What our "Family" has to say about us!
Nicole Bessey Adopted Carta Gold
Me and Carta Gold aka Heart
I grew up riding horses, they have been a part of my life since I can remember. Sadly during my 20's I had to take a hiatus from riding. I could barely take care of myself, let alone a horse, however I always planned on getting another horse when I could dedicate the time and was financially stable. I have always loved Thoroughbreds ever since I was a kid. I love their willingness, their courage and the versatility that they offer. A Thoroughbred can do anything! When the time came to bring a horse back into my life a Thoroughbred was an obvious choice. I wanted to rescue, since there is such a need. I researched several OTTB (Off the Track Thoroughbred) organizations throughout the country, but I continually was drawn back to an organization called Florida TRAC. Mostly because they focused on Thoroughbreds that were raced in Florida, plus the racetracks and jockey's are working with Florida TRAC in placing these TB's in their second careers. A racehorse's life is not always glamorous. There is a specific need for placement of the TB's that are not fast enough, or those that become injured racing and so on. After a lot of research I decided that I wanted to rescue from Hidden Acres Equestrian Center. The owners Suzee and Shannon Norris are fluent in Natural Horsemanship, which although I am still learning, as a rider, it is important to me to have a "relationship" with my horse, and to be partners in everything that we do. Another fantastic thing about Hidden Acres is not only are they rescuing and rehabbing OTTB's, they are actively rescuing, fostering and rehabbing all breeds of horses. Two women after my own heart.
I contacted Suzee interested in one of the OTTB's that she was fostering. After discussing my experience level and what I was looking for in a horse and for myself, she recommended not the horse I was originally looking at, but a lovely and charming 10 year old gelding named Carta Gold aka Heart who was off the track for 5 years. I made the 65 mile drive (one way) to meet this horse, and I must say
Suzee understands these Thoroughbreds so well, that she was able to make a "perfect match" between horse and rider. At Hidden Acres they allowed me to visit Heart and ride him, which I did once a week (sometimes twice) and in essence allowed me and Heart to get to know each other. I have fallen head over heels for this horse, and he has found his "forever mommy". It is a definite match made in heaven! I think that the horse was meant to be mine, and I his.
I could not have asked for a better experience all around. Suzee and Shannon are very horse oriented, and everyone at the barn was wonderful and welcoming to me.
Hidden Acres would have been my mother's dream for me as a kid learning to ride. There is such a horse oriented atmosphere. The horses come first and it is about a relationship and partnership between horse and rider. It does not matter whether you need the basics, or are an experienced rider/owner, Suzee and Shannon are a wealth of information. It is the kind of place that people spend forever looking for. There is a strong sense of comminity from the moment you drive on the property. I wish that I did not live 65 miles away and that Heart could have stayed there, they are that fantastic.
I am a HUGE supporter of Suzee, Shannon and Florida TRAC, I think what they are doing is wonderful! These horses need a voice and someone to stand up for them. Suzee, Shannon and Hidden Acres does just this. No matter where I end up, I will be getting my next horse (a friend for Heart maybe????) from Suzee and Shannon!
Thank you Suzee, Shannon, Hidden Acres and Florida TRAC!
Nicole and Carta Gold "Heart"