I am an unashamed animal lover, so I have a sort of love/hate feeling about the horse racing industry.
I think the animals are magnificent but I've always had trouble with the business side of the racing world. Bad things happen to horses who don't measure up or can't perform any more. So I was eager to talk to Michael Blowen who runs Old Friends, the retirement home for race horses to see how he squares his love of the animals with the reality of the business. Turns out he's troubled about it too -- and that's what motivates him to rescue as many horses as he can. You can see how he's doing it tonight on the Evening News.
It is important to remember that there are some responsible owners who do provide for their horses after the animals' productive years have passed. But Blowen believes there aren't enough.
His facility is amazing. He has about 20 horses there, many of them you might remember from their glory days. Blowen has this marvelous relationship with them. He knows each one, knows their personalities, and is eager to meet their needs. He uses words like dignity and respect when he talks about what he wants to give these horses.
I left there grateful for the opportunity to meet him (AND the horses!)