Lyndsey Roi’22 speaks on her role in the 2021 Standardbred Horse Sale Company’s Annual Yearling Sale

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Lyndsey Roi’22, an equine science and breeding major, speaks on her role in the 2021 Standardbred Horse Sale Company’s Yearling Sale 

Every year DelVal equine students participate in the Standardbred Horse Sale Company’s Yearling Sale. This year, on Nov. 8 through Nov. 12, DelVal Equine generated the largest gross profit the University’s Equine Program has ever made. Four yearlings were sold on Wednesday, Nov. 10. DelVal equine students are involved in the selling process from start to finish. Net proceeds from the sale go toward supporting DelVal’s Breeding Center programs.

The Standardbred Horse Sale Company’s Annual Yearling Sale is a great experience for someone who is interested in learning more about how horses are sold in the racing community. I love going as I’ve been going since my sophomore year (senior now). From the people you get to work with to the horses you get to meet, it’s a fun, hardworking job when you work for the Standardbred Sales Company or even one of the consigners. If you’re in the equine industry, it’s a great experience to see how a professional sale runs. 

This year was a little different for me as I was a part of DelVal’s yearling sale management class. This semester I had the opportunity to prepare one of the yearlings at the Breeding Center, “Sydney”, for the sale. I did have a partner to help, Alli Fisher, which was great. This meant we had to get her used to people touching her, grooming her, clipping, bathing, and anything else in between. We also had to lunge her in the round pen for exercise each week and bring her and her yearling friends to the equestrian center's exerciser five days a week. Furthermore, we would have sale inspections each week where we were graded by our instructor on how professional our yearlings were, from behavior to cleanliness. So being a part of this class showed me how much time and work really needs to go into the horses being sold at the Standardbred Harrisburg Sale. It made me appreciate Delaware Valley University’s yearlings being sold at the sale so much more since the yearlings were handled and trained majority by us, the students. 

Come sale time we had to make videos for each yearling so people could see them move. We also had to work on loading and prepping the trailer for the sale week. Once that was done, Sydney and the rest were loaded up and were off to Harrisburg. Once there, the yearling sale management class and Jenna Reigle, the breeding centers barn manager, would unload and set up the stalls for the week ahead. Set up involved unloading horses, grooming boxes, and decor which makes everything look pretty when potential buyers would come to look at our horses. While there, our role as students was to care for the horses, have them look professional all the time, and be professional when talking to potential buyers. When someone wanted to look at a yearling we owned, one of us would bring them out of their stall and stand them as square as possible as the people would look and touch the yearlings to see if they wanted to bid on them when the time comes. 

The sale was a week long, so these actions would happen for the first couple of days until it was time to sell our yearlings. Once they were sold, we packed up DelVal's area and gave our horses one last kiss goodbye. It's a bittersweet moment to see the horse that you worked so hard on leave for a new home, but everyone in the class knows they will go on to have great careers in the Standardbred racing industry. 

Other than working for Delaware Valley University, I also worked for the Standardbred Sales company who runs the entire sale. I've worked with them the past three years and every year has been amazing. They are a great team to be involved with as everyone's always having fun. Their number one priority is safety so if you are working for them and you don't feel comfortable taking a horse from one place to another then you don't have to. They are very conscious about keeping everyone safe and happy. They do very well at keeping things running smoothly and customers happy too. Working for them is an eye-opening experience if you've never worked an equine sale before. You get to handle the yearlings that are sold as we had to move them to different stalls where they waited to be picked up from their new owners. You also get to lead horses to the sales ring, or you can tag the horses when they're done being sold as this helps keep track of the horses and keeps everything organized.

Overall, it is a great atmosphere to be a part of. It's almost like a family atmosphere as everyone is looking out for each other since horses can be dangerous animals to work with. I think that's what I love the most about the sale. The people who are involved and the community they create every year are always very welcoming. You get to see people that come back every year and make friends that you can have for a long time. We're all there for one thing, the love of horses. That love of horses brings so much joy and passion that people feel connected and a part of something bigger!

Lille, a dark brown horse stands in the Standardbred Horse Sale's Company's venue. The photo is a full body side profile.
Credit: Adam Strom.