Mel and Al
Washington-bred gelding (b. 2009)
By Matty G-Go for Jackie
Career (2011-2012): 10-1-1-1 $7,275

Mel and Al has a new home in eastern Washington and a new career in front of him.  He now resides at Sandra Lemon's farm in Clarkston, 30 miles south of Pullman on the Washington-Idaho border.

It wasn't long ago, just last season that he was racing well at Emerald Downs.  He won two straight route races last summer, though disqualified from one.

Trainer Mike Puhich felt he got the best out of Mel and Al and heard about a great potential situation for life after racing.

"Mel tried hard and did about the best he could do at the track," said Puhich.  We found out about a great opportunity for a new career and everybody was on board."

It was Pegasus Syndicate One that campaigned Mel and Al and they loved him, still do.  One of the owners, Dean Ellis, knew from experience that the horse would have a great new home.

"I met Sandra Lemon at Reber Ranch some years ago and found out that if she has room, you'd do well sending your retired horse to her," said Ellis.  She cares for them, rides them, trains them and re-trains them.  She does a fantastic job."

Ellis explains a visit to meet Mel and Al at Pegasus sealed the deal.

"Sandra and her daughter Sammy visited Pegasus last year and fell in love with the place", said Ellis.  "They took a tour of the facility, greeted every horse and every horse was happy to see them.  Mel and Al was one of those horses."

Lemon keeps a number of horses on her five acres, rides for enjoyment and loves Thoroughbreds.  Daughter Sammy is involved in high school rodeo and Central Idaho Rodeo Association and is teaching Mel and Al new lessons.

"We loved his personality right away," said Sandra Lemon.  He's a sweet horse, has a great attitude and very willing to learn anything you put in front of him.  This year, he's training with Sammy in barrel racing for rodeo, gaming events and other competitions."

Ellis keeps up on Mel and Al's progress and gets frequent pictures of Sammy working with him.

"I'm on Facebook every day looking at new pictures of Mel and Al.  He's doing great over there with the Lemons," said Ellis.  "It's a perfect match!"

Mel and Al - happy in a new career in eastern Washington!

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