The barn doors of Royal Star Ranch in Orange, California are always open for horses that have nowhere else to go. Over 100 have found shelter at Jenny Earhart's farm. There, they flourish. Injuries are healed. Weight is gained. Horses from the track that have known only to run learn to be companion animals. If they are sound enough, they are pointed to a career as a trail horse or perhaps to grace the ring as a show animal. They are given the time they need when they find themselves down on their luck.
Jenny didn't start out to be a rescue angel. She grew up with Quarter Horses and Tennessee Walking Horses. A formidable competitor, she has won many World and International Championships. Her beloved World Champion, Royal Prince Charlie, still lives at the ranch today. But Jenny grew bored with the show routine and looked for another outlet for her horse passion.
While searching the internet, she ran across a stunning ex-racehorse, Skyattic. When she contacted the seller "I was told that Sky had a fractured knee and anybody who agreed to take him would have to agree to do the surgery," she says. "Because I had a Quarter Horse I was reselling anyway, I knew I could apply that profit to the operation."
The rest, they say, is history. Sky had the operation and Jenny had a rehab project. Through the months of hand walking and care, Jenny found a new passion. As she did more research and talked with more people she came to realize how many horses need a home. She found superstar racehorse Racketeer in a kill pen at an auction. He has lifetime earnings of $412,190. After a well-deserved recuperation at the ranch he found his forever home at Old Friends in Kentucky.
Money winners Blue Chagall ($401,547) and Killer Bear ($285,256) came directly from the track to begin their retirement with Jenny. Whether they are well-cared for Thoroughbreds from the track whose racing days are at an end, or the horse that was abandoned by the side of the road there are many who need a new start that Royal Star Ranch provides.