Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Rolex Reflections

As I drove into the horse park I almost missed a feeling I haven't had yet.. the feeling of driving into the Rolex Kentucky Three Day with my horse to compete. I tried to figure out if I would have felt nervous or excited even proud driving in there with Tate. But I know the actual feeling I had was a bit sad, very frustrated but most of all hungry as hell to not come as a spectator next year but as a rider.
The track was actually a bit soft and certainly some big questions but it didnt have the "bogie" fences that when you walked it you thought this is gonna catch some people out. I thought it would be a true test for the first timers but the old dogs should jump around clear and do it confidently. There were def. a few troubles but over all the course rode well. Oli Townend had a horrific fall that really shouldn't have happened. He rotated over a tall hanging rail before two big drops. The frangible pins did not break. There were actually 4 occurrences where pins didn't break and they should have. This i am sure will be seriously looked into and corrected before the WEG's in the fall.
I also spoke to Katie Prudant( our High Performance Show Jumping instructor) about what she thought of the event. She was shocked at how many people had time. She said how can you expect to never run at speed in all your lead up events and then show up to the "big one" were all the pressure is and just say ok today im going to go fast enough. She said "medals are won and lost due to time penalties" .. This input I think is going to help our top riders a lot. I said before that Oded ( dressage trainer for HP list) and Katie came into our training sessions they were unimpressed and demanded more and better. Jumping around Rolex is not good enough, you have to do it fast and well if you want expect to win. Speaking of the win, WFP was fantastic as usual. Cool Mountain (Ol) looked all grown up since last time I saw him( when he was doing 2 stars).. Easy keeper as always The girls were hoping he would lose weight on the flight over bc he was almost a bit fat going to a 4 star.. he didnt lose 1 kilo on the trip :)!
Show jumping day was a tough one for some. I felt terrible for Kim who has worked to get every ounce of talent out of her grey horse and he just didnt perform. She looked great dressage and xc but lost it all when her boy stopped at the 4th and then bowled through the rest of the course dropping her from 2 to out of the top 20. Sad day when it is so obvious that the horse power is just not there to not only support our up and coming s but our top professionals as well. Great day for phillip and woodburn. All his hard work with that horse paid off with a clear round and I must say boyd looked on top form all weekend having great rides on all his horses. William had a rail in hand going in but didnt need it .. he had a hunter round.
So all in all an interesting weekend but Im not feeling any more comfortable about our Team for WEG's we just dont have a long enough list to choose from. Sometimes things fall apart before they get better so hopefully some of the new ideas being implemented into team training will pay off in a hurry.. but i just don't know if we will pull it off in time for WEG's. ...
Huge congrats to David O'C he really has pulled the Canadians together! 4 in the top 10.. He had a plan and stuck with it and it had taken over 4 years but he has really molded a top class group of horses and riders. He told me this spring he finally had a real group of riders that had there heads in the game, stuck with the program and had good jumping horses.. he was worried that none of them were real dressage horses but looks like he has done a bloody good job ! 4 in the top 10 and that is without Rebbecca and Karl who both have possible rides at the WEG's.. its all going to be very interesting :)
CIAO for NOW ! s

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

tater wil be back jumpin in no time !

a wee update

Well last weekend was entertaining with the new guy! i think he will be alright though. I did find myself revisiting my childhood in the dressage ring! "alvin" classic garden.. stuck his head up in the air half way through the test and i couldnt get it back down!! I was litterally laughing .. i was like seriously i even resorted to old fashion sea sawing ! Horses keepin us humble one dressage test at a time :) but i do think that can be fixed np he just got a little confused :) he did jump all the jumps so we are now gonna work on the actual training part of our new found relationship not just survival!

Tate Trotted!! who knew i would be so excited! He feels great and is trotting for 5 min along with a 45 min walk and a 20 min walk in the afternoon.. oh the little things ;)

Im headed to kentucky on thursday to watch. I was gonna stay at home and sulk but decided to grow up and kick on so if i cant be there riding im sure as hell gonna "watch and learn"! There are a list of us "should be here but shit happens and now we are pissed but we are gonna come and be pissed together" group. I am also excited to see WFP and granny potts ( williams head girl) shall be delightful


Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Home sweet home

Well after a week of being home I feel like I am almost settled in. The Farm looks great and as great as our Aiken facility was Hart Farm is truly one of the nicest places I have worked out of. The horses are very happy to have nice spring grass in there fields!..
Tater is going to the vet tomorrow for his last shockwave. He has been walking 30 min a day and is just a wild man, i dont know if he is actually missing the work or just all the attention :).. between chrissy and I we have been sure to spend some QTT ( quality tate time) everyday other than his daily walk! Fall plans have us looking toward England and Blenhiem CCI *** . I dont think making a push for Burghley or Poe is necessary. I just want Tate to come back strong and have a good first International Debut.
We have some fun youngsters in the barn! Sobe Dazzled ( I know i cringed at the name too but she was named by my mom and there was no changin it!) She is out of an Argentine mare I used to ride that was from strong jumper lines and Catherston Dazzler. She is turning 4 this month and is wicked cute unfortunately she is a midget!! She sticks around 15' but like most little girls my mom has Rolex hopes ;) inspired by the amazing Theodor O'Connor!
Echo is another 3 soon to be 4 year old that has joined the heard. He is a Windfall baby out of a jumper mare. He is all legs but still seems to be on the small size but great little mover and adorable personality.. so look forward to the baby parade summer 2010!
I am also looking forward to a new relationship with the young riders. I have been asked to be a selector for Area 4 for the NAYRC and teach at thier clinic in July. I love teaching YR's should be a blast.
On a final note I ended up selling my Geoffry horse to Will Coalman. Im excited to see this pair move through the levels. I decided this winter Geof was prob. more of a mans horse and put him tentatively on the market. Will and I struck up and old school horse trade! We now welcome Classic Garden to the S.H.E team! He will be competing this weekend at Fairhill. He is a Chestnut 7 y/o TB who is quite interesting so stay tuned :)