged in a rotation based on the posted order of go. First horses will be presented in the flat and round one portion of the test and then we will rotate through in the same order to present the horses in the gymnastic and jump off portion.
    • Show Hunters will start at 5PM and be judged in the same group with a rotation at the in-gate for each over fences trip.


We’re still seeking donations for our Silent Auction and would be so appreciative of items such as art, gifts/gift baskets, services, collectibles, etc. Find out more about donating here.


Generously organized by Allison Howell, we’ll be offering a tack sale adjacent to the check in desk in the Covered Arena. Have used but clean a serviceable tack that you’d like to get rid of and too lazy to list online or take to the consignment shop? Bring it with you and donate it to the tack sale. We’ll issue you a tax receipt and take care of the rest. Proceeds will benefit RRP.


Horse Country Tours welcomes you and your friends and family to the Bluegrass with discounted rates on all of their regular tours! We encourage you to explore the iconic farms and institutions in central Kentucky, it really is a phenomenal experience.

Use code RRPTRAIN18 for 100% of the ticket cost for ONE $20 ticket - valid through October 8, 2018

Use code RRP18FAM for 20% off ticket price - valid through October 8, 2018

For more information or to book, visit or see them in their booth (#72) in the sponsor fair.

“Unique Experience” tours excluded




We need all the hands we can get! Volunteers get a shirt, hat, lunch, and access to the Saturday Finale with dinner. Sign up and meet the team! New for this year, we’ll have a “Give a Volunteer a Break” sign up at the info desk. Put your name down if you’re willing to put in an hour here or there and we’ll give you a call if we need a hand for a bit.


Thoroughbred Makeover Website

Competitors Section of TB Makeover Site (restricted, must be logged in to access)

Manage My Entries  Report Withdrawals

Entry List- Click to view your horse’s public profile, including ride times and stall assignments. Regular Entries and Team Entries.

RRP Website

RRP Facebook Page

Makeover Public Facebook Group

Makeover Trainers Closed Facebook Group

TB Makeover Volunteers Facebook Group

TB Makeover Graduates for Sale or Adoption Facebook Group

Instagram: @RetiredRacehorseProject

Twitter: @RRP_TBMakeover


The RRP staff will be departing for Kentucky Sunday, September 30th. Once we hit the road we will continue to monitor our phone and emails though may not be able to respond immediately. We will get back to you as quickly as possible!

RRP Office:

410-798-5140 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Monday- Friday, 9AM to 5PM EST

Facebook messages are not a reliable way to reach RRP staff.

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Building Bridges to Second Careers...Increasing Demand for Thoroughbreds
(410) 798-5140

Mailing Address:
3357 Hazelwood Road, Edgewater, MD 21037

 Retired Racehorse Project is a 501(c)3 charitable organization.


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