Three high quality racetrack performers have been adopted as equine Ambassadors for Harness Education & Rehoming Opportunities.
The trio now spend their retirement highlighting the many great attributes of Standardbreds as riding and pleasure horses and make regular appearances at Victorian feature race meetings and promotional events including Pony Club visits.
If you are interested in having the HERO Ambassadors attend an event, or would like further information, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Affectionately known as “Tas” – he was bred in Tasmania - Villagem is a 2006 foal who retired in May, 2015 after a headline-making career which netted $626,585 in prizemoney.
He won 25 races, including three Group One’s – the VicBred Super Series Final as a three-year-old, and both the Australiasian Breeders Crown and Chariots of Fire aged four.
As an open age performer, he finished third behind modern day folk heroes Smoken Up and Blacks A Fake in the 2010 Miracle Mile.
Tas was donated to Harness Education & Rehoming Opportunities by his owner Mick Lingard.
He is sponsored by Erin’s Equine Services, In Light Equine Systems and Blue Chip Feed who look after his day to day health and wellbeing, and Zilco who generously donated a wardrobe of rugs.
Waikare Aristocrat, or “Toff” to his friends, wins hearts wherever he goes.
He won 15 trotting races and $124,160 in stakes, highlighted by the Group One SA Trotters’ Derby and Group Two NSW Trotters’ Championship.
He was also competed successfully under saddle, winning a Monte race at Melton.
Standing around 15hh tall, Toff made a seamless transition to pleasure riding at the end of his racing career and when not fulfilling HERO ambassador duties, enjoys leisurely trail rides and the occasional show.
He won two gold medals at the 2017 EV Masters Games but loves returning to the racetrack, where his stunning temperament makes him a crowd favourite, particularly among children.
Toff was donated to HERO by his breeders and racing owners, Graham McDermott & Geoff Morison.
Widely travelled square-gaiter Ridgehead Cahore (aka Ridge) is the most recent addition to the HERO Program’s Ambassador ranks.
The 12-year-old Swedish-bred made headlines in 2013 when he travelled from Europe to contest the inaugural Great Southern Star at Tabcorp Park, Melton under the guidance of Norwegian trainer Terje Melnas.
The Scandinavian trail blazer ran a creditable third in his Elimination Heat before finishing fifth in the $250,000 Group One Final behind Vulcan.
The son of Buvetier D’Aunou was subsequently purchased by clients of the Chris Lang stable and continued his racing career in Australia, notching a Tabcorp Park Menangle victory and contesting several Monte (ridden trot) events before retiring due to injury.
He enjoyed a pampered retirement in a trail riding home prior to being offered to HERO in late 2016 and is a deserving addition to the Ambassador Program, having secured 24 trotting wins, 20 placings and $246,455 in stake earnings in four countries over 108 race starts and taken a best mark of 1:58.6.