ALFIE unraced skewbald gelding owned by Michelle Cottee

Alfie came to Michelle having been found abandoned following an accident 6 years ago, he was 3 years old and still entire.  Michelle was immediately taken by his kind and gentle nature and was smitten. Initially she thought if he recovered sound from his injuries then he would make a nice hack. By now , Alfie has demonstrated that he can do that an much more besides!


When Alfie first arrived with Michelle he spent most of the time pacing, when ridden he couldn’t do a 2 beat diagonal trot.  By now he has progressed beautifully but still paces on occasion (for example, when he goes on hound exercise). He keeps up with everyone else’s canter and often overtakes them!

Alfie and Michelle have enjoyed so much – show jumping, arena eventing, on line dressage, XC schooling, pleasure rides, hound exercise and represented their local British Riding Club. Competitively Alfie has been placed every time he has been out (except once!). Alfie and Michelle can also be seen regularly on a local gallop, where the trainer who owns the gallop, marvels at his speed.

Michelle has in the past ridden and trained everything from natives, heavy horses, Thoroughbreds (ex racehorses), warmbloods, Iberians but when Alfie came into her life, he completely changed her outlook about Standardbreds. She feels that the only limitation to what these horses can do is people’s attitude to the breed. She goes on to say “I have never trained a breed who are so willing, clever and to be perfectly honest fun! Which at the end of the day, isn’t that what the majority of us want? I think Standardbreds are amazing.  I just wished more people realised that they are capable of everything. This breed can do anything and everything and with an extra gait!”

MIchelle has been so impressed with her Standardbred that she has now bought herself another one – Harris. You can read about Harris is another post.

Standardbreds Off the Race Track

Although Standardbreds are primarily bred for harness racing, as a breed they are capable of excelling at a variety of different disciplines and pursuits whether that be for pleasure purposes or competitively.

In this section of our website, STAGBI would like to showcase some of the wonderful Standardbreds who have gone on to add a variety of different skills to their repertoires irrespective of whether they achieved success on the racetrack or not.

We’d love to hear about your Standardbred

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More stories from Standardbreds Out of Racing


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