We have finally found Aero's true identity. Funny thing is, we had it all along, just didn't know it.
From the day we got her, we have been trying to ID her using her tattoo. We have read it, we have had others read it -- the results have always been the same - - - the first 5 characters crystal clear and the final one fuzzy, but everyone has always decided it's a "3". The problem - plug that into the Jockey Club tattoo database and it comes up as a horse that has the EXACT markings described for the horse, except one little problem -- it's a chestnut, Aero is most decidedly bay.
Well, we had just chalked it up to we were reading the tattoo wrong, but no other digit plugged into that tattoo would come up with anything that matched either, so we had basically just given up. Anyway, I had given up -- DD, apparently, did not. She kept at it and, just recently, found race replays for the horse that was listed with the tattoo we had read -- the horse in the videos looked bay, more to the point, it looked EXACTLY like our bay (her facial markings are very distinctive).
At this point, she was convincing me - so I emailed the breeder/trainer on record and the Jockey Club. I got a response from the Jockey Club that read:
The horse registered as Lady Brave Heart is a bay mare. Her Certificate of Foal Registration issued indicating chestnut in error. No request for a Corrected Certificate has ever been made.
-- then I got a response from the breeder/trainer and he confirmed that the horse I had sent pictures of WAS Lady Brave Heart (he knew her right away from the facial markings, they are what she was named for).
So - now we know our Aero is Lady Brave Heart -- she had eight starts, never finished better than 6th. Seems she was flipping her palete. She would start off brilliantly - generally leading, at the very least in the top three - but by the half her breathing was compromised and she'd fade fast. She had been sold to someone that was supposed to work with her - yet w/in two weeks was at the auction barn where she was taken from the kill pen by the person we got her from. He(trainer) had been looking for her and the other filly that was sold at the same time because apparently the sale had gone sour, but he had been unable to locate them. There had even been a court case on the sour 'sale' (payment fell through), but because the horses couldn't be located, it went nowhere. Ultimately, at this point, he was just thrilled to know she was in a good home - because he had resigned himself to the fact they had likely gone to auction and would up exactly where they had.
The best part - it all came full circle there years, to the day, from when it all started - kid you not. I got the confirmations of her identity on DD's birthday this year and it was three birthdays ago that she found out she was getting a horse.