We hope you have had a wonderful Summer! So many of you have asked about Templeton Farms and possible visits – while we are not yet ready for visitors, we excited to share with you a typical day in Ziconic’s OTTB life at a working Sport Horse Farm.
Templeton Farms Equestrian (TFE) is the realization of our good friend, Gina Bornino Miller’s dream to build a World-Class Sport Horse Training, Sales, and Breeding Facility for both horses and their riders along the California Central Coast. Dream Realized! On this beautiful 52-acre farm Gina and her late husband, Bill, built TFE along the Salinas aquifer, Templeton, CA. We believe that both horses and humans thrive here. In fact, Milyone, Zenyatta’s racing stablemate, has called TFE home for 7 ½ years.
One of the things we love about TFE is it is very welcoming, and horses settle in quickly. Ziconic is no different, he has quickly become right at home and is making friends – he constantly reminds us he is a very quick learner!
For us, when we arrive at the Farm, we immediately transcend into an equestrian experience that is at the intersection of horsey heaven, dressage and hunter/jumper athleticism, exceptional trainers, grooms, staff, and community.
TFE has 3 types of boarding; Ziconic lives in the Main Barn, which houses 24 spacious stalls with individual runs so the horses can freely walk outside – like having a private patio with your neighbors next door. Amenities in the barn include indoor and outdoor cross ties for grooming/tacking and bathing, theraplate, solarium, and personal tack lockers. And the team of grooms – which makes all this happen – are wonderful people with exceptional experience.
Ziconic starts his day about 6:00am when he goes on the walker for 1 hour. This gives him the opportunity to wake up, stretch his legs after being in his stall for the night, and work off some energy. This KRAFT walker is unique as it is an oval, so the horses are not walking on a circle the entire time which is better for their legs, joints, and natural balance.
After Ziconic finishes on the walker, he comes in to eat his breakfast and relax. About 9:00am, Ziconic goes out for morning grass turnout. Templeton Farms is one of the only equestrian facilities in California that has grass pastures all year round – we feel very lucky as this natural state is so good for Ziconic’s overall health, digestion, and well-being just grazing for the morning.
About 12:00pm, Ziconic comes in for lunch and has some time to relax before he has his daily exercise, Monday through Friday. About 2:00pm his Trainer, Sarah Pollock who we introduced in July 2019, will start grooming and tacking Ziconic for his workout.
Depending on day of the week, weather, and how Ziconic is doing in his training program, Sarah and Ziconic have a variety of options to leverage! She will gauge each day what is best suited for Ziconic’s progress. He usually starts his work with a walk around part of the 1-mile track which weaves throughout the Farm. Just like us humans, this warms him up.
Earlier in the week, they may work in the round pen or occasionally the free jump shoot. Mondays tend to be less structured work after having Saturday and Sunday off with just walker and grass turnout.
Ziconic Free Jumping with Sarah And Some Help From Virginia & Tiffany (Video Credit: Linda R. Moss)
Usually a day a week, also influenced by weather, Ziconic gets to work on the flat in the covered arena. Here he and Sarah can focus on their lead changes, balance, and building consistency with Ziconic’s gates. This is also fun as Ziconic gets to look at himself in the mirrors!
Ziconic & Sarah Perfecting Their Flat Work (Video Credit: Mikayla Vosseller)
We think Ziconic’s favorite work is when he can go in one of the two outdoor jumping courts and, in his mind, PLAY! It is here that they work on cavaletties and poles, low level jumps as Ziconic learns, and different gates and patterns around the jumps.
Ziconic & Sarah Working on Agility Over Poles (Video Credit: Linda R. Moss)
Lastly depending on weather, Sarah and Ziconic will either walk the track or go in the covered arena to cool down. And now for the TRUE FUN – bath time! During the warm, summer months Ziconic gets hosed down and groomed every day after his workout.
Ziconic Enjoying Playing with Sarah During His Bath (Video Credit: Linda R. Moss)
Typically, Ziconic finishes his bath and grooming by 3:30 or 4:00pm, returns to his stall to relax, and dinner is typically fed around 4:30pm. The horses are then in for the night.
We are forever grateful to Gina and Templeton Farms; without them, we do not know of another West Coast Sport Horse Farm of this caliber, multiple trainer options, and special community.