Official Symbols and Emblems of Alabama
Official State Horse
The racking horse is similiar to the Tennessee Walking Horse; it has a smooth, natural gait, is very strong, and has the ability to sustain a rapid pace for long periods of time. The origins of the Racking Horse date back to the birth of our nation. The horse's popularity grew on Southern plantations when it was learned that it could be ridden comfortably for hours.
The "rack" of the Racking Horse is a bi-lateral four-beat gait which is neither a pace nor a trot. It is often called a "single-foot" because only one foot strikes the ground at a time. The Racking Horse comes by this gait as naturally as walking or striking a bond trot comes to other breeds. This horse is not to be confused with other breeds in which the "rack" is an artificially achieved gait resulting from special training.
Beginning riders find that the Racking Horse is a great horse to use when learning to ride, not only for its extremely comfortable ride, but also because of its unusual friendliness to humans.
The Racking Horse is attractive and gracefully built with a long sloping neck, full flanks, wellboned, smooth legs and finely textured hair. The Racking Horse is considered a "light" horse in comparision with other breeds, averaging 15.2 hands high (a "hand" is considered to be four inches) and weighing 1,000 pounds. Colors may be black, bay, sorrel, chestnut, brown, gray, yellow and sometimes even spotted.
Act no. 1153 designated the Racking Horse as the State Horse.
Racking Horse Breeders' Association of America
Route 2, Box 72-A
Decatur, AL 35603
Acts of Alabama, October 10, 1975
The Racking Horse Breeders' Association Brochure, nd.
Updated: February 6, 2014