The next day there was an email from a real person in New Zealand. Sydney's information had been found! His race name was Pick a Card. His dam was Cataluna (NZ), and his sire was Magic of Sydney (AUS). His birthdate is actually October 4, 2002. That makes Sydney 8 years old.
I also discovered that Sydney, or Pick a Card, has a race record. It's a dismal record, which is probably a good thing for me. Had he been a successful race horse, he never would have made the trip to the USA. He wouldn't have been tried as a hunter jumper here, and he wouldn't have ended up at Sport Equine. Had he not made the journey from New Zealand to Clovis, California, he wouldn't be standing in my barn as you read this. Here's to the horses at the back-of-the-pack!
Pick a Card was raced four times as a two-year-old in Catch Weight Races - (without restrictions as to weight). He finished near the back each time. Late in his two-year-old year he ran his first Maiden Catchweight Race (horses never having won and without restrictions as to weight), finishing second out of six horses. As a three-year-old he was raced in three qualifying races, and four actual races. Most of the time he was near the back, but he did manage a second place finish in one of his last qualifying races. Half-way through his three-year-old year, he was finished. He ran his last race in May 2006. I don't know much about horse racing, much less how they do it in New Zealand, but I did find some helpful information at Dummies.com.
I have a post coming about my first "heart horse." I have a sneaking suspicion that Pick a Card might be a "Heart Horse." I didn't post this, but during the first several days of being in my barn, he brought me to tears. The kind that just come welling up when you let out that last breath of tension and worry. He may well be the kindest and most gentle horse that I've ever owned. I think it is appropriate that my "Heart Horse" is called Pick a Card. I'll take the King of Hearts please.