Southern California Thoroughbred Rescue

Southern California Thoroughbred Rescue

Just Fishin, with Jessica Abbott of Showcase Training Stables, competing at the Thoroughbred Classic at Galway Downs in Temecula, Calif. Credit: Laurie Taylor Photography


Services: Sanctuary, Rehabilitation, Retraining/Adoption

Location: Norco, CA

Founded: 2008


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Average Number of Thoroughbreds: 18



Southern California Thoroughbred Rescue provides a safety net for Thoroughbreds of all ages and backgrounds who have run out of options.

Started in 2008 by Caroline Betts, SCTR has helped more than 100 horses in need, most taken directly from livestock auctions. SCTR representatives attend local auctions to identify Thoroughbreds potentially at risk. Rescues are made based on need rather than adoptability or rideability.

The SCTR philosophy is that all Thoroughbreds are winners, regardless of pedigree, performance, or physical condition. Once acquired, horses undergo a minimum of 30 days of quarantine at a facility in Apple Valley, where they are handled, evaluated for health, and given necessary veterinary and farrier care. Many will then be “re-started” by a professional trainer. SCTR has about 18 Thoroughbreds, ranging in ages from 5 to 26.

Past and present SCTR horses have included a daughter of the great Alleged; Santa Anita stakes winner Place Cowboy, now training as an eventer; Persistent, who once sold for $120,000; and Free Sammy, who brought $77,000 as a 2-year-old. All were acquired from Southern California livestock auctions.

Prospective new homes are carefully screened, and most program horses are adopted out to experienced riders or those with qualified trainers. The adoption contract provides lifetime protection–adoptees may not be resold or transferred by adopters but must return to SCTR.

Rescues can only be achieved when space and funds are available, thus the need for income is ongoing. All donations are welcome, and horse sponsorships range from $10 to $250 per month.

Prominent equine artists such as the late Fred Stone and the late Christine Picavet have donated proceeds from their work, while the organization has received support from Blue Horse Charities, ASPCA, The Exceller Fund, and Thoroughbred Charities of America, as well as the TAA.


Southern California Thoroughbred Rescue Success Stories

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