Anyone travelling the 2000 miles from Grass Valley in California to La Crosse in Wisconsin in the next couple of weeks? If so you could help former harness racing mare Scarlet Lite have the best possible retirement.
Her Californian owner Donna Martin does not want to race the 6-year-old daughter ofagain and breeding is no longer an option.
So in stepped Susan Wellman, the founder and director of the American Standardbred Adoption Program.
“Donna contacted me and has been desperate for us to place the horse in a good home. She is adamant the horse gets a happy retirement and that’s why she came through us.
“I think she knows we have written contacts with our clients that they have to care for the animal and be accountable for its retirement – or else it is returned to us,” Wellman told Harnesslink.
Wellman said Martin had chosen her program, but in order to get a lifetime placement for her she needed between $1300 and $1500 to transport the former pacer from almost one side of the United States to the other.
“Donna is prepared to put up $500, but we have a shortfall. If there’s any carriers or people that could donate the difference needed that would be greatly appreciated.
“This horse deserves a happy retirement after all the effort she put in on the racecourse,” Wellman said.
“We have many other happy ending stories to tell and we want ‘Scarlet’ to be another one of them,” she added.
Scarlet Lite (1:57.3) raced 65 times between July 2, 2009 and February 18, 2011. She was trained by Robley Johnson and did all of her racing at Cal-Expo.
She won four times and placed on 16 occasions for $14,273.
She was no star but she deserves a quality future.
And that’s exactly what the American Standardbred Adoption Program gives all of their placements.
Established in 1993 they currently have 19 horses on their Wisconsin property and since its inception have had more than 1,000 horses on file.
By Duane RANGER (editor)
FACTS ABOUT THE AMERICAN STANDARDBRED ADOPTION PROGRAM:
No one working with ASAP Inc. receives a salary or commission.
All board members and officers are volunteers.
ASAP does not charge any racing owner or other owners for shipping their horses.
ASAP director's husband is a saint! He is the resident "veterinarian" who administers shots and gives special treatment to horses in need. He also is quite handy with building fences and shelters, and hauling horses. He can put on 1,100 miles in a 24 hour period without needing more than a "thank you!"
Veterinarians do not donate any of their time or services to ASAP, despite our pleas.
Farriers do not donate any of their time or services to ASAP, despite our pleas.
Attorneys do not donate any of their time or services to ASAP. ASAP legal fees cost $150 per hour. Irresponsibility on the part of an adopter at times makes legal actionun avoidable to protect the horse.
We do not give monetary refunds for horses - adopters pay a service fee at the time of adoption.
Veterinarian bills run into the thousands each year. Farrier bills vary, but average $100 to $150 for each trip to trim or shoe horses in care.
Horse's average length of stay before being adopted is three weeks for young, sound, well-trained horses, and one year for aged or injured horses.
Foster farms are encouraged to board horses at no cost to ASAP. When board is charged, ASAP's cost is $2 per day per horse. In the past our board bills have averaged $25 perday.
We have in the past received only $1,500 per year from harness racing organizations. The rest of our donations come solely from private parties, most of whom are owners of horses who donate a horse to us and believe in our program.
American Standardbred Adoption Program, Inc. was founded in 1994 by a small group of dedicated individuals and professionals who saw a need for a placement service for non-racing Standardbreds. This placement service honors and serves the people and horses within the harness racing industry around the country, with special emphasis on Standardbreds in Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Wisconsin, and Minnesota.The American Standardbred Adoption Program also serves as a rescue facility and sanctuary for abandoned, abused, or neglected horses of all breeds, and is listed by the Humane Society of the United States as a humane equine rescue organization. Horses of all other breeds are accepted into placement by ASAP, Inc.
A great deal of the American Standardbred Adoption Program's efforts center around educating young people about horsemanship and harness racing. Youth programs focus on youth at risk and youth with disabilities, offering ASAP's facilities on an ongoing basis for community service or schooling involving horsemanship and riding or driving.
The American Standardbred Adoption Program seeks only the most qualified homes in the hopes of obtaining permanent placement for each horse in its care. A contract must be signed by potential adopters as a prerequisite to acquiring a horse through our program. An adoption fee is required.
ASAP, Inc. is comprised entirely of volunteers that assist in every aspect of horse adoptions, from picking up a horse at the track or stabling facility at no cost to the donor,to office duties, to participation in exhibits, demonstrations, and rescue efforts nationwide
A Charitable Organization
ASAP is a charity that dedicates every waking moment to helping horses in need. Some horses don't need more than a different career - a dignified retirement - an alternative to racing when they aren't doing what they were bred to do. These horses are sound, younger, healthy, and easy to place. This makes up a majority of the donated horses. They are referred, picked up, boarded, and placed with qualified families within a short time of arriving at ASAP.
Then there are the rescue cases - the horses coming off feedlots - or the horses that come out of emergency situations where their immediate welfare is in grave danger. These horses need special attention and a special, carefully selected feeding plan.They require more intense veterinary treatment, and, usually more emergency veterinary treatment. Our veterinarians do not volunteer their time or their services to ASAP. Since 1994 ASAP has been responsible for payment in full for services rendered for everything from floating teeth to emergency calls for colic or other urgent situations. The veterinarians charge us for every interstate health certificate - every coggins test - and with no apologies. ASAP relies on adoption fees and individual donations to pay the bills.
The horses referred to ASAP are sometimes irreversibly lame. They have incurred hock injuries, stifle injuries, blindness, ankle injuries, EPM, or are sometimes simply aged. These horses are not turned away by ASAP, but are brought back to the farm for rehabilitation if it is possible. If rehabilitation is not possible, these horses become sanctuary horses. These horses live out their years at the ASAP farm and are loved, cared for, and given the best the world has to offer them simply because they are part of the ASAP family. These horses are funded by adoption fees generated by adoptions on healthy horses. They are also supported by sponsorship money and individual donations.
We simply do not receive enough monetary donations. The harness racing industry is indebted to the former racing champions who now find themselves in permanent retirement at ASAP, but to date this debt has not paid in full. Those of you who value our services to the standardbred and all other breeds can help by urging organizations to support the horses in care at ASAP. But you can make adifference yourself, today, right now, by saying the safety and well-being of these horses matters.
Susan Wellman, Director
Susan Wellman graduated from Illinois State University with a degree in Special Education, and is licensed to teach Pre-Kindergarten through Grade 12. Susan's passion involves combining her love for children with her love for the horses. During the past 17 years Susan has been a licensed treatment foster care home for children ages 6-17 who are diagnosed with everything from cognitive disabilities to Attention Deficit Disorder, to Autism Spectrum Disorder, Asperger's Syndrome, Conduct Disorder, and Oppositiona lDefiant Disorder. She has been foster mother to more than 37 children since1987.
Susan has taught Special Education in the local public school district at the elementary and middle school level. Her expertise is in the area of autism, but she loves all children with all levels of ability and designs individualized programs and lessons for the children using her beloved Standardbred horses. There are also other breeds of horses used in day camp programs and lessons, but Susan remains steadfast in her commitment to the Standardbred breed. She feels that their temperament is best-suited to children who have special needs. Susan is available for questions and consultation at email@example.com
Carmen Burth, Placement Coordinator
Carmen is the silent workhorse in North Branch who selflessly screens hundreds of applications a year and also does not receive nearly as much thanks as she should! She never complains and is always willing to go the extra mile to make sure these horses get a good home.
(1) American Standardbred Adoption Program demonstrates the Standardbred breed at the Midwest Horse Fairin Madison, WI, on April 16, 2010
(2) American Standardbred Adoption Program - 2010 Demonstration at Illinois Horse Fair:
(3) Scarlet Lite’s last victory at Cal Expo in the 10th race on November 13, 2010: