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The Horse That Changed My Life | Zac Kennedy - The Dominyunator

"He's made this the best year for me"
When other kids his age were playing video games or kicking around a soccer ball, Zac Kennedy was watching the Quarter Horse races at Ajax Downs as a newly-turned teenager.

Now 21, the young man is a familiar face at Canada’s biggest Quarter Horse track as a team member for trainer Bryn Robertson and as a racing fan. Kennedy also manages a show horse stable in Peterbrorough and is an avid fan of all breeds of horse racing; he’s already making his list for favourite horses for next year’s Kentucky Derby.

“I love the atmosphere of the track and the people I get to meet there,” said Kennedy, who was born and raised in Ajax. “It's a fun place to spend a day.”

It was 2008 when Kennedy and his uncle were on a bike ride and saw a horse trailer from the Joe Tavares racing stable driving past. They had never been to the track and decided to make an afternoon of it.
Kennedy has almost never missed a day since then.

While studying sports management in school, Kennedy realized he wanted to work with horses and he joined racing stables of Greg Watson and then Scott Reid in the last few years. He also met Bryn and Carol Robertson, owners of Hillerin Farm in Hillsburgh, ON.

"I dove headfirst into working with the racehorses," said Kennedy. "I wanted to take in as much as I could right away."

This year, Kennedy has been paddocking horses on race day for the Robertsons, one of those being The Dominyunator, a lanky sorrel 3-year-old who won an allowance race in June the first time Kennedy took him to a race.The pair have since come back to win another allowance race.

"He's made this the best year for me,' said Kennedy. "He's basically a simple horse and I love that I get to do stuff with him. He loves the attention and he loves to play."

The Dominyunator was born at Hillerin, bred by Carol and her daughter-in-law Jaime, and Kennedy makes a point to visit the gelding at the farm between races.

"I love to go visit him at the farm, the Robertsons have been very good to me that way."

Kennedy also had a chance to paddock Had to Be Ivory for the family on July 9 and the 2-year-old gelding went out and won the John Deere Juvenile Challenge.

"I am the only one in my family in racing, it's a passion I love and it's my own thing."

Kennedy looks to have a bright future in Ontario racing and keep an eye out for him and the horse who changed his life, The Dominyunator.

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