Racehorse ownership is a personal decision. For some, a racehorse is a financial investment and a way to diversify their portfolio. Others buy a racehorse to experience the thrills of horse racing and the chance to learn more about horse racing behind the scenes.
Before you take the plunge and buy a racehorse, you need to understand exactly why you want to own a horse in the first place.
Why do I want to buy a racehorse?
This is the single most important question you need to ask yourself before you invest in a racehorse. Do you want to make major decisions, or leave that up to more seasoned horsemen? Do you want to see your horse train between races, or are you most interested in watching him thunder across the finish line?
For me, owning a racehorse is like buying a season ticket to a professional sports team. I don’t expect to make a dime, but I do hope for years of excitement. Unlike a sports team, however, I can actually meet the athletes, trainers and fellow owners. Furthermore, if my horse does win a major stakes race, I get to share in the earnings and take my picture in the winner’s circle! I cannot get any of that with the Minnesota Vikings*.
Make a list: Why do you want to buy a racehorse?
Before you search for the next Triple Crown champion, I suggest you make a list of all the reasons you want to invest in a racehorse. You can read more about why I want to buy a racehorse, but here is a simplified list:
- Learn the thoroughbred racing industry inside and out
- Learn how horses train, live and prepare for races
- Watch my horse mature and grow from a foal to (hopefully) a champion thoroughbred
- Meet industry insiders and learn everything there is to know about horse racing
- Participate in pre-race gatherings in the barns and paddock when my horse races
My list helped me determine my next steps. Notice three of my top five revolve around learning. Therefore, I need to find a racing syndicate that allows me to be hands on with the ownership process, while leaving the big management decisions up to seasoned professionals.
Furthermore, I want to watch a foal grow and develop. Many syndicates do not invest in foals as they are unknown commodities. On the flip side, a foal is typically a cheaper initial investment as it is riskier than a mature horse. Purchasing a foal will save me money in the short term, but also narrows my list of horse racing syndicates.
Finally, I want to actively watch my horse both during and between races. Therefore, I must find a horse who lives, trains and races near me. Fortunately, I live in Kentucky, home of Churchill Downs and the center of the horse racing universe. Fear not future racehorse owner. Although you may not be blessed to live in The Bluegrass State, several thoroughbred syndicates operate throughout the country.
Now I am able to narrow down my list of thoroughbred syndicates simply by asking myself why I want to buy a racehorse. Why do you want to buy a racehorse? Let me know in the comments below or Tweet me!
* Disclaimer: Poor Horseman makes every effort to provide 100% accurate information. Please forgive me for pretending the Minnesota Vikings could ever win the Super Bowl.