Now THAT'S a Horse of a Different Color!


What are your thoughts?

On Friday March 26 I watched the video below after my mom mentioned she saw a piece on TV about a track somewhere painting their race horses. Nothing against my mom, but I am more in shock I did not read about the possibility of common practice horse painting from somewhere in the industry.

 I started to research it as my first thoughts were, "This is insane, I feel like I would be watching a Skittles commercial." Then an after thought of, "I like Skittles though and could use some right now" emerged. I also asked if it was necessary to really paint the entire horse a color? Why not just the horse's hind or torso? Then I came back to reality and said, well, "This is Hollywood." That is where I left it. The paint may help fans and horse players, as ridiculous as it seems, but I am going to miss the photos of shimmering bay coats.

 Anyway, what are your initial reactions?

FYI - This was released April 1st on TVG's Community forums. So take it as you will =)



Leave a Comment:


Oh yuck! That's just plain ridiculous.  I love my black and dark bay horses...and if my ancient eyes (cataracts and all) can spot my can everyone else.  Plus, for personal reasons (like that 18 hand gray I couldn't get down from after my foot caught in the stirrup) I'm just not very fond of gray will I know which is which.  Race horses are utterly sublime...why turn them in ridiculous clowns?  Freaky idea!

07 Apr 2010 11:14 AM
Greg J.

It took me a few seconds to realize it was a April Fool's Joke!  They would NEVER do that, It was funny though...

07 Apr 2010 11:20 AM

This is insane, that's what the saddle cloth is for! If they want to help people see the horses how about change the camera angles. The camera is so far away it'd be better if we got a closer view than painting these horse. It's just ridiculous and takes away the serious nature of the sport. These are athletes! Why not paint human athletes too so we know which team they're on better.

07 Apr 2010 11:24 AM

This is interesting...yet I wonder if painting the whole body is a good idea? Hopefully this would not cause any harm to the horse by effecting the way that they sweat? I definitely am all for some leopard spots on the rump or some lightning bolts on the neck...maybe dye their mane and tails in rainbows or some zebra stripes! I think that doing some creative maybe each stable can pic a certain theme? This definately could draw fans to see the horses. As long as it is 100% safe for the horse I think that this could be a good thing to draw new comers to the tracks and promote the sport :P

07 Apr 2010 11:27 AM
Golden Gate

My first response is are those colors that are proven to not be harmful to horses? There are many types of dye that are not made for living skin. Somehow I doubt the colors are not harmful plus it could affect the way the horses sweat...has any of that been tested?

07 Apr 2010 11:31 AM

Greg, I definitely need to add something about the April 1st date and hoax.

But I do still pose the question, how would you feel about something like this really happening?

07 Apr 2010 11:52 AM

Wow this makes every horse look like a clown and not even a horse I would never do this to anyhorse too bad that they cant see the horse that what a track announcer is uded for people and people who cant see their horse will maybe should get some glasses.

07 Apr 2010 12:01 PM
needler in Virginia

BAH! Humbug!! Not even Tiny Tim would have liked this.............urcckk.

Cheers and safe trips AND natural colors to all.

07 Apr 2010 1:09 PM
Karen in Indiana


07 Apr 2010 1:18 PM
Criminal Type

Well, To each his own, I don't like it and I wont be trying to dye my black horse (as if it would show) any funky colors. He already has red highlights in his mane & tail that im trying to get rid of.

07 Apr 2010 1:24 PM

I understand that this story is a little tongue-in-cheek.  However, if they painted the horses, wouldn't it be more difficult to see the dapples, or coat color of the horse.  Many people at the races look for those signs in the paddock to make a judgement on who they will bet. The concept is interesting, but I would change the jockey's caps before changing the color of the horse.

07 Apr 2010 2:06 PM
Greg J.


    OK, Let's say for a second they were thinking of doing this.  It would never happen, No matter how safe they say the dye is, It would be an accident waiting to happen.  The owners and trainers would never put something on their horse that blocks their pores, Knowing how much they sweat, Can you imagine if this was allowed?  The first horse that over heated or had a heart attack, The dye would be the first thing attacked and lawsuits would follow!  Not even mentioning some of it getting in the horses eyes?  Plus, What about the grey's?  Can you imagine Stardom Bound coming down the track as a red filly? Or, Zenyatta coming down the stretch as a yellow mare?  Like I said, Funny joke for April Fool's Day, and the trainer's involved in the video did a great job acting, But, A insane idea, Takes away from the beauty of the sport and each horses individual identity. IMHO...

07 Apr 2010 2:12 PM

This really takes me back to childhood, watching Rainbow Brite and My Little Pony. With this system, I would bet the eight horse every time!

07 Apr 2010 3:41 PM

I thought it was a great April Fool's Joke haha. Though Im pretty sure it was the responses that made it funnier because I can't believe people actually thought for one, the owners would let them paint their million dollar or multi million dollar horse, and two, that they would do that in the first place. Silly people.

07 Apr 2010 4:13 PM

Nina: Yeah, part of that is my fault, I didn't post the "April 1st" hint until after Greg J. suggested it.

So it definitely came across as somewhat credible if you read my post and didn't have a hint. My bad everyone.

BUT Greg J. did give the answer I was looking for in his opinion on how the industry would embrace such a practice or not.

07 Apr 2010 4:17 PM

LOL!  Too funny, but I have to admit I was a little slow on the uptake.  You could tell in the video that Doug O'Neill was just dying to break into a big grin - a very mischievous look on his face.  The green horse wasn't bad, but that orange - ugh!  Also, it was pretty obvious that it was some kind of simple wash and not a pore clogging thicker paint.  Funny.  Thanks for sharing it!

07 Apr 2010 10:08 PM
Matthew Cheng

In my opinion, I believed it is not a very good idea to set up the Horse Printing System because if it's a race like the Breeders' Cup Classic or the Triple Crown races, it could easily ruin the beauty and tradition of the sport. So I believed Hollywood Park should use the Trakus system, a GPS technology system for every racehorses in every race. It is a better system to identify the racehorses for the fans instead of the Horse Printing System.

08 Apr 2010 1:54 AM

I think overall, it was stupid, all except for the orange one, and he was kind of cool looking. lol.

08 Apr 2010 1:56 AM
Kate Hunter

Here in Japan the Jockeys wear colored hats. The hats are not part of the silks but each is color coded with the post position.

1- white

2 - black

3 - red

4 - blue

5 - yellow

6 - green

7 - orange

8 - pink

Then if there are more horses than that they start to  double up on the last few colors.

Seems to work fine, and isn't embarrassing.

08 Apr 2010 4:49 AM

Oh Gee, Adam...thanks for posting that April 1st date after I was dumbstruck by the very idea.  Some of us are just that thick! wasn't bad enough Google nailed me with "Topeka", you've gotten me on a spinning merry-go-round...and usually no one nails me on April Fool's Day.  (Although I did have a good chuckle when I sent my kids to wait for the school bus...on a Saturday)

08 Apr 2010 8:21 AM

Slew - Thanks for being a good sport and in your defense I posted this like five days after April 1st, so it was misleading.

Kate - I didn't know that, thanks for filling me in! Could you send me an update on Pyro? How's my boy doing over there?

08 Apr 2010 8:51 AM
Can the straps on crocs be taken off? :Hyperstore International

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10 Apr 2010 5:18 AM

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