The Chari-TEE program is an initiative from Old Smoke Clothing Co. that aims to celebrate horse racing, while providing support to the organizations that are the backbone of the industry. Each month, Old Smoke proudly promotes and supports a different horse racing charity. In addition to providing web hosting and promotional services, Old Smoke donates a portion of the month’s proceeds from all sales of a designated shirt to that month’s selected charity.
Old Smoke Clothing Co. is based in Saratoga Springs, NY and run by a small team of horse racing enthusiasts including Co-Founder Kurt Rossner.
What was the inspiration behind the Sport of Kings T-shirt? Which came first: the slogan or the graphic?
This was actually the first design we ever completed, as it is our official logo. When launching the company, we wanted to convey that our brand was going to “Celebrate the Sport of Kings.” So, we had the slogan first, then we came across a photograph of Man ‘o War and absolutely fell in love with it. This picture instantly became the inspiration for our logo.
How many different designs were created before landing on this one?
The initial design that we came up with actually featured a copy of an old photograph of John “Old Smoke” Morrissey (the inspiration behind our name), not Man o’ War. We had numerous versions of the design as we played around with a lot of old photographs. In the end, we were really happy to settle on Man ‘o War as the focal point of the design. Not to mention, we had a blast going through all of the historic photos we were able to uncover!
What’s the message you sought to convey with the design?
Simple ... convey the history and a sense of celebration of our great sport, all in one spot. Our team was obsessed with one specific Man ‘o War portrait, and we were able to successfully incorporate it into the design!
How has the T-shirt been received to date?
This shirt has consistently been one of our best sellers. We hope it continues to resonate with fans and helps to convey what our brand is all about … celebrating the Sport of Kings!
Which person in racing would you most like to see wearing this T-shirt?
Acacia Courtney of course! We are thrilled to partner with Acacia this month to help raise awareness for all the great work she and her mother, Sherrie, are doing with Racing for Home.
Racing for Home, Inc. is based in Connecticut and run by the mother-daughter team of Sherrie and Acacia Courtney.
What is the mission of your charity?
Racing for Home Inc. is dedicated to retraining, re-homing, and rehabilitating Off-Track Thoroughbreds. We help OTTB’s transition into new careers off the racetrack, find their forever homes, and we also provide sanctuary for those who cannot find a new vocation. We are accredited by the Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance (TAA), and we do it all!
Explain the importance of the partnership with Old Smoke to raise awareness for your cause
and raise revenues from the T-shirt sales?
We are so humbled to be partnering with Old Smoke! We are a small, aftercare organization, with 11 horses currently in our care, and that often makes it more challenging to raise funds and awareness. This is a huge opportunity for us to be able to spread the word and will be tremendously helpful in caring for some of our horses who have come off the track with injuries, such as Uno Mas Modelo’s bowed tendons or Trance’s arthritis. Thank you, Old Smoke!
How can people continue to support your mission?
We accept donations through PayPal or mailed, and all that information can be found on our website, which is racingforhomeinc.com. We are also active on social media at @racingforhome on Twitter and @racingforhomeinc on Instagram!