Day At The Track

Anvil Raider N now ready for second career

02:46 AM 23 May 2014 NZST
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Anvil Raider N, harness racing Anvil Raider N, harness racing
Anvil Raider N
Photo by Deb Schiff
Anvil Raider N
The winningest pacer of 2013, Anvil Raider N, was donated by his owner, Will Johnson of Monroe, MI this past February to New Vocations Racehorse Adoption Program. Anvil Raider N won 23 of 40 races last year before mandatory retirement at age 15. The gelding's regular driver, Ronnie Wrenn Jr., also the winningest driver in 2013, suggested that Johnson send the horse to New Vocations.

Anvil Raider N arrived at the Laurelville, OH Standardbred training facility on February 14th and began his under saddle training with New Vocations trainer, Jennifer Daniels.

The classy New Zealand bred took to riding with no problems. Standing just under 15.2 hands, most people are surprised that this little horse was the same horse that was quite a handful on the track. There are no winner's circle photos of any of his record 23 wins last year because Anvil Raider was notorious for not standing for win photos.

"Fortunately, that extreme adrenalin rush following a race isn't a factor in the next chapter of their lives," said Standardbred Program Director Winnie Nemeth. "Once these horses relax and learn to carry a rider, all that tension usually melts away. Within six weeks my ten year old daughter was riding and driving him!"

Anvil Raider N was able to show off his new skills and promote the breed and harness racing at Equine Affaire in Columbus, OH this past April. He performed in the Standardbred breed demonstrations under saddle and greeted the thousands of people who attend the event from the USTA petting stall. Ronnie Wrenn, Jr. even came in to drive Anvil Raider in the harness racing demo.

"To those of us that knew Anvil's reputation on the track, it was really exciting to see how calm and relaxed he was, both under saddle and in harness," Nemeth said. "I know Ronnie was amazed that the competitive racing star had transformed into a calm pleasure horse." With a solid resume of pleasure riding and driving skills, Anvil Raider N is now available for adoption.

Founded in 1992 New Vocations is a 501c3 charity that has retrained and rehomed over 5,000 retired racehorses. The Program accepts horses from tracks across the country that are suitably sound for retraining as pleasure mounts. After a regiment of ring work and trail riding the horses are placed in carefully screened homes. Adoptions are closely monitored for a year to assure that the horse has successfully transitioned to its new career. "Horses stay with us for as long as it takes to find the right home and our door is always open to horses that have been through our program," stated Nemeth. For more information on adopting Anvil Raider N or learning more about New Vocations, visit:

by Winnie Morgan Nemeth, for New Vocations

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