Happy 5th birthday to Olympic Maize and Happy 7th birthday to Olympic Blue!
For the purposes of keeping track of all racehorses’ ages, they are all considered to have their birthday on January 1. This means if a foal is born on January 2, 2016, he will officially be one year old today. It also means that if a foal was born on December 31, 2016, her would also be officially one year old today (even though he’s actually only a few hours old!).
Corny was born in January and Blue was born in February. That’s a cold time of the year to be a baby horse! However, when it is time to race as 2 and 3 year olds, Blue and Corny would have potentially been bigger, stronger, and more mature, than their competition that was born in the spring.
Some other breeds have adopted the January 1 birthday rule as well. Mostly breeds that compete in racing or futurities. Breeders who aren’t concerned about these type of competitions tend to have foals in the late spring and summer months. That way they don’t have to be as concerned about keeping a tiny foal warm, and it’s easier to get a mare pregnant in the spring, summer, and fall.
That’s the way we do it in the northern hemisphere. In the southern hemisphere, all racehorses are given August 1 birthdays.