From Endurance to Dressage
A Guy's Guy
Isn't that a guy that every guy likes or finds handy? Is there such a thing as a Guy's Girl? If so, I am her, but I wish I weren't. I like being a girl. I love girl power, but the truth is that I don't like being a girl who's a "handy man." If you're a horse girl though, you need to have a working knowledge of how to use bailing twine, duct tape, wire cutters, and a tire gauge. Being proficient with a drill, hammer, and a screwdriver are also good.
At the show I did last month, I lost power in my trailer. That's not such a big deal with long daylight hours, but I sure do enjoy a shower each day. Even though I knew my batteries were fully charged, I checked the battery box to see what was wrong. I've had loose connections before, so I hoped that was all it was. Nope. As I jiggled the cables, sparks flew. Upon closer inspection, I could see broken wires leading to the battery terminal. I turned the batteries off and borrowed an extension cord from Sean Cunningham, owner and trainer at STC Dressage. He had graciously let me stable (and camp) at his barn.
With a show this coming weekend, I finally forced myself to stop by an auto parts store to buy new cables. It doesn't take much know-how to buy the right cable - any salesperson can direct you to the right aisle, but that wasn't what was so hard. I run two parallel batteries in my trailer. Connecting them doesn't take a high school diploma; once you see what goes where, it's pretty simple. The hard part was disconnecting the ground wire. That screw was TINY, and the bolt end was super thin, making it almost impossible to grab with the wrench.
My toolbox (which lives in my trailer) has pretty much everything I need ... except a socket set. With a socket wrench, the job would have been much quicker. Instead, I spent about twenty minutes tightening the bolt a fifth of a turn over and over. More than once the wrench lost its grip, and I would have to resize it to fit the bolt, but eventually, I got the job done.
Even though it looks like it should work, I think I actually need a screw with a wider bolt end to really hold the ground cable secure. Just to be on the safe side, I am bringing along my own extension cord. I am even considering ditching the batteries all together for this trip. If I can get power from an outlet, why bother with the batteries?
As long as I can shower, I don't care where the electricity comes from.
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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%: