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More Than a Good Deed

A 12-year-old boy claims a 12-year-old horse for retirement

“What you do makes a difference, and you have to decide what kind of difference you want to make.” —Jane Goodall

Fredrick Spanabel used his own money to make sure that Good Credentials has a good retirement.

By Jen Roytz Photos courtesy Gail Hirt

It takes some people the better part of a lifetime to figure out what type of lasting mark they want to make on the world. Twelve-year-old Fredrick Spanabel seems to be ahead of the curve. Fredrick has a heart for animals and a mind for business. In his family’s Hazel Park shed row, you can find Finn B Cool, who is Fredrick’s racehorse among his father’s 25 in training. You can also find a menagerie of other animals, including pigeons, chickens, rabbits and a raccoon, in Fredrick’s makeshift animal rescue and rehabilitation area. While Fredrick is saving most of the earnings from Finn B Cool and any other horse he owns for his future college expenses, exceptions are made when a situation warrants it, as was the case on July 2 at the Detroit area track. With his dad listed as the trainer, Fredrick claimed 12-year-old Good Credentials with the sole intention of permanently retiring him from racing.

When Plans A and B Don’t Work, Try Plan C Bred in Kentucky by Pin Oak Stud, Good Credentials spent his career in the claiming ranks at tracks like Evangeline Downs, Hawthorne Race Course and Thistledown and made an honest living, retiring at age 7 with a record of 56-5-12-8 and earnings of $47,402. 38 AMERICAN RACEHORSE • SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER 2016

American Racehorse - September/October 2016  

This issue of American Racehorse magazine features a long-form article about the magic of Ak-Sar-Ben racetrack in Omaha, Nebraska, plus a lo...