The group, founded by Alyssa Hedges in 2015, started on Facebook to connect Standardbred lovers and has since grown in size and mission. ROC the Standardbred has formed a board and applied for 501(c)3 not-for-profit recognition. The group’s primary mission is to create a market for Standardbreds as a pleasure horse and their breed ambassador program was designed to help them reach that goal.
Their 2019 lineup features 16 horse and rider teams that include the following:
• a pony-Standardbred cross to multi-million dollar winner Golden Receiver;
• horses aged 5 – 21;
• bays to greys to chestnuts;
• three blind-in-one-eye horses;
• some who raced and others who didn’t make it to the track;
• adoptees to those who never left their race family; and
• riders age 15 and up.
Teams are located throughout New York, Ohio, New Jersey, Maryland and even Canada. They will be found doing everything from barrel racing, to dressage, to hunter/jumpers, to mounted archery and even RUS. Aiming to prove just how versatile Standardbreds are, the team is excited to share the breed with the horse world. The ultimate goal is to drive up adoption rates from Standardbred rescues/transition programs and also to give those in the business alternative options for selling horses retiring from the track.
To keep up on all of the action, you can join ROC the Standardbred’s Facebook group or follow them on Instagram!