Fawkes began his life in March 2004 on the east coast as a racehorse.
After his retirement, his nice owner took him home to the breeding facility where he lived in a really big field and played with the other retirees and yearlings.
I had just ended a lease and was coming up empty on part leases. So I decided to adopt an ex-racehorse because...um, insert rational thought process here. I think mostly it was because I spent my youth on OTTBs and was training with a person with a real passion for ex-racers at the time, who promised to help us out. We figured the worse case scenario was we trained him up and re-sold him. Off we went and after a frustrating few months, I gave up on CO and widened my search.
I found Fawkes, still going by Admiral at the time, through CANTER. He was 7, getting close to 8, and enjoying his retired life.
I named him Fawkes after the lightning bolt shaped mark on his forehead, reminiscent of Harry Potter's scar. I figured a bright chestnut could use a phoenix name. We came a long way in 3.5 years of actual blood, sweat, and tears. He is athletic, spooky, and kind of a complicated animal. He would occasionally pack a total beginner around walk/trot, but then have a total meltdown cantering an 18' vertical.