Starting to ride when she was only fifteen years old, Paige Montayne always wanted to be involved with horses from her early childhood, but little did she know that it would lead to her working with a Kentucky Derby qualifying thoroughbred.
Graduating from SUNY Cobleskill last May with a Bachelor's in Technology in the Animal Science program, Paige has since had the opportunity to work for George Weaver in Elmont, New York, with Assistant Trainer Blair Golen.
|A girl and her horse.|
Paige poses with Tencendur.
It is there that she started working with Tencendur, a three year old colt nicknamed Monster for his impressive stature. Placing second in the Wood Memorial earlier this month, Tencendur earned a spot in the big race at Churchill Downs next weekend.
Describing the thoroughbred as a war horse, Ms. Montayne is responsible for ponying Tencendur when trainer Blair Golen takes him out on the track. Although a presumptuous horse, Paige said Tencendur just "keeps getting better and better."
Originally from Saratoga Springs, Montayne use to ride her bike by the Saratoga Race Track for fun. She had always wanted to ride horses when she was young, but her mom had "tried everything possible to not have me ride," a battle which Paige won in the end.
Calling herself lucky for having grown up in Saratoga, a "horse lovers dream" by her account, Ms. Montayne moved on to SUNY Cobleskill where she rode on the hunt seat team and was awarded a scholarship for two straight years by the New York Breeders Thoroughbred Development Fund.
The gravity of Tencendur's success, however, has not been lost on Paige.
Excited because "not many people get to the experience this," Montayne has nothing but love for the thoroughbred, who she admiringly described as a fun horse that loves to play and jump around a little bit.
However, her time with Tencendur is drawing to a close. Resuming her role as a veterinary assistant for Teigland, Franklin and Brokken back in Saratoga Springs, Paige will not be accompanying Tencendur and company to Kentucky for the coming race.
Still, having had the opportunity to work with a thoroughbred of Tencendur's potential less than just one year after graduation from Cobleskill, Ms. Montayne has already accomplished more than most in her field ever will.
Reflecting on her time with the derby qualifier, Paige commented, "I am very lucky to have worked with him."