Competitor Newsletter 2022: Vol 1

May 10, 2022

Congratulations! 

You are one of nearly 500 talented trainers and team members who are on track to show the world what a Thoroughbred ex-racehorse can do at this year’s Makeover. 

DON’T STOP READING HERE!

What follows is all the essential information you need to set forth on your journey to Kentucky. We will have a “Welcome Webinar” which you can access via Zoom Video Conferencing (passcode 732040) or live in our Makeover Trainers Group at 7:00 PM EST, Thursday, February 17th where we will review much of this email, talk about what’s new this year, and answer all your burning questions about what to expect over the next eight months.

Communications and Resources

The RRP sends all formal communications by EMAIL and between now and October you will receive periodic emails from us with important information. Please read them thoroughly, keep them somewhere that you can access them later, and be sure that they don’t end up in your spam folder. NOTE: If you choose to unsubscribe from the RRP’s emails, you will be unsubscribed from trainer emails. We also utilize text notifications on occasion and more heavily during the weekend of the event. You will receive text updates if you opted in on your trainer application.

These emails, along with our Rulebook and Trainer Portal, are designed to be essential resources for you. The RRP has a small staff and we create these resources in effort to anticipate and address as many questions as possible and thus serve you better. Please take the time to familiarize yourself with the information that’s been made available to you. The more informed you are, the better experience you will have!

How to Contact the RRP

The entire RRP staff are all available to support and assist you. They work a 9 AM to 5 PM EST, Monday through Friday schedule and can be reached by email (secretary@tbmakeover.org) or phone (410-798-5140) during normal business hours. Facebook messages to staff are not an appropriate way to contact us.

As a competitor, your primary point of contact is Makeover Show Secretary and the RRP Program Assistant, Rayna Erasmus. Rayna tends to the Secretary email address listed above.

Schedule of Critical Dates

Below is a list of deadlines throughout the year. New for 2022: All paperwork deadlines close at 5pm EST on their due date, which will always fall on a business day. We will not run you down for paperwork and missing paperwork jeopardizes your Makeover entry. If we choose to accept late paperwork, we have the right to assess a $75 late fee.

Tuesday, February 15

Acceptances announced, horse registrations open

Sunday, April 10

EARLIEST date for EHV-1 vaccine compliance: EHV-1 must be administered no more than 6 months prior to move-in at KHP

Thursday, June 30

Waitlist close: Anyone who missed the January 21st application deadline who wishes to pay a late fee may apply to be added to the waitlist, or accepted trainers may add a second horse via the waitlist as well.

Friday, July 29

Horse Registration close: All Individual and Team Captain entries that have not registered their makeover eligible horses after this date will be withdrawn. 

Monday, August 1

Final Entry open: Final entry enters you into your chosen discipline(s), reserves stalls, and enters your horse into the ASPCA Marketplace (if desired). Microchips must be recorded by this time as well.

Monday, August 15

Final Entry close

Friday, September 9

Final Entry edits close

Monday 26

Latest date for EHV-1 vaccine compliance: EHV-1 must be administered no less than 14 days prior to move-in at KHP

Horse Registration and Entry Management 

Trainers are to register their horses as soon as they are acquired and must have a horse registered no later than July 29, 2022. If you do not register a horse by July 29th, you will be assumed a scratch and your entry will be withdrawn. 

You may access the Makeover Horse Registration Form by selecting “Add a Thoroughbred” from the actions column dropdown menu next to the appropriate entry in the Trainer Portal. When completing any form in this section you must be logged in to the website using the account that you used when you submitted your trainer application. Once your registration is submitted it is reviewed and formatted to create a public profile on the website. It may take several days (or even longer as we work through the initial flood) before your horse is published to the website. We will contact you if there is a problem with your registration. If you registered your horse before February 15th, please give our staff some time to review and update your horse’s registration status.

Once your Horse Registration is submitted it will show up in the Manage My Entries grid. From here you can check on the status of your registration, report your horse as sold or withdrawn, and add photos to your horse’s profile. 

New for 2022: Team Captains are responsible for registering their team’s horse, uploading health documents, and completing the final entry form. These actions cannot be done through a team member’s Trainer Portal. 

ASPCA Makeover Marketplace

The RRP promotes Makeover horses who are for sale or adoption through the ASPCA Makeover Marketplace. In order to identify horses early on who are expected to be for sale, we ask for the horse’s sale status on the Horse Registration form. Sale status and inclusion in the Marketplace catalog is confirmed and billed during the Final Entry process.

Marketplace horses are cross-posted on the TB Makeover site, RRP social platforms, the OTTB United app, and with additional media partners. It’s important to note that while the RRP provides added exposure for your horses and markets the event to potential horse shoppers, entering your horse in the Marketplace is not a guarantee that the horse will sell. It is still the responsibility of the trainer to create a quality, compelling ad and to price their horse appropriately. Trainers are encouraged to market their horses independently; the Marketplace should simply be one facet of a marketing strategy. We will have a webinar later in the summer with tips for marketing your Makeover horses.

In effort to provide added service to our trainers, we make inclusion in the Marketplace available to any horse who has been/will be registered for the 2022 competition year, even if they do not ultimately complete the event. More details on how to take advantage of the Marketplace-only option will be made available by summertime.

Code of Conduct

By participating in the Thoroughbred Makeover, trainers become ambassadors not only for the RRP and the event but also for the Thoroughbred breed; therefore, the RRP expects trainers and those associated with them to conduct themselves with the highest degree of horsemanship and sportsmanship before, during, and after the Thoroughbred Makeover. An acknowledgement of this code of conduct was included within the participation agreement which you signed and submitted with your application.

Microchips and Health Requirements

The Thoroughbred Makeover has become known for industry-leading policies regarding horse identification, as well as soundness and wellness. In addition to current coggins and health certificates, the Thoroughbred Makeover requires each horse entering a competition ring in Kentucky must pass an Arrival Exam which verifies that the horse meets the following standards:

  • Is in a minimum body condition score of 4 according to the Henneke Body Condition Scoring System,
  • Is microchipped with a Jockey Club-registered chip (available for purchase here),
  • Is vaccinated for EHV-1,
  • Is sound in-hand,
  • And has normal vitals and is free of any major swellings or blemishes that would impede performance.

It is also strongly recommended that horses are vaccinated in accordance with the AAEP core vaccination guidelines. Trainers should familiarize themselves with these policies and the Arrival Exam procedure, which are all found in the rulebook, and engage their veterinarian to help them make sure their horses are appropriately prepared for the competition. The RRP staff is always available to support trainers in achieving these requirements.

COVID-19 or Other Public Health Crisis 

If faced with an active public health crisis as in 2020, the RRP staff will assess the impact on participants and the logistical and financial viability of running the event as planned and make a determination as early as possible. 

The RRP’s goal is to produce a safe event in compliance with current public health guidance and all applicable government and venue-specific requirements and best practices. Participants will be expected to comply with any and all public health measures in place which could include, but is not limited to, mask-wearing and use of PPE, social distancing, testing on-site or prior to travel, and temperature-taking. Participants will be made aware of any such policies at least 30 days prior to the start of competition. Unwillingness to comply with safety measures will result in immediate removal from the show grounds. 

The RRP will not be held liable for any losses or damages claimed as a result of event cancelation NOR as a result of contracting any communicable disease at the event.

Lodging and Other Reservations

Competitors are encouraged to make lodging arrangements sooner than later, as options fill up quickly. Information about our host hotel and KHP camping is available on our website.

Stabling arrangements are not made until August and will be handled through the RRP. It’s going to be a long week. If turnout is essential for your horse, there are ample layover facilities in the area that you could stable at overnight and ship into the Horse Park during the day.

Off-Track Thoroughbred Magazine

Subscriptions to Off-Track Thoroughbred Magazine are now available for as low as $20! This award-wining quarterly publication is full of articles on training, care, racehorse life, and aftercare news, and frequently highlights our own Makeover trainers! Please consider maintaining a subscription to the only magazine dedicated to Thoroughbreds in sport, published for OTTB-lovers just like you.

RRP Thoroughbred Makeover Trainers Closed Facebook Group

We maintain a Facebook group for Makeover trainers past and present to share news, discuss their work, and get to know one another. This group is administrated by the RRP staff and volunteers who work to make sure it stays on topic, positive, and family-friendly. Group admins have the right to remove posts or comments that they believe are not in the spirit of, or distracting from, the intent of the group.

While everyone would love to come home with top placings and a share of prize money, most of you are also in this for other reasons. If previous years are any indication, you are likely to encounter some like-minded new friends who share your passion. The Facebook group can help make that happen, and is an excellent resource for advice and encouragement from experienced trainers. 

Webinars

The RRP organizes several webinars on key subjects for Makeover Trainers throughout the year. Webinars are accessible via Zoom Video Conferencing and Facebook Live and are also posted to YouTube for viewing after the fact. Mark your calendars for these upcoming sessions:

 

This Thursday February 17th at 7 PM EST: Makeover 101: Welcome Webinar

RRP Executive Director Kirsten Green and Show Secretary Rayna Erasmus lead a welcome session for the class of 2022. Communications Manager, Kristen Kovatch Bentley, will join to discuss tips on marketing your Makeover journey. 

Access via Zoom Video Conferencing (passcode 732040) or live in our Makeover Trainers Group

We are in the process of finalizing the rest of our session topics and will publish a schedule shortly.

Promotion and Press

The Thoroughbred Makeover gets lots of press, and that’s a good thing. The RRP’s mission is to increase demand for these horses, and promotion is a big part of that. You will notice that the stories we pitch to the press tend to have some type of unique or noteworthy angle, whether it’s about the horse or the trainer. If you feel you or your horse have a newsworthy angle, please let us know, as we can only promote stories of which we are aware! If you and your horse are not well known, it doesn’t mean we’re not rooting for you. 

It serves the RRP’s mission when your work with Thoroughbreds is promoted. Whether you are an amateur that trains and sells a horse from time to time or a professional with a large training operation and a herd of students, you are the bridges to second careers that the racing industry and future horse buyers need to meet. 

Welcome!

You are an impressive bunch and we’re all proud to welcome you as the Class of 2022. We said in 2010 when the RRP began that we needed to get more Thoroughbreds back into the hands of great trainers so that they could demonstrate their quality and the Makeover is making that happen in a big way. But most importantly — enjoy the process over the next eight months. Listen to your horses, make good friends, and learn something new from others. This is about so much more than one weekend in October.

All the best,

Rayna Erasmus

Program Assistant and Show Secretary 

T: (410) 798- 5140

3357 Hazelwood Road, Edgewater, MD 21037

Subscribe to Off-Track Thoroughbred Magazine

www.TBMakeover.org

 

Social Media and Important Links

Thoroughbred Makeover Website

2022 Rulebook

Trainer Portal (restricted, must be logged in to access)

RRP Website

RRP Store

RRP Facebook Page

TB Makeover Public Facebook Group

TB Makeover Trainers Closed Facebook Group

TB Makeover Volunteers Facebook Group

Instagram: @RetiredRacehorseProject

Twitter: @RRP_TBMakeover

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