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>There's a high chance Roll With Joe would never had won harness racing's prestigious $1 million Meadowlands Pace last year had it not been for Sarah Mackie's intervention. Dr Sarah Mackie in fact.

Dr Mackie is the vet for Winbak’s Maryland and Delaware Farms. It’s a huge job and up until a year ago when another vet was appointed she oversaw 1,000 horses on both properties.

And with every horse there’s an injury or illness related story – Roll With Joe was no different.

“He had a fairly severe tendon problem when he was a yearling and I tended to him. He got through it okay didn’t he,” Dr Mackie said.

Dr Mackie specialises in horses. There was an equine emphasise in her eight-year vet studies. She spent the first four years studying for an Under Graduate at Virginia Tech (Class of 2000) and then spent four years becoming a vet at the Virginia- Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine.

Dr Mackie became the Winbak Farms vet when she was 26. She’s now 34.

It was a job promised to her.

“I worked at Winbak Farm when I was a teenager. I’ve loved horses since I was six years old. I’ve always been drawn to them. So you can see I’ve been with Winbak farm a very long time – and I’m still loving it,” Dr Mackie said.

“When I was studying they asked me to come back as their vet, so I did,” she added.

She said her love affair with standardbreds went back to when she was a stable hand for her second cousin Eli Scott, who trained out of Warwick in Maryland.

Dr Mackie is an Elkton (Maryland) native who said she loved her job and loved racing and standardbreds.

“The job is very interesting and very challenging and there are so many animals to deal with. Getting a second vet last year was a God-send.,” said Dr Mackie who works six days a week from 7am to 4pm.

Asked if there was any one aspect of her occupation she enjoyed more than the other, Dr Mackie replied:

“Reproduction. Any aspect of breeding whether it be ultra sounding to birthing. I love carrying out embryo transfers. It’s amazing to see masses of cells which could one day develop into a champion horse.”

Dr Mackie maintains the overall well-being of the Winbak farm animals with numerous tasks ranging from vaccinations to surgery.

Outside of harness racing Dr Mackie, who is single, enjoys gardening, travelling, and cooking.

“I have a vegetable garden and I enjoy turning food into nice meals. Risotto would be one of my best dishes,” she said.

She also enjoys U2, Bob Marley, Bay Grass and New Zealand’s very own Flight Of The Conchords.