From Endurance to Dressage
But first … I'll be at a clinic on Saturday and Saturday so you won't hear from me until Monday. Enjoy your weekend!
And the final day … Again, thanks to Tracy at Fly on Over for providing the questions. Here are My (final) 5 Things.
21. Favorite classes to watch: I really like to watch the level that I am working towards. Right now, that would be First and (someday) Second Level. By watching riders at these levels, I get to see how the movements should be ridden. I also watch the USDF video, On the Levels, for the same reason.
I also enjoy watching the highest level tests like the Grand Prix and Freestyles because that gives me a picture of what the ultimate dressage horse and rider team should look like.
And strangely enough, I adore watching show jumping at the Grand Prix level. In fact, it's what I watch every night when I go to bed. Those riders are simply amazing. Watching them helps me ride Sydney better when he's gone a bit coo coo for Coco Puffs. If they can manage a 1,200 pound dragon seven or eight feet in the air while galloping at 20 miles per hour, surely I can handle my own little monster while trotting 20-meters at C!
22. What’s in your cooler at horse-shows: Gatorade, water, lemonade, hard boiled eggs, sliced apples, string cheese, a sandwich, a bag of potato chips, and a coke for afternoon tests. Horse shows take a lot of energy, and sometimes I can't get what I need with my regular diet. I am not a soda drinker generally, but I've found that having a Coke before an afternoon test will help me get through the rest of the day, especially if I still have to drive 3 hours to get home.
23. One thing about showing (or riding in general) you wish you could change: I love how dressage shows are run. Everyone knows exactly what time their ride is so the sport suits my need for order and being on a schedule. With that said, the one part of showing that I don't like is coats. It is so warm here in Central/Southern California that I rarely wear a coat to ride in. On our coldest winter days, I usually wear a long sleeve running top with a fleece vest. Putting on a show coat, even a well-fitted one, makes me feel constricted and stiff. I would prefer to show in a fancy vest.
24. Your ringside crew: I am a one woman show. For my first few shows, a very good friend did come along to help me out, but who wants to continue doing 4:00 a.m. wake up calls? My mom came with me once which was really nice. But yeah. I travel alone. The upside is that I always meet really great people, and I've never not been able to find help when I needed it. Showing alone also lets me focus on just me and my horse without any other distractions.
25. Best prizes: one of the rules about endurance riding is that everyone who completes gets a prize. We got lots of cool stuff over the years: flash lights, laundry bags, travel mugs, buckets, belt buckles, t-shirts galore, sweatshirts, hay carriers, coffee mugs, and a variety of other things. Ride managers take pride in coming up with creative completion prizes.
Dressage shows are a bit different. Ribbons are obviously the norm, and at the beginning, I loved getting ribbons; especially the great big ones. Now, not so much. I can't say no to a ribbon, but I have also run out of ways to display them.
I've also won a fleece cooler, actually two if you count the one I won at an endurance race. I know there must be other prizes out there to win, but so far, the things I've won at dressage shows have been pretty standard.
About the Writer and Rider
I am a lifelong rider.
I began endurance riding in 1996 where I ultimately completed five, one-day 100 mile races, the 200-mile Death Valley Encounter, and numerous other 50, 65, and 75 mile races. I began showing dressage in 2010.
Welcome to my dressage journey.
About Speedy G
Speedy went from endurance horse to dressage horse. After helping me earn a USDF Bronze medal in the summer of 2020, he is now semi-retired. Speedy is a 2004, 15'1 hand, purebred Arabian gelding. His Arabian Horse Registry name is G Ima Starr FA.
Izzy was started as a four-year old and then spent the next 18 months in pasture growing up. I bought him as a six-year old, and together, we are showing at the lower levels. He is a 2008, 16'3 hand warmblood gelding. His Rheinland Pfalz-saar International (RPSI) name is Imperioso.
National Rider Awards
State Rider Awards
State Horse Awards
CDS Sapphire Rider Award
Third Level: 63.514%
Third Level: 62.105%
2023 Show Season
(r) Ride-a-Test Clinic
2023 Show Schedule
2023 Completed …
2023 Qualifying Scores
Regional Adult Amateur Competition (RAAC)
Qualifying Training Level
3 Scores/2 Judges/60%: