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Tough and Good

Tough and Good, aka “Toughie,” is a six-year-old Thoroughbred gelding who was given to my good friend as a racehorse when he was four years old. He raced twice, receiving a win and a last place before being retired from racing. Toughie went straight from the track into his new career(s).

I began taking him to the park for trail rides and bringing him out to smaller local shows. The friend who gave me Toughie said he would never go English, so I borrowed a western saddle from a friend with the belief that Thoroughbreds are capable of anything.

Since he was still perfectly sound and fit, I decided to try and race him again over the winter. He ran three more times without much luck, and by March he was back to his retired life. My friends and I had been team penning and sorting for a few years, and most of the time I would use my older Thoroughbred, until he developed EPM and was no longer safe to ride. The other times I used a friend’s old pony, but it was never the same thing as having my own horse. I hoped that Toughie would be able to team pen, since he already had some western training, and sure enough, he is a natural. He really loves chasing the cows – somedays I think he wants to be a Quarter Horse!

Toughie is a really nice, hard-working horse. He has always been very lucky; he had good trainers at the track and a good home afterwards (if I say so myself)! Not all ex-racehorses get this lucky.     I can’t tell you how fortunate I feel to have such a great horse. I love so many different aspects of riding and he allows me to do them all. In the past two years he’s been shown English, in hunters and equitation, and also western. He has gone in at least a dozen hunter paces, raced five times, gone to the beach, team pens, sorts and won a half-mile flat point-to-point race.
—Janine Weber

Tough and Good (KY), 2002, g., Good and Tough—Mandalay Queen, by Real Courage.
Raced three years, 10-1-0-0, $4,533.