GEORGETOWN, Ky. (June 4, 2012) — On June 1, Old Friends, a thoroughbred retirement facility in Georgetown, hosted a welcome reception and press conference for media and fans to meet new retiree Rapid Redux.
The horse arrived at Old Friends on Wednesday, May 30.
Despite rainstorms and a drastic drop in temperature, about 35 journalists, photographers and fans — some from as far away as New York — came out to see the 6-year-old gelding that holds the modern North American record for consecutive wins by a Thoroughbred.
In January, Rapid Redux, a Kentucky bred, earned his 22nd victory at Laurel Park before he was retired from racing. He bested the 19-race win streaks set by Peppers Pride and 2010 Horse of the Year Zenyatta by three.
Claimed for $6,250 in 2010 by owner Robert Cole Jr. and trained by David Wells, Rapid Redux finished his career with 28 wins from 42 lifetime starts. His earnings total $361,609.
“I know so many of the horses we have here at Old Friends because I’m old,” laughed Old Friends founder and president Michael Blowen. “I saw them when they were still racing. But this horse has a young fan base, and we’re so thrilled to be able to have him here. He will be a huge draw for a new audience.”
Blowen noted that trainer David Wells, who had RR at his farm in Pennsylvania while connections decided his retirement plans, is planning a trip to the bluegrass soon to visit the gelding in his new home.
“After he got here, I called David to tell him that Rapid Redux’s new best friend was Gulch,” Bowen continued, noting that the Breeders’ Cup champion resides in the opposite paddock. “I said, ‘Did you ever think your horse would be friends with Gulch?’”
Blowen added a special thanks to Morrissey’s Horse Pullmans of Pawling, N.Y., for generously providing RR’s transportation from Pennsylvania.
“Rapid Redux was just a total professional,” Blowen said. “He hasn’t given us a moment of grief. He got off the trailer, went in his stall, ate some hay, drank some water and then spent about an hour looking out at Little Silver Charm (the Old Friends mascot who is a mini-Shetland cross) probably wondering what the heck he was!”
Fans are welcome to come and see Rapid Redux at the farm. Old Friends is open to the public daily, offering guided tours at 10 a.m., 1 p.m., and 3 p.m.
For more information about Rapid Redux or any of the retirees at Old Friends, call the farm at 1-502-863-1775.