Spartan in his racing days, with a groom and child.
Always a gentleman!
Spartan came to us on August 28th, 2020 as an owner-surrender. An obvious case of neglect, the initial veterinarian's report showed a glimpse into the terror this boy had been living. Spartan was at least 300 pounds underweight, suffering from a heart murmur, had several wounds needing specialty care, and in need of dental and farrier care. We also suspect he had tar on his back, most likely from standing under an overhang for shade and shelter. Since his arrival, Spartan has made quite the turnaround. He was placed on a special re-feeding diet with weighed rations of grain and hay, along with slowly building his tolerance for grass consumption. He was also prescribed vitamins and minerals from our veterinarian.
Spartan has quite the story, and quite a history. He is no ordinary horse! When he came to us, his owner mentioned that he was an ex-racehorse and promised to send us his registered name. We never were told his true identity, and he was sent in a leather halter with the registered name of another Thoroughbred. Luckily, all Thoroughbred racehorses are tattooed on the inside of their upper lip before being allowed to race. With the help of the Thoroughbred community on Facebook, Spartan was quickly identified as...Dunkin Bend! Hours of research uncovered quite the story – once trained by Hall of Famer Steve Asmussen and ridden by the legendary jockey Ricardo Santana Jr., Spartan was a winner of over $220,000 on the track, most of which was won in his two and three year old seasons. Michael Langford, a previous owner of Spartan, spoke with us once we discovered his identity. “I thought this was going to be my (Kentucky) Derby horse.”
Showing the true spirit of a Thoroughbred, Spartan has defeated starvation and terrible neglect, and is now inspiration to all who hear his story. We are so very thankful to all who donated upon his arrival to assist with his rehabilitation, and are thankful to all who continue to make donations on his behalf!
Links and Videos
(VIDEO) - Breezing at the Ocala Breeders April 2013 2yo sale
(VIDEO) - Winning his first race at Saratoga in New York
Dunkirk - Spartan's sire
By being a sponsor, you can direct your donated dollars to a special horse of your choice!
Date: September 23, 2023
Time: 6:00 PM - 10:00 PM
Location: Equus Rescue and Therapy
8743 Le Pere School Road
Millstadt, IL 62260
All proceeds benefit the rescued horses of Equus Rescue & its equine therapy programs.