Cozmic One, a son of Bernardini out of 2010 Horse of the Year Zenyatta, only made $5,770 in five starts but he could make up for that when he competes in the Retired Racehorse Project’s $100,000 Thoroughbred Makeover Oct. 4-7, 2018 at the Kentucky Horse Park.
However, in order to receive the $10,000 winner’s share of the grand prize, an equine competitor must learn a new discipline within 10 months, then compete and win one of the 10 makeover disciplines, and finally be selected by fans as “America’s Most Wanted Thoroughbred.”
Cozmic One may already have a leg up on the competition in the popularity contest. He also gets the benefit of being in the capable hands of three-time Makeover divisional winner Isabela de Sousa. De Sousa and her family run de Sousa Stables near Lexington and focus on hunter/jumpers and retraining off-track Thoroughbreds.
“With the help of David Ingordo, we acquired Cozmic One,” de Sousa said. “We asked about the horse last year, and now that the owners were ready to try a new career for him they gave us the chance with the horse.”
A homebred for Jerry and Ann Moss, whose silks Zenyatta carried to 19 wins, the 5-year-old Cozmic One has been gelded and currently is settling into his new home.
“We really appreciate that they entrusted us with this horse, and we are very excited about getting him started after we let him down for a few weeks,” de Sousa said. “We just have to see how it goes. Hopefully, he will do well for us and make it to the makeover, we just have to see how he does.”
While accepted makeover trainers have until Aug. 1 to enter a horse and decide on a discipline or two to compete in, de Sousa is already thinking Cozmic One will be a hunter/jumper.
“I like the way he is made,” she said. “Looks like he’s maybe a good candidate for hunter/jumper or maybe an equitation horse, but we will only know after we get him going. Sometimes even then we are not sure what they will do best.”
The junior rider won last year’s show jumping division on Late Night Mark, who earned almost $75,000 for racing owners Jim and Susan Hill; took the 2016 jumping division on Carajillo, a Siena Farm homebred previously trained by Todd Pletcher; and won the 2015 jumping division on another Pletcher-trained Siena Farm homebred, Grade 2-placed Dewey Square.
Although there will most likely be a lot of eyes on de Sousa and Cozmic One, the rider is just looking forward to competing at the event again.
“We are just happy to continue supporting the RRP,” she said. “Hopefully, we will get there and be competitive since there are a lot of good horses and good trainers going to that show.”