From Endurance to Dressage
As much as I brag on how well behaved Speedy G is, he does have naughty moments, even naughty days. Wednesday was one of those, but it wasn't 100% his fault. You see, California has been experiencing some old weather patterns that haven't been seen in a while, namely a North Wind and all its spooky friends.
We haven't had much of a winter over the past four years, so I can see how Speedy might have forgotten what cold and wet look like. Wednesday dawned damp and dreary, but then an arctic blast from the north arrived, and it sent the dander up on both of my horses.
Apparently, a north wind is the answer to my riding just on the edge of out of control problem. I tried to start my ride with a suppling walk exercise, but Speedy bolted so many times within the first five minutes that I realized nothing was getting supple. Rather than fight with him, I ran my stirrups up and slipped off his bridle.
Speedy is a great free-lunger, so I simply stood in the middle as he galloped around me. After a few minutes of bucking and farting one direction, I pointed my whip to suggest a change of direction and sent him the other way. When it seemed as though he could concentrate at least a little bit, I called him over and put his bridle back on.
I spent the next thirty minutes riding a rocket ship, but boy was it fun. I didn't have to ask for forward, I simply had to focus on channeling it. Since he wanted to dive into my hands and force me to carry him, I was able to use his natural impulsion to lift his front end by half halting like crazy.
We did tons of ten-meter circles and half circles, leg yields, shoulder in, haunches in, transitions within the gait, and counter canter circles. We also schooled the walk to canter transition, which he's doing pretty well, and kept hammering away at the canter to walk transition. He doesn't get the point to that at all.
Chemaine was right, forward fixes so many things. While a slow-poke feels safer to ride, it's hard to get any decent work done. Riding a lunatic is not for the faint of heart, but if you can hang on, it's a lot of fun!
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%
2022 Show Season
(r) Ride-a-Test Clinic
(Q) Must Qualify
2022 Shows Schedule
(*) Tehachapi 5/22/22
2022 Completed …
2022 Qualifying Scores
Regional Adult Amateur Competition (RAAC)
2 Scores/1 Judges/60%: