From Endurance to Dressage
I wish this was a real show update, but it's late, I'm tired, and I need to go to bed. When I publish this, probably on Monday, it will be early (like 5:00 a.m.), so I won't be able to add much. Suffice it to say that schooling shows are so much more fun than rated shows.
Don't get me wrong, I had a fantastic time at both the California Dressage Society's Regional Adult Amateur Competition (RAAC) and the Championship show, but making our First Level debut with lots of supportive friends in a schooling show environment with zero pressure was FUN!
I have not laughed so much in a long time. Two friends showed up to watch and support our efforts (admittedly one was there to also trailer and serve as groom to another competitor, but still …). Being able to laugh at Speedy's wild and wooly antics with friends made the whole thing a very positive experience. Both the RAAC and the Championship Show were so serious that goofing off and laughing uproariously were not necessarily appropriate. At a schooling show, it was fine.
We crashed and burned … okay, not completely, but I definitely know what we need to work on. And even though there were mistakes, we had some really good moments as well. And not that it means anything to anyone else, but I thrive on positive feedback. The judge, a well-respected "L" Graduate, was super kind and generous in her comments, which encourages me for the next show. Isn't that the point of a schooling show?
Not only was the judge kind, but Chemaine, my away-from-home trainer, had some really good comments for me as well. I don't want fake compliments, but I definitely need to hear what has improved and what we're doing right. Chemaine noted that our trot work was spot on and that we have finally achieved some inside bend. And given that I rode with her just four or five weeks ago, it was especially gratifying to hear that progress has been made in such a short time.
First Level was fun, fun, fun, Speedy found it quite challenging, which is probably a good thing as his little smarty Arabian brain loves new and different. I think he's going to have a lot to chew on over this winter.
I promise to do a write-up of my lesson with Chemaine as well as share my score sheets with the judge's comments. For now, I need to get back to the real world, but I am holding tight to that little glow that moving up a level has left behind.
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
*** SCEC 10/15-16/22
2022 Completed …
(*) Tehachapi 5/22/22
(*) Tehachapi 7/24/22
(***) Tehachapi 8/28/22
2023 Qualifying Scores
Regional Adult Amateur Competition (RAAC)
Qualifying Training Level
3 Scores/2 Judges/60%:
Score 1: 62.115%