Captain Arias finds a new career in Atlanta, Georgia!
- Elizabeth Wood
Arias ran his last race at Thistledown on June 2, 2001 and I had the
good fortune to see my next horse race. As "Captain" was
led onto the track his beauty sent goose bumps up my arms. He was
magnificent. He truly made the other horses look common. As he arched
his head and showed his lovely set head and neck, I knew that I just
had to take him home.
It was my first trip to Thistledown and with the help of Nancy Scott,
the director of CANTER Ohio, I was going to choose a new horse to
take home. We started early - 6 AM with Nancy guiding us around the
stables and introducing us to the trainers who showed us their horses.
It was almost overwhelming, but, Nancy had prepped me and I brought
my notebook, digital camera and an extra set of eyes (my husband).
We had spent the morning looking at over thirty horses and had narrowed
the list down to about six possible horses. Captain Arias was one
of the six and was set to run in the sixth race so we decided to catch
it and see how he really moved. We had met with two other trainers
who also had horses running in the sixth and we decided to place a
few bets. It is always more fun betting when you know the players
and the horses. I bet two horses to win and one to show. Captain Arias
was one of the win tickets. One of the many track veterinarians was
trackside watching as the horses came out. He agreed with me that
"Captain" was especially well put together.
Captain Arias was in the number ten position as the gate opened. Captain
Arias shot out and fell into second place. Ohhhh, I was so excited.
He was going to win! As they came down the backstretch "Captain"
hung on, but, little by little the other horses started passing him.
I had my digital camera focused on the finish line waiting for him.
The leaders crossed the line with "Captain" third -- from
last. I quickly turned and caught his final finish photo--one that
the track photographer would not get! My disappointment in his finish
was gone when my husband informed me we won on the other win and show
Captain Arias was tired of racing but still sound and a beautiful
mover. My husband, Barry, and I followed him back to the stables and
met with his owners. They were ready to part with him. I was a three-time
winner! Two winners on the track and one after the race to take home.
A deal was struck and the vet gave him a quick look over after the
race. "Captain" was quiet and sound. A full vet check was
scheduled for following Wednesday.
Arias passed his vet check with flying colors and I returned next
week with my four horse trailer to bring him home to Georgia. There
were so many beautiful horses that we had seen the last day "Captain"
raced. Not one to make hard decisions, we filled up our trailer with
three other beautiful thoroughbreds. Why go home with empty stalls?
Two very special rescue horses from CANTER were loaded with extra
special care and brought to new homes in Georgia.
Captain learning dressage.
Captain Arias has a natural frame for dressage and is learning to
jump. He loves it! He is quiet, calm and very loving. He free walks
behind two other Thistledown thoroughbreds when going in or out of
the pasture. He is almost ready to fox hunt having already done a
two group rides with the fox hunt – including a spin on the
Atlanta Steeplechase course!
teaching Captain to jump.
Arias at his second hunt with Elizabeth riding side saddle in November