Second Career Star: Feature Mason B
Second Career Star: Feature Mason B
The versatility of a racing Quarter Horse might not be more apparent than in a royally-bred gray gelding named Feature Mason B raised for the racetrack and now busy dancing in the elegant sport of dressage with his owner Lisa Montgomery of Dallas, Texas.
The well-bred Feature Mason B was bred by Bielau Oaks of Weimar, Texas, and is sired by Feature Mr Jess, the Grade 1-winning runner who has sired the earners of almost $30 million. Of course there’s the racehorses he has gotten, like legendary runners Heartswideopen ($1,885,283) and Jess You And I ($1,851,691), but also performance stars like Jess Featureme Quick, an earner of $687,155 on the racetrack and more than 37 points in the show arena.
Feature Mason B is out JA Codas Pride, a daughter of all-time leading sire and American Quarter Horse Hall of Fame member Dash For Cash, and the dam of runners such as JA Fast Lady ($146,946) and Cascada B ($51,759).
Feature Mason B made seven career starts on the racetrack, including contesting the trials of the prestigious Rainbow and All American futurities and notching a win at the historic Hialeah Park in Florida. He retired in 2013 with earnings of $3,975, and was acquired by his current owner in 2017.
Montgomery is an experienced horsewoman who was getting back into horse ownership after a hiatus due to other life demands, and found him listed with the SPCA after his then-owners had fallen on hard times.
“I have been around horses my whole life, and I’m the right kind of person to take on a project,” she said. ”He was obviously de-conditioned, but I could tell there was really good conformation under there. Then I went and met him and that was pretty much it.”
The two were instant friends, and she got the horse she calls “Theo“ back to full health.
“He is possibly the most polite horse I’ve ever interacted with,” she said.
The highly willing horse always tries to please his handlers, and is very smart, she said.
She remembers a cold day last winter when she put his cooler on him to keep him warm as they walked out to the arena to work. When she prepared to mount, she removed the cooler and placed it on the arena fence. He grabbed the cooler with his teeth and swung his head around, indicating he wanted it back on.
“So I had to put it back on until he’d warmed up a little bit,” she said with a laugh. “That’s a prime example of his communication skills.”
They board at a dressage barn in the Dallas, Texas, area, and Montgomery does most of the riding with the help of regular lessons with an instructor. They are currently competing at Training and First Level.
“I appreciate his Quarter Horse brain and his 150% work ethic,” Montgomery said. “We have a great time.”
In addition to their work in the dressage ring, Montgomery takes him trail riding, dabbles in jumping and just finds ways to enjoy him, and encourages others to not overlook a horse that might seem imperfect from the outside, but are perfect on the inside.
“I’ve never ridden another horse that has made me feel more safe,” Montgomery said. “We have a lot of fun. It’s a great time and I have a wonderful friend.”
Second Career Stars is an ongoing series on retired racing American Quarter Horses in new careers. If you know of a horse that should be featured, write to firstname.lastname@example.org. AQHA News and information is a service of the American Quarter Horse Association. For more news and information, follow @AQHA Racing on Twitter, "like" Q-Racing on Facebook, and visit www.aqha.com/racing.