Dr. Stacy B. Smitherman
Member of: AETA, AQHA, AVMA, APHA,
Certified EIA Coggins Lab & USDA Health Inspections
Licensed in Texas & Oklahoma
Texas A & M Graduate
Open weekdays 8 AM-5 PM
8290 FM 3178
Centerville, TX 75833
It was the workout heard around the racing world. On June 30, Leading Spirit, one of the most popular and talented horses of this young century, posted what champion trainer Paul Jones described as the fastest 350-yard gate he had ever seen at Los Alamitos.
eading Spirit's drill was a blistering :17.50 - a performance that was so impressive that the 2005 champion 2-year-old gelding will now make his first start in 14 months in the 440-yard Bank of America California Regional Challenge Saturday at Los Alamitos.
Leading Spirit & Dr. Stacy Smitherman, DVM
Owned by Dr. Barry Thompson and Dan and Jolene Urschel's, Leading Spirit first captured the public's imagination after winning his first seven starts, including the first three Grade 1 futurities contested in New Mexico. Leading Spirit's sophomore season, however, ended after only two races. Leading Spirit's owners opted instead for the gelding to undergo the same successful stem cell surgery as Be A Bono.
The procedure had been used to repair bowed tendons in horses before but Be A Bono was the first case in which a small sample of a horse's stem cells were injected back into the patient in order to regenerate damaged bone and cartilage. The surgery worked wonders for Be A Bono, as the 2004 World Champion returned to win the Vessels Maturity, Spencer Childers Handicap, and Go Man Go Handicap in 2006. The Urschels and Dr. Thompson hope that the surgery produces similar results with Leading Spirit.
"I'm a realist," Dr. Thompson said. "I know that Leading Spirit could have his last race at any time. Paul thinks he's ready to go and I know that he has him in A+ shape. Leading Spirit is like a family friend. He's the smartest horse that I've ever been around, so I feel confident that he'll perform well and I'm hopeful that he will win."
Dr. Thompson is aware that Leading Spirit will be facing an outstanding field in his return bow. "Apollitical Time, Furyofthewind, Catchmeinyourdreams, Strawkins, etc. It's a great field and I think Leading Spirit will be competitive. I'm not sure we know what his capabilities are right now. He is more mature, more muscular, and faster than he's ever been. He's a special animal. I know that he will run his guts out.
"This horse has provided so many thrills for me and my family. I'm 71-year-old and my wife and I've been blessed with a large family. Our six granddaughters and grandsons, four children and their spouses are all big fans of Leading Spirit. I've never raced at Los Alamitos before, so it is special to be involved in a race at this icon track."
Leading Spirit, who has had three surgeries in total, had some fat removed from his left buttock according to Dr. Thompson. The cells were grown in California and then shipped to Dr. Stacy Smitherman, DVM, in Centerville, Texas. Dr. Smitherman then injected four million stem cells into Leading Spirit's front knees and pasterns. And so far everything looks good.
"Be A Bono inspired (us) to try," Dr. Thompson admitted.
Prior commitments will prevent Dr. Thompson from traveling from his home state of Texas to enjoy Leading Spirit return to the track. Instead, his son-in-law, Robert Fimble, and ranch manager, Frankie Karlik, will be in The Vessels Club on Saturday night.
"I'll be very envious," Dr. Thompson added. "I'll be watching the race on TV and what a thrill it will to see Leading Spirit at Los Alamitos."
Dr. Smitherman's Clinic offers complete reproductive services. His dedication and commitment are reflected in his positive pregnancy successes. His knowledge in Equine Reproductive needs is extensive. He will evaluate your mare and give a professional opinion on your options. He is a member of American Embryo Transfer Association"AETA" since October 2002. Attends Annual Conferences for Continued Education in order to maintain the most current knowledge available.
The services we provide include: Stallion Collection, shipping, breeding with fresh, cooled or frozen semen, rectally guided deep horn insemination, endoscopic guided insemination, and embryo transfer. We specialize in getting a live foal from your problem mare.
He offers Stallion Training(Teaching a Stallion to be collected), if needed also.
We also have large over sized Foal Out Stalls to accommodate your Mare during her delivery.
Stoneridge Veterinary also offers Lameness Evaluations in order to keep your Horse Performing at its best. Dr. Smitherman's keen eye and vast knowledge helps you stay informed. Digital X-Ray's are available on site allowing Dr. Smitherman to make an informed diagnosis.
Endoscopic Exams are also offered here at the clinic:
What is Endoscopy?
Endoscopy involves using a small camera on the end of a tube, called an endoscope, to take images of the body as it is passed along the desired surface (i.e. esophagus, airway). Upper and lower airway endoscopy involve examining the airways (trachea) and pharyngeal regions, including the guttural pouches. Gastroscopy involves passing the endoscope down the esophagus to the stomach. (Temporally Unavailable)
Your Horses Health is important! Annual Vaccines, Consistent Worming Schedule, & Dental Care performed on a regular basis will keep your horse healthy and performing at its best. We are here to help you and provide all the services you need to keep your horse's health at its best.
An Injection within the joint (intra-articular) is performen to administer one or more drugs or agents directly into a joint in a sterile manner. The two most common reasons for a Veterinarian to perform a joint injection are to anesthetize or "block" a joint during a lameness examination or to medicate a joint to help keep horses' joints, particularly those of athletic horses, comfortable and pain free.
Dr. Smitherman performing ultrasound on mare.