Godolphin Retraining Programme

During Royal Ascot, the sport of racing becomes fore fronted to the public with more than just racing enthusiasts spectating the week’s events. The increased number of spectators significantly helps the sport economically and in attracting more people to work within the Thoroughbred industry. However, increased levels of publicism also sadly results in increased welfare scrutiny on the sport. It is important at times like this to promote awareness on some of the amazing welfare strategies currently in place. Godolphin Lifetime Care is a prime example of such a strategy, and one that headlines the safeguarding of Thoroughbred horseracing. The retraining programme ensures all racehorses owned by Godolphin successfully fulfil additional roles after their racing careers. Godolphin is a global Thoroughbred breeding and racing operation and in turn host retraining centres in North America, Europe, Australia and Japan.

Hero Worship, qualified for the unaffiliated RoR dressage at Hickstead in 2013 with rider Abi.  ©GodolphinLifetimeCare

Godolphin Lifetime Care takes action to represent the versatility of Thoroughbred individuals. They strongly believe in the Thoroughbred’s potential to excel in alternative equine disciplines such as: eventing, dressage, hunting, polo, show jumping, pleasure riding and as companion horses.

Regiment, a 2010 gelding adopted by McKenzie in 2014 who desired to develop a young horse. The pair now ride with Olympic eventing veteran Bobby Costello.  ©GodolphinLifetimeCare

Equine welfare is the priority for the 1000+ employees and they ensure to provide the highest quality care to all occupants. After arrival, each horse is given relaxation time and the opportunity to socialise with other horses. This is to help the horses wind down after their racing careers and the relaxation time period is adjusted based on the horse’s character. Each retraining centre across the globe rehomes up to 20-25 horses per year. The adoption process is completely free of charge with regular updates being the primary form of payment. Some centres, such as the European one, fund staff visits so they can check in on some of the horses. This is to ensure welfare standards are consistently met and the partnership is still beneficial for both parties. There is a waiting list on the website which is currently accepting applications from candidates looking to adopt one of these wonderful animals. The organisation will only match riders/horses that they deem suitable and looking to excel in a similar equine sphere. Additionally, the website provides information on horses which are currently available and the type of homes they are looking for.

If you are interested, please visit: https://www.godolphinlifetimecare.com/jp/home