Tinys First Pepsi Thrives in Post-Racing Career
The multiple stakes winner is a stable pony at Indiana Grand.
July 31, 2017
Most trainers are faced with a decision about a horse’s future at some point in their career, and that day arrived for trainer Ron Brown this summer.
Tinys First Pepsi has been part of the Brown stable since the sorrel gelding's 2-year-old season. Now 7, Tinys First Pepsi still had the desire to race, but after he earned $300,000 during his career, the Indiana-bred champion had limited options on the racetrack.
Tinys First Pepsi finished sixth in what would be his final start on September 10, 2016. Although he was only beaten one-half length for the win, Brown knew it was time to consider retiring the gelded son of the Corona Cartel stallion Tinys First Corona.
“He had just got to where he was a step slow,” said Brown. “We turned him out for almost a year and although he’s not going to race, he still has the mindset to work. I’m tickled to death to find another career for him.”
Tinys First Pepsi was put into training as the stable’s pony horse and has excelled at his new position with the barn. Brown has even turned down offers already from other trainers looking for a dependable pony horse, but Brown isn’t looking to move him out of his sight.
“I bought him and (multiple stakes winner) Pistolpacking Pepsi as yearlings from the same guy,” said Brown. “In fact, ‘Tiny’ was my first Quarter Horse. He’s such a kind horse and loved being a racehorse. He just needed a job. Not all retired racehorses can find a job like this, but from day one he took to it.”
Tinys First Pepsi is now the go-to horse for all of Brown’s Thoroughbreds and Quarter Horses stabled at Indiana Grand. He even serves as the pony for Pistolpacking Pepsi, another Indiana champion in the Quarter Horse ranks for Brown. Between the two of them, the “Pepsi” boys have garnered Brown and his partner, Robert Ray, nearly $750,000 in purse earnings since 2012.
Tinys First Pepsi accounted for nearly $300,000 of that total, winning seven races during his career, including three stakes races. He started 33 times, all in Indiana. His biggest win was in the $117,400 Sterlie Bertram Memorial in 2013 as a 3-year-old.
Tinys First Pepsi's success led into Pistolpacking Pepsi coming on the scene in 2013, winning the Miss Roxie Little Futurity, a stakes that “Tiny” had won the previous season. With their success as two Indiana bred champions, “Tiny” and “Pistol” have been featured on the Brown’s Christmas card the past few years. It’s safe to say that both “Pepsi” boys have earned a home for the duration of their life with the Browns.
“If he (Tinys First Pepsi) had not worked out as a pony, he would have been a pasture ornament at our place,” said Brown, who has a 10-acre farm near Connersville, Indiana. “They will both have a home for life.”
Brown and his wife, Shirley, are actively involved in the day to day operations of their barn and are enjoying a “second career” of their own. The Browns owned and operated a very successful trucking business in Connersville before retiring and moving into the racing industry full time at the turn of the century. They started out with just a few Thoroughbreds and later added Quarter Horses to their daily routine. Since that time, Brown has implemented a new rule in the barn.
“We are all Pepsi drinkers in our barn,” smiled Brown. “No other soda brands are allowed."
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