From the quality of his breeding to his athletic ability both on and off the racetrack, Heart Butte is all class. This 2007 Empire Maker gelding out of a Seeking the Gold mare had a great work ethic on the track placing in 10 of 16 starts, winning several multiple stakes races, and earning $220,780 over the course of his five year-long racing career. During his last race on May 12, 2013 at Belmont Park, Heart Butte sustained a fractured coffin bone that would conclude his time at the track, but with rehabilitation and time, the athletic gelding would be sound and suitable for a riding career.
Heart Butte was donated to New Vocations Racehorse Adoption Program in June, 2013 where he was rehabilitated for four months prior to starting retraining. From the very beginning, Heart Butte took everything in stride. Nothing seemed to faze him. In fact, his first ride under saddle shocked the rider who had to use a crop and a lot of leg to keep him going at a decent trot when all he wanted to do was walk. This successful racehorse knew he was retired and very much enjoyed a slower pace. Heart had good balance and rhythm and always had a pleasant expression on his face. Shortly into his training it was clear that he had great potential to excel as a show horse. He was also equally respectful to handle on the ground and kind to his turnout buddies. In the mornings, Heart would be the first to greet you and would continue to talk until you came over to pet him. Life as a racehorse and now riding horse suited him both well.
In December, 2013 Heart Butte found his home with adopter Kathryn Mosteller in Amherst, Virginia. This year he will begin training for his new career as a Hunter, a discipline which suits him perfectly. Kathy reports what a great experience it has been working with Heart Butte. ‘My trainer, my family and I are greatly pleased with him and we think he’s such a great horse!’