From Endurance to Dressage
Well, we survived, and that's about it. Last week we broke more heat records than I can count. The temperatures we saw on Tuesday might be typical in Baghdad or, say ... HELL, but it nearly shut down the Central Valley. It was 115℉ one of the days, and the rest of the week was only one or two degrees off of that.
It has now been about three weeks since I have been able to ride more than two days a week. On Friday afternoon, as I watched my truck's thermometer flirt with 104℉, I called Sean Cunningham, owner and trainer at STC Dressage, to ask if we shouldn't cancel Saturday's lesson. He agreed immediately. It just wasn't fair to challenge Izzy that much after spending so little time with him.
After last Saturday's lesson, the one where Izzy kind of lost his marbles, I realized that even though it was too hot to ride, Izzy still needed to connect with me in some way. So, over the week, we played games out on the lawn with the hose. Even though sweat was pouring down my back, I let Izzy play in the hose as long as he wanted. And when he was done, I turned him loose on the grass to graze or talk to his pals over the fence.
I know I did something right because even on that day that hit 115℉, Izzy was happy to leave his spot in the shade to come over and see what I wanted to do that day. Ice cold carrot chunks - a gift from "J", probably didn't hurt either. Thankfully, we won't have another week like that for decades.
I am ready to get back to riding, and I think Izzy is, too.
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%: