New York Thoroughbreds Shine at Vermont Summer Festival

Southern Charm, ridden by Lainie Wimberly, shows the form that made him champion of the TAKE2 Thoroughbred Hunter Division during opening week of the 2018 Vermont Summer Festival in East Dorset, Vt. Credits: Andrew Ryback Photography
Foolish Games, ridden by Katie Graney, jumps to the championship in the TAKE2 Thoroughbred Jumper Division during the first week of the 2018 Vermont Summer Festival in East Dorset, Vt. Credits: Andrew Ryback Photography

EAST DORSET, Vt. — Foolish Games, ridden by Katie Graney, and Southern Charm, ridden by Lanie Wimberly, were named champions of the TAKE2 Thoroughbred divisions during the opening week of the 25th annual Vermont Summer Festival.

Foolish Games, a 16-year-old Thoroughbred gelding by Out of Place and owned by Olde Towne Equestrian Center based in Selden, N.Y., earned two first-place and two second-place ribbons in the jumper division to be crowned champion. Epitomizing the versatility of the breed, Foolish Games has carried 14-year-old Graney of Garden City, N.Y., in the hunter, jumper, and equitation rings and competed in both the TAKE2 Hunter and Jumper Divisions during the first week of competition at the Vermont Summer Festival.

“We just celebrated our one-year anniversary together earlier this week,” said Graney, who leases Foolish Games from trainer Myrna Treuting. “We started in the hunters, but I really wanted to have a career in the equitation, so we worked on halting, counter canter, and trotting jumps, and ended up champion in the mini equitation at several horse shows.

Sign Up for E-News

“He is the best to jump, so sweet on the ground, and loves everyone,” continued Graney. “I like that these horses have had a history in racing, but people work to train them to be hunter/jumpers. They are so much fun to ride!”

Foolish Games raced at Saratoga Race Course in Saratoga Springs, N.Y., before starting a career in the show ring when Treuting added him to her program two years ago.

“These divisions are great because race horses can absolutely be retrained and this gives them a job, and it also gives people a reason to buy Thoroughbreds again,” said Treuting, who coaches the Stony Brook University Equestrian Team out of Olde Towne Equestrian on a string of mostly Thoroughbred horses. “They are amazing; so honest and brave. I have warmbloods too, but I would take a Thoroughbred any day of the week!”

In the hunter ring, Wimberly and Southern Charm, a seven-year-old Thoroughbred gelding by 2007 Breeder’s Cup winner Curlin, swept the division with four blue ribbons over fences and a win under saddle. Wimberly, who hails from Ridgefield, Conn., and operates Brigadoon Show Stables out of North Salem, N.Y., had the ride for owner Courtney Safadi.

“We showed nothing but Thoroughbreds when I first started in this business,” said Wimberly, who started riding Southern Charm in August of 2016. “Courtney asked me to show him in the Thoroughbred division, and he was delightful. He wants to do the right thing for you all the time and is a ham in the barn.”

Safadi adopted Southern Charm from New Vocations Racehorse Adoption Program in Lexington, Ky., as a way for her to return to show jumping after 18 years out of the saddle. While Southern Charm was bred for the track, he never raced.

“I am really happy he doesn’t run that fast,” said Wimberly. “Thoroughbreds are wonderful horses that need a second career and a second job, so for us to support this division is only natural.”

The TAKE2 Second Career Thoroughbred Program is committed to promoting and developing second careers for racehorses once they have retired from the track. Launched in 2012 by the New York Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association (NYTHA) in collaboration with the New York Racing Association (NYRA) and the New York Thoroughbred Breeders Inc. (NYTB), TAKE2 funds prize money and awards in hunter and jumper classes restricted to Thoroughbreds that are eligible to be registered with The Jockey Club In addition to the Vermont Summer Festival, TAKE2 events are offered at more than 300 horse shows in 10 of the 12 USEF zones across 23 states.

The Vermont Summer Festival is New England’s largest hunter/jumper competition and the richest sporting event based on purse in the state of Vermont with more than $750,000 in prize money. The event is also a proud member of the Show Jumping Hall of Fame, the Marshall & Sterling League, and the North American League (NAL). Outside the show ring, exhibitors are immersed in the charm of Vermont's shopping, dining, and outdoor activities.

For more information on the Vermont Summer Festival, please e-mail or visit

See more Equestrian news at

Find us on Facebook

Sign Up for E-News to get top stories delivered daily to your inbox.

TAP Into Your Local News:

Sign Up for E-News

The Parelli Foundation Seeks Volunteer Board Member

The Parelli Foundation is seeking a new board member to join our volunteer board. If you have experience with being on a non-profit board, have a passion for horses, and would like to help further our mission of helping to create a better world for horses and humans through natural horsemanship education, we encourage you to apply.

This is a remote/virtual position. Applicants must be United ...

Equine Events in New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania

Events are listed for New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania. To have your event listed e-mail For premium event listings enter them online at

July 3-8 — I Love New York Horse Show, Lake Placid, N.Y., 518-523-9625 or online at

July 4-8 — Brandywine Horse Shows, hunters, jumpers, ...

Grandin to Keynote at the 2018 Certified Horsemanship Association International Conference

July 16, 2018

FORT COLLINS, Colo. — Attendees of the Certified Horsemanship Association’s International Conference are in for a treat during the Sunday night Awards Banquet as Dr. Temple Grandin will be the keynote speaker. The conference is set for Sept. 28-30 at Colorado State University and the Hilton Hotel in Fort Collins, Colo.

The Awards Banquet is the final event of three days of ...

Racing Partnership Open House at the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame Is July 23

SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. — The National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame will present a unique opportunity for racing fans and people interested in thoroughbred ownership to meet representatives of notable racing partnerships on Monday, July 23 from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. in the Museum’s Hall of Fame Gallery. Admission is complimentary and visitors are also invited to tour the ...

Durkin To Lead Guided Tours At The National Museum Of Racing  And Hall Of Fame

SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. — Retired racecaller Tom Durkin, one of the most recognizable and vibrant personalities in the history of American thoroughbred racing, will lead personalized tours of the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame throughout the Saratoga Race Course meeting this summer from July 20 through Sept. 3.

Tours will be from 11 a.m. to noon Wednesday through Sunday with a ...

Get A Behind The Scenes View With Monmouth Park's Dawn Patrol

OCEANPORT, N.J. — The popular Dawn Patrol, which provides a free behind-the-scenes tour of Monmouth Park's stable area during training hours as well as the jockeys’ quarters, is underway on Saturdays and Sundays through Aug. 19 with the exception of Haskell Day on Sunday, July 29.

The tram tour ride starts at 8 ...

Upcoming Events


Sun, July 22, 10:00 AM

Christie Hoffman Farm Park, Tewksbury Township

The 2018 Tewksbury Barn Tour