Special Awards at the Mega-Makeover


Special awards are sponsored by individuals, organizations, or companies to support their own initiatives and goals. The following awards have been confirmed for both competition years at the Mega-Makeover, thanks to the generous support of the award sponsors for a double committment. 


Thoroughbred Makeover Champion

Presented by: Churchill Downs

The Thoroughbred Makeover Champion is the overall winner of the event, chosen from the ten discipline winners by the judges from all disciplines. Judges will rank each horse from 10th -1st, with each place having a point value associated (1st ranking highest and worth 10 points and so on) and the horse accumulating the most points is crowned the Thoroughbred Makeover Champion. Judges are asked to consider which horse they believe is the best trained of the ten finalists

Cash prize: $10,000 to the winner

2021 Winner: Forthegreatergood (Laura Sloan)

2020 Winner: Thunderous Affair (Lindsey Partridge)

Past winners:

2019 Winner: Cowboy Swagger (Fallon Taylor)

2018 – Reloaded (Elisa Wallace)

2017 – Old Tavern (Charlie Caldwell)

2016 – Fairway King (Lauren Turner)

2015 – Soar (Lindsey Partridge)

2014 – Icabad Crane (Phillip Dutton)


People's Choice Award

Presented by: Achieve Equine

The People's Choice horse will be selected by text vote by the public. The People’s Choice winner will win the right to direct a donation to the equine-related 501(c)3 of their choosing. The RRP will hold $2,500 in escrow and will issue payment directly to the chosen charity.

2021 Winner: Icarius (Alexandra Beckstett)

2020 Winner: Legend's Hope (Jazz Napravnik)


Thoroughbred Makeover Ambassador Award

Sponsored by: Pyrois Media

Awarded to a Makeover trainer, official or volunteer who best embodies a spirit of teamwork, cooperation, sportsmanship and inclusivity. Individuals will be nominated for the Ambassador Award during the Thoroughbred Makeover at the info desk, and the RRP staff will select a winner from the pool of nominees.

2021 Winner: Dr. Shannon Reed

Honorable Mention: John Roberts

Past winners:

2019 Winners: Alyssa Myatt and Peg Sorenson

2018 – Jen Ruberto

2017 – Kyle Rothfus

2016 – Michelle Craig

2015 – Olivia Dixon


Top Kentucky-Bred Horse Award

Sponsored by: Kentucky Thoroughbred Owners & Breeders

Presented to the highest placing KY-bred horse.  Prize will be split in the event of a tie.

$6,500 cash prize

2021 Winners (tie): Fleet Stepper (Hillary Irwin), Icarius (Alexandra Beckstett), Ramses (Benjamin Lynch), Super Terrific (Abbey Blair), War Candy (Muri Triantafilo)

2020 Winners (tie): Canton Comet (Samantha Fawcett), Czraina Maria (Jessica Frederick), Still Dreaming (Charles Hairfield), Thunderous Affair (Lindsey Partridge), Zapper (Cameron Sadler)

2019 Winners (tie): Fifth Ace (Alison O'Dwyer), Diplomat (Sara Katz), Great Reward (Buck Schott), and Sanimo (Rosie Napravnik)



Top Louisiana-Bred Horse Award

Sponsored by: Louisiana Thoroughbred Breeders Association

Awarded to the highest-placed Makeover horse bred in Louisiana. Winnings will be split in the event of a tie.

Cash prize: $5,000

2021 Winner: Kubo Cat (Alison O'Dwyer)

2020 Winner: Careless Whisper (Brooklyn Timmons)

Past winners:

2019 Winner: Tenpin Sugar (Katherine Deichmann)

2018 – Interactif Spy (Morgan Boyer)



Top Maryland-Bred Horse Award

Sponsored by: Judy Hartman's Copper Beech Stables

Awarded to the highest-placed Makeover horse bred in Maryland.

Cash prize: $3,000

2021 Winner: Forthegreatergood (Laura Sloan)

2020 Winner: Legend's Hope (Jazz Napravnik)

Past winners:

2019 Winner: Silken Lady (Harry Caldwell)

2018 – Better Wise Up (Johannah Stahl)



Empire State Success Story Top New York-Bred Award

Sponsored by: New York Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association, New York Racing Association, and New York Thoroughbred Breeders Inc.

Awarded to the highest-placed Makeover horse bred in New York.

Cash prize: $2,500

2021 Winners (Tie): Parson Brown (Mandy Weissmann) and Ten Plagues (Jessica Frederick)

2020 Winners (Tie): Aussie Prayer (Raechel Ramsey) and Elbow Room (Helen Pianca)

Past winners:

2019 Winners (Tie): Regina Christina (Lindsey Partridge)
and Ouija (Courtney Asdourian)

2018 – Miss Classy (Jade Wirick) and Looking My Way (Tik Maynard)



Top California-Bred Horse Award

Sponsored by: Georgia B. Ridder Foundation in honor of the work done by After the Finish Line

Awarded to the highest-placed Makeover horse bred in California

Cash prize: $2,500

2021 Winner: Papa Al (Jody Busch)

2020 Winner: Park Hill Diamond (Jess Ramirez)

Past winners:

2019 Winner: Highly Cynical (Tom Mansmann)

2018 – Baker's Acclaim (Taylor Whipple)



Top Pennsylvania-Bred Horse Award

Sponsored by: Pennsylvania Horse Breeders Association

Awarded to the highest-placed Makeover horse bred in Pennsylvania. Prize will be split in the event of a tie. 

Cash prize: $2,500

2021 Winner: Aiken Prep (Emma Ayre)

2020 Winner (tie): Barwin (Sara Kolenda), Monba Number Five (Tessa Elton), Poised for Action (Mike Leverett)

Past winners:

2019 Winner: Fairly Obvious (Lindsey Partridge)

2018 – BK's Angus (Lauren Lindsay)



Pennsylvania HBPA Award

Sponsored by: Pennsylvania Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association & New Start

Awarded to any horse that came through the PA HBPA New Start program or were obtained from a Penn National based trainer and wins or places second or third in a Makeover division.

Cash prizes

$1000 for 1st, $500 for 2nd, and $500 for 3rd. Trainers must declare eligibility at time of entry and PA HBPA will confirm eligibility.

Contact Lauren Zagnit at (717) 645-6615 for questions or eligibility requirements.

Past winners:

2019 Winner: Fairly Obvious (Lindsey Partridge)

2018 – Miss Classy (Jade Wirick)



Wild and Wonderful Awards

Sponsored by: Charles Town HBPA 

$1,000 to any division winner and $500 to second or third placements. To be eligible, horse must have made a minimum of 6 starts at Charles Town OR one start at Charles Town and be a West Virginia-Bred. 

Cash prizes

$1,000 to any division winner,  $500 to any second and third place finisher.

2021 Winner: Tip Top Diva (Dakotah Rowel)

Third Place: Ice Kaufy (James Wagner)

Past Winners:

2019 Winner: Furaha (Susan Deal)


Delaware Park Horse Aftercare Initiative Special Award

Sponsored by: CANTER Delaware, Delaware Park Racing, Delaware Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association, and MidAtlantic Horse Rescue

Awarded to the three highest placing Makeover horses that raced at Delaware Park. Eligible horses must have either been listed through CANTER Delaware, retired from racing at Delaware Park, or raced at least 50% of their career at Delaware Park.

Cash prizes

$500 to top finisher, $300 to second place finisher, and $200 to third place finisher.

2021 Winner: Thin Spaces (Susan Thomas)
Second Place: Spitfire Annie (Amy Bowers)
Third Place: Silver Nina (Karem Carski)

2020 Winner: David’s Slingshot (Megan Montgomery)
Second Place: Peyton Place (Alyssa Kelly)
Third Place: Abatement (Reese Dorsey)

Past winners:

2019 Winners (tie): Royal Flame (Gayle Cook) and American Colossus (Gail Szezecinksi)

2018 – Lovely Lad (Alison Chubb)
Second Place: Love the Beat (Emily Johnson)
Third Place: Here Comes Trouble (Anna Cox)



Sponsored by: CANTER USA

Awarded to the highest-placed Thoroughbred Makeover horse that was acquired thorough a CANTER listing.

CANTER affiliates assist racing owners and trainers by listing their horses for sale. Some CANTER affiliates take ownership of vulnerable horses for rehabilitation and training before rehoming.

Cash prize: $1,000

$500 and trophy cooler to highest-placed Makeover horse that was acquired through a CANTER listing; $300 to the second highest-placed CANTER horse; $200 to the third highest-placed CANTER horse. Money will be split in the event of a tie. 

2021 Winner: Dantu (Alex Tyson)
Second Place: Wicked Soprano (Adriana Nannini)
Third Place: Sobeit Sylvia (Shanin Quashie)

2020 Winners (tie): Czraina Maria (Jessica Frederick), Thunderous Affair (Lindsey Partridge)
Third Place: Robbie Jones (Kelly Giunta)

Past winners:

2019 Winner: Royal Flame (Gayle Cook)
Second Place: Noble Apollo (Timothy Brock)
Third Place: Long Legacy (Melanie Voght)

2018 Winner – Tripple Reward (Megan Waelti)
Second Place: B's Honey (Sarah Coltrin)
Third Place: Tanyas Pride (Courtney Asdourian)

2017 – Bowdrie (Lindsey Partridge)


TAA Graduate Award

Sponsored by: Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance

$1,500 cash prize will be divided between the rider of the highest-placed TAA horse and the TAA-accredited organization that rehomed or is in the process of retraining that horse. Eligible horses must have been adopted from or currently with a TAA-accredited organization.

Cash prize: $1,500

2021 Winner: Parson Brown (Mandy Weissmann)

2020 Winners (tie): Aussie Prayer (Raechel Ramsey), Thunderous Affair (Lindsey Partridge) 

Past winners:

2019 Winner: Fairly Obvious (Lindsey Partridge)

2018 Winner – Okie Jazz (Nicole St. Martin)


USPC Award in Memory of E. Marilyn Searle

Sponsored by: Beverly Strauss and MidAtlantic Horse Rescue in memory of E. Marilyn Searle 

Presented to the highest placing Pony Club Member in good standing.  Prize will be split in the event of a tie.

Cash prizes

$750 and trophy cooler to first highest placed Pony Club Member
$250 and trophy cooler to second highest placed Pony Club Member

2021 Winner: Jarir (McKenna O'Neil)

Second Place: Zeppelin Ride (Amara Baker)

2020: Winner: Cleave (Ashley Tabor)

Second Place: Wacky Pal (Kalin MacQueen)

Past Winners:

2019 Winner: Ms. Mary Joe (Grace Heepke)
Second Place: Henny Strike (Susan Thomas)


Iron Horse Award

Sponsored by: MidAtlantic Horse Rescue

Awarded to the highest-scoring Makeover “iron horse” — those horses who were foaled in 2010 or earlier.

Cash prize: $1,000

$500 and trophy cooler awarded to the highest-placed amateur/professional
$500 and trophy cooler awarded to the highest-placed junior

2021 Winners: Aiken Prep (Emma Ayre)

2020 Winners: Page McKenney (Jazz Napravnik)

Past Winners

2019 Winners: Hula Pie (Michelle Houpt), I Can And I Will (Meghan Crout), Wasted (Franny Galvin-Hynes *Junior Winner)
2018 Winner: Father Mick (Ashley Lilley)
2018 Junior Winner: Shraded Edge (Evelyn Jones)


Top-Placed Horse from Arapahoe Park

Sponsored by: Arapahoe Park

Awarded to the top-placed horse that ran at Arapahoe Park.

Cash prize: $500

2021 Winner: Itybityquikasakity (Britany Chism)

2020 Winners (tie): Mr. Park (Brit Vegas), Ms. Battlefield (Autumn Sorensen)

Best Conditioned Award

Sponsored by: Nina Bonnie

A trophy halter and $200 will be awarded to the best conditioned horse in each division.

2021 Winners:
Barrel Racing: Wolfzing (Samantha Kamen)
Competitive Trail: Parson Brown (Mandy Weissmann)
Dressage: Wildwood Fury (Jasmine Slater)
Eventing: Independent Son (Nicole Scherrer)
Field Hunter: The Sheik of Araby (Gina Gans)
Freestyle: Papa Al (Jody Busch)
Polo: Ramses (Benjamin Lynch)
Ranch Work: Top Secret Indy (Danielle Palermo)
Show Hunter: Avail Ekati (Emily Castrenze)
Show Jumper: Aiken Prep (Emma Ayre)

2020 Winners:
Barrel Racing: Luvuryan (Tammy Botsford)
Competitive Trail: Careless Whisper (Brooklyn Timmons)
Dressage: Little Acorn (Leah Marks)
Eventing: She's A Fine Line (Jordan Pruiksma)
Field Hunter: Zapper (Cameron Sadler)
Freestyle: Nucks (Megan Hems)
Polo: That's My Bertie (Willowbrook Polo)
Ranch Work: Aussie Prayer (Raechel Ramsey)
Show Hunter: Black Tavish (Debra Ward)
Show Jumper: Mr. Park (Brit Vegas)

2019 Winners:
Barrel Racing: Liz's Luck (Kendall McKibben)
Competitive Trail: Somebody's Beau (Kate Coldren)
Dressage: Negu (Kylie Cook)
Eventing: Kitten's Beauty (Caroline Homes)
Field Hunter: Bombarito (Brit Vegas)
Freestyle: Edger Jones (Kasey Mix)
Polo: Lady Driven (Andrea Groubert)
Ranch Work: Include the Best (Beth Young)
Show Hunter: Kid Chrome (Robin Hannah)
Show Jumper: Remember Gizmo (Kedal Lehari)


Thoroughbred Charities of America Award

Sponsored by: Thoroughbred Charities of America

A special gift basket will be awarded to the rider of the highest placing horse in each division that was acquired through a 2018 or 2019 TCA grant recipient organization.

2021 Winners:
Barrel Racing: World of Honor (Ashley Bump)
Competitive Trail: Dantu (Alex Tyson)
Dressage: Congrats Cat (Savannah Kennedy)
Eventing: Roziere (Virginia Cole)
Freestyle: Papa Al (Jody Busch)
Ranch Work: Dantu (Alex Tyson)
Show Hunter: Jersey Fresh (Caitlan Meara)
Show Jumper: Jardin de Giverny (Sarah Laderman)

2020 Winners:
Barrel Racing: Nucks (Megan Hems)
Competitive Trail: Thunderous Affair (Lindsey Partridge)
Dressage: Appointment (Catherine Frank)
Eventing: Ragnar Lothbrok (Tayah Fuller)
Field Hunter: You Betcha (Karen Benson)
Freestyle: Thunderous Affair (Lindsey Partridge)
Ranch Work: Aussie Prayer (Raechel Ramsey)
Show Hunter: Eloquent Ethel (Stephanie Framer)
Show Jumper: You Betcha (Karen Benson)

2019 Winners:
Competitive Trail: Wally K (Monique Cameron) - Galloping Out
Dressage: Frank's Gift (Lauren Burke) - New Vocations Racehorse Adoption Program
Eventing: Jersey Justice (Rhiannon Rasmussen) - Thoroughbred Athletes, Inc.
Field Hunters: Frank's Gift (Lauren Burke) - New Vocations Racehorse Adoption Program
Freestyle: Sterling Thunder (Meghan Edelman) - Maker's Mark Secretariat Center
Show Hunter: Zinziblanco (TEAM MAHR Zinziblanco) - Mid-Atlantic Horse Rescue
Show Jumper: Jersey Justice (Rhiannon Rasmussen) - Thoroughbred Athletes, Inc.


Turning For Home Award

Sponsored by: Turning For Home

Trophy cooler and gift basket awarded to the highest-placed Thoroughbred Makeover horse that was acquired through Pennsylvania Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association’s Turning For Home program directly, or from one of its partner farms. 

2021 Winner: Gumdrop’s Chiclet (Kaitlin Hartford)

2020 Winner: D'yer Mak'er (Kristina Aaron)

Past winners:

2019 Winner: Henny Strike (Susan Thomas)

2018 – BK's Angus (Lauren Lindsay)

2017 – Here Comes Adri (Lindsey Partridge)

Previous Special Awards

New Vocations Award

Sponsored by: New Vocations Racehorse Adoption Program

New for 2018; trophy coolers awarded to the top-scoring junior, amateur, and professional mounted on New Vocations graduates. 

Past Winners:

2018 Winners:

Top Junior: Toni The Tigress (Amber Longreen)
Top Amateur: Win Chance (Marissa Mahoney)
Top Professional: Alum (Leandra Cooper)

Roses of Sharon Memorial Award

Sponsored by: Jen Ruberto and the Ruberto Family

New for 2018; the Roses For Sharon Memorial Award was created to honor the lives of Sharon Ruberto and Rose Arbogast. To be eligible for the award, a horse must have begun and ended their racing careers with the same owner, trainer or both on record. They need not to have had stayed with those connections the entire time (could have been claimed or sold) but they must have returned to them. Minimum of at least 5 starts.

Cash prize: $1,000

Past Winners:

2018 Winner: Big Ralph (Alison Wilaby)

Log In/Log Out


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.


Don't have an account yet? Register Now!

Sign in to your account