Troop Horse events for the NSW Mounted Police are a time honoured tradition at the Sydney Royal Easter Show and in 2013, the retired racehorse has again proven their worth off the track.

Scott Brodie, Racing NSW’s Thoroughbred Retraining Manager was given the honour of judging the troop horse events for the NSW Mounted Police. The events included: best turned out; best combination of police horse and rider; best pair of police horses and best performance by horse and rider over four precision musical ride displays.

Judging horses so efficient in their fields is often a difficult task. Brodie was chosen because of his time served at the mounted section and his ongoing association with the ‘Mounties’ through the Thoroughbred Rehabilitation Trust. An intimate knowledge is essential when judging this type of event.

It was pleasing to see that Thoroughbreds took out the major awards considering a majority of police horses now include warm bloods and draft crosses.

Troop horse Patezza, ridden by Senior Constable Palmer, won the prestigious Hazlet trophy for the most outstanding performance by a police horse across all classes.
Patezza is a former racehorse that won the Group 1 Doncaster in 2005 and earned over $1.7 million in prizemoney during his racing career. On retiring from the track, the gelding was guided in his transition from racehorse to police horse by head trainer of the Thoroughbred Retraining Program Brodie himself. 

"It's very difficult when you’re judging 16 horses and riders that all look identical but it shows the versatility of the Thoroughbred to come out on top,” Brodie said.

The first three places in the musical ride were taken out by Thoroughbreds with first place awarded to troop horse Parade, ridden by senior Constable Glazer, second place to Patezza, ridden by Senior Constable Palmer and third place to Souvla Bay, ridden by Senior Constable Hinton. All of these Thoroughbreds were bred to race.

"There is no doubting the ability of thoroughbreds to succeed in just about any discipline," said Brodie.
"Racing  NSW will continue to nurture our relationship with the Mounted Police and continue to offer them any retrainees that have the aptitude for what is without doubt one of the most demanding of all equestrian disciplines.”

Commander of the NSW Mounted Police, Inspector Kirsten McFadden shared similar sentiments to Brodie. “Our Police horses are so valuable in the work they perform for the community and we have several outstanding Thoroughbreds who have really made the grade in Police work," she said.

"New South Wales Mounted Police is very thankful to the Thoroughbred Rehabilitation Program as they perform a vital role in rehoming retired racehorses.”
“We receive numerous requests from Thoroughbred owners to take their horses as Police mounts.  As our unit doesn't have the ability to perform this role, we are now able to refer the Thoroughbreds directly to the Program.”

Overall, the Thoroughbred continues to prove its place in various roles after racing, which highlights the importance of the Thoroughbred Rehabilitation Program and its aim of giving racehorses a second chance.