Training Ground: Couple finds success with thoroughbred farm

Published 12:10 pm Saturday, February 27, 2021

The daytime temperature was 19 degrees on Wednesday and snow surrounded Eric and Brooklyn Foster’s barn with 17 thoroughbreds that were waiting their turn for their daily workout.

“With the weather like it is, we’ve been lucky to be able to jog the horses,” Eric Foster said. “…The horses can hardly handle more than a day or two of not doing anything. They’re such an athlete they want to be moving all the time.”

During the past seven years, the Fosters have been training racehorses at their 16-acre Utica farm on U.S. 431. They even have a small, oval track for running, galloping and breezing the horses.

Prior to getting into the racehorse business, Eric Foster, 43, worked as a construction welder but had a background in horses.

As a youth, Eric Foster was a barrel racer and then at age 17 he was galloping and exercising horses for other thoroughbred trainers.

Brooklyn Foster said she lived on a farm when she was young but that she hadn’t spent much time around racehorses until she met her husband. And when she was laid off from her job a few years ago, she joined her husband full-time in their Foster Family Racing business.

She said it became a “sink or swim” venture.

“I’m all for goals and dreams and I knew he was passionate about it,” Brooklyn Foster said. “And that’s just very contagious — his passion, his drive to be successful. …Although I grew up on a farm, the competition part of what we do was very, very new to me. I’ve had a pretty big learning curve but I’m pretty proud of us.”

Together they have built up their stable of thoroughbreds by owning their own horses, by partnering with local investors and by what’s considered the most important part of racing — winning.