JESSAMINE COUNTY, Ky. – It may be chilly outside, but spring has sprung on horse farms in the Bluegrass as foaling season has officially begun.
The first filly of the Bluegrass was born Jan. 5 at 118 pounds and 10 hands tall at Taylor Made Farm in Jessamine County.
"She is full of spunk. She's like her mom, she's got a little bit of sass but she's gonna be a handful," explained Taylor Made Farm Broodmare Division Manager Melissa Couture.
This filly is out of Foolish Ways (IRE) by Speightown and is known for now as "Foolish Ways 20."
— Claire Kopsky (@ClaireMKopsky) January 13, 2020
"We just call this baby by her mother's name or her dam's name, and so her dam's named Foolish Ways. So how we don't get that mixed up, his mom only has one per year, so Foolish Ways 2020 would be what we call her. So, Foolish Ways 20," said Taylor Made Farm Experience Director Laura Richard.
The filly will receive her real name by her owner.
Even though she was born on Jan. 5, the Jockey Club says she was actually born January 1.
"The Jockey Club deems that all thoroughbred racehorses registered through them have a Jan. 1 birthday, no matter if you're born in March, or yesterday," explained Richard. "So, why that is, is I think about races, big races like the Kentucky Derby. That's a 3-year-old race, so if you had a baby born, say, in November, that baby wouldn't be very competitive."
With the goal of most thoroughbreds to be race-eligible, the horse industry takes breeding very seriously.
"Mares are seasonal breeders, they need about 16 hours of light to start cycling so that they're ready for the shed February 14. Where the birthday of fouls – of thoroughbred fouls is January 1. We have to start breeding by February 14, and it's usually earlier requires we usually cycle, March, April is when they actually start," said Couture.
Anyone can visit the new filly at Taylor Made Farm and dozens of other farms across the Bluegrass.
"There's 32 farms within horse country. If you haven't heard about that before, it's kind of like the bourbon trail but for horses. And we would be so excited if you guys would come visit us. Our filly would love to see you all. And you can get your tickets anytime you'd like for us or any of the other farms at visithorsecountry.com, " said Richard.
This story was originally published by Claire Kopsky at WLEX.