Welcome to

Team Equistaff

Based in the heart of horse country, Ocala, we’re a racing stable committed to top-tier training, Thoroughbred welfare and supporting our local equine industry.

All horses in our stable are fully or partially owned by EQUIstaff Inc., the original online recruitment agency for equine professionals. We represent equine professionals chasing the dream of a career with horses, and employers looking for the perfect fit to grow their team.

We’ve built a racing stable with some of the best-known Thoroughbred bloodlines, and finest trainers in the industry, with collective experience of over a century, and more than 6000 wins spanning their expansive careers.

Come and meet the horses and trainers behind Team EQUIstaff; we’re making massive strides in the racing world and beyond.


Racing For the Next Generation

Team EQUIstaff is the realization of the lifelong dream of, Founder and CEO of EQUIstaff, Inc., to make real impact in the equine industry.

Her vision to bridge the gap between equine employers and job seekers, in an accessible and affordable way was groundbreaking, earning massive success throughout the equine community worldwide.

Team EQUIstaff represents the chance to take the success of EQUIstaff back to where it all started – the barn.

Passionate about the Thoroughbred horse, Team EQUIstaff actively supports local horse industry through our memberships with Thoroughbred Owners and Breeders Association, Florida Thoroughbred Breeders’ and Owners’ Association, Ocala Metro Chamber & Economic Partnership, and the Ocala Horse Alliance, working to preserve and improve the horse industry locally. We are also proud sponsors of the Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance and Tampa Bay Downs racetrack – Tampa Cup Day.

We race under the name Team EQUIstaff to represent all equine industry professionals.

We chased our dream, now you chase yours.

Since 1982, EQUIstaff has been supporting the dreams of thousands of passionate equestrians looking to make their mark in the horse industry. The original equine staffing agency, EQUIstaff connects job seekers and employers through our global industry database.

EQUIstaff caters to all aspects of professional recruitment, from bespoke done-for-you consulting and social media services, to brand awareness support and more.

Free for job seekers and offering competitive rates for employers, EQUIstaff is an affordable and practical solution for equine professionals, servicing all areas of the equine industry. With a massive database of professionals seeking employment, and thousands of employers looking for their next hire, your new opportunity awaits with EQUIstaff.

The Latest

News & Events

Dreaming of Snow Race

Dreaming of Snow will be racing at Tampa Bay Downs on 12/3 for the 45th Running of the Sandpiper Stakes. Remember, you can always watch races live at: www.tampabaydowns.com

read more

The Team



Nike is our newest addition, currently training at Hennessey Hill Farm.

Sassy is sired by the great Accelerate – a five-time Grade 1-winning Champion Older Horse. Accelerate is best known for winning the 2018 Breeders’ Cup Classic, and for being one of only three horses to win the Santa Anita H. (G1), Gold Cup at Santa Anita (G1), and the Pacific Classic (G1) in the same season.

He ended his career with 10 wins, 5 seconds and 6 thirds from 23 career starts, with over $6million in earnings.

We are proud to have Accelerate bloodlines in our barn.


Dubbed ‘the best horse in America’ by renowned trainer Bob Baffert, Team Equistaff proudly secured shares in the stunning ‘Authentic’ after his Kentucky Derby 2020 win.

With bloodlines to die for (out of Flawless and sired by Into Mischief, a highly successful racehorse and breeding stallion) Authentic had an impressive racing career, with highlights including the Breeders Cup Classic, Kentucky Derby and Haskell Invitational S. He retired in 2020, completing his first breeding season at Spendthrift Farm in 2021.

We can’t wait to see what the future holds for this superstar and his offspring!

Mad about Carol

Bred out of Team EQUIstaff’s own successfully raced mare, Mineshaft Madness, and sired by Bridlewood Farm’s Valiant Minister, Little Carol holds a special place in the hearts of our team.

She carries the name of Mary K. Thomas’ late mother, Carol Thomas, who was a feisty and accomplished woman. We’re sure this little filly will do the name proud, and already demonstrates the characteristics of her namesake.


Crafty is a gorgeous chestnut 2 year old with racing royalty in his blood. His sire, ‘American Pharoah’, named Horse of the Year 2015, has been described as ‘An icon; the personification of perfection – physically, mechanically, and mentally. In short, the ultimate racing machine.’

We have every confidence this regal colt will show the same exceptional type, temperament and talent as his sire. He’s now in training and expected to hit the track Summer 2023!


We have big dreams for this little sweetheart. Purchased at the OBS March 2022 sale, Dreaming of Snow is out of Snow Fashion and sired by Jess’s Dream. Jess’s Dream is the sire of 3 crops of racing age, 173 foals, 77 starters, 34 winners of 57 races earning $2,115,285, including black-type-placed Restofthestory. We’ll sleep tight knowing we’ve added a filly with this pedigree to our barn! Keep your eye on this young prospect as she won first time out!


‘Lyssa’ is a true celestial being with looks to kill and charm to match. Her sire, Fury Kapcori is a racing idol – sired by Horse of the Year ‘Tiznow’ and from the Female Family of Horse of the Year ‘Favorite Trick’, he was a model of consistency. After winning 5 of her 8 starts, Lyssa has now retired from racing and has started her new career as broodmare, where her beauty, grace, talent and temperament will be immortalized through her foals.


Bred by Team EQUIstaff and born in Ocala, this colt graced the world with his presence in early 2022. Out of The Goddess Lyssa and sired by The Factor, Aegon Targaryen is destined for greatness. Our hopes for this strong and independent colt is that he leads with greatness, and takes over the racing world!


Mineshaft Madness, known in the barn as Lucky, is clearly a lucky charm, winning wire to wire on her first time out for Team EQUIstaff! Her sire, Mineshaft, is a multi-millionaire racehorse and successful stallion who now stands at Lanes End in Kentucky. Her dam, My Lucky Shoes, is the winner of over $100,000 and was in the money 12 times out of 17 starts. Lucky is an allowance winner of $83,000. At age 6 she retired to start her career as broodmare and has blessed Team EQUIstaff with our very special filly, Baby Carol.


Life’s just peachy with this mare in our barn! Peachy is out of W W Old School, by Royal Academy, and sired by Keen Ice, a G1 winner with earnings over $3.4 million. Peachy boasts an impressive start to her racing career, taking an unprecedented win her first time out! She just won two in a row after her lay off Currently training under Gerald Bennett at Tampa Bay Downs, Peachy is destined for sweet success!


Tappy, as she’s affectionately known, is out of It’s Heidi’s Dance and sired by Tapiture. Tapiture’s impressive bloodlines made him a sought-after stallion who was named the #1 second-crop sire of 2018. It’s Heidi’s Dance is the dam of 7 foals to win, including stakes winner Fast and Accurate. Tappy practically dances her way to victory, placing third in her first start and first in her second! She’s currently, but you’ll see her strutting her stuff again soon!

The Team

Owner & Trainers

Team EQUIstaff takes great pride in working with some of the most exclusive trainers in North America. All our trainers demonstrate unbridled talent, boasting impressive racing careers, but equally as important, they share our dedication to preserving and promoting the racing industry and thoroughbred welfare.

Mary K. Thomas, Owner

Falling in love with horses at the age of 6, Mary K. Thomas made her mark on the equestrian industry at an early age. Founding EQUIstaff, the original online equine staffing agency, in 1982, Mary has created a thriving equine career, and now has the pleasure of passing this experience on to the next generation of equestrians.

A lifelong lover of thoroughbreds, bringing Team EQUIstaff into existence is a dream come true for Mary. Aside from managing a barn of actively racing horses and EQUIStaff, Mary is happiest when contributing to preserve horse racing and improve the lives of horses through the Marion Therapeutic Riding Assocation and Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance.
Learn more about Mary here!

Gerald Bennett, Trainer

One of only 13 North American trainers to reach the milestone of 4000 race victories, and the most successful Canadian-Born Thoroughbred Trainer of all time, it’s fair to say Gerald Bennett is a horse racing icon.

Gerald’s impressive racing career began as a trainer in 1974 and has led him to proudly front The Winning Stables, his highly regarded racing barn.

Bennett is known for his success in the industry, but perhaps more importantly, for his love for his horses and his uncanny knack for turning beaten horses around.

We are thrilled to have Gerald on our team.

Mark E. Casse, Trainer

Growing up in ‘horse country’ Ocala, Florida, Mark E. Casse knew he was destined for a career in racing after traveling to Kentucky with his father to watch Secretariat take out the ​​1973 Kentucky Derby; an experience that ‘gave him chills’. At only 17 years old, Casse took out his trainer’s license in Massachusetts, going on to win his first race as a trainer with Joe’s Coming at Keeneland in 1979.

Fast forward, and Casse is now a 13-time winner of the Sovereign Award for Outstanding Trainer (Canada) and was inducted into the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame in 2020. With a talent for uncovering the unique training needs of each horse, we are thrilled to have Casse on Team EQUIstaff!

Kathleen O’Connell, Trainer

Racing has been in Kathleen’s sights for as long as she can remember. Growing up in Detroit, she was drawn to the Detroit Race Course, and it wasn’t long before she was working as a hot walker and groom. In 1981, Kathleen began training on her own, and has never looked back, winning more than 2,000 races, including graded stakes with Blazing Sword, Ivanavinalot, Fly By Phil and 2011 Kentucky Derby entrant Watch Me Go. Kathleen is known for her patience and dedication, never shying away from the ground-level work involved in managing her team. As the second all-time female trainer in North America, it is an absolute honor to have Kathleen join Team EQUIstaff.

Stay In Contact

Mary Thomas, President and Founder,  has over 35 years of staffing and recruiting experience and is an entrepreneur and horsewoman herself. Please check out Mary’s full profile on www.maryk.com.