From Endurance to Dressage
I am hoping (my fingers and toes are all crossed) that I will get to do my First Level debut at the Ventura County Chapter of the California Dressage Society's (VCC-CDS) schooling show in early November. I need to check on Chemaine's schedule and verify that the show is still a go, but if the stars align, we'll get to see where we're at for First Level.
First Level introduces only a few new movements, most of which I've been schooling during the summer. That doesn't mean I am schooling them correctly though. We need to be able to do ...
First Level Test 1 is relatively easy, and I say that with the utmost respect. As the test is written right now (new tests are due in 2015) each movement follows in a well thought out progression that seems to be setting the rider up for success. None of the new movements are back to back and they are spaced out with a walk or a working trot.
I like the E-X half circle left into the X-B half circle right. It's much easier to do on a small horse like Speedy G than on a larger warmblood. Getting my geometry right is the hard part for us since I don't have a real court. We are practicing it though.
The stretchy circle is now at C, right in front of the judge. Since working with Chemaine at the championship show I am feeling better about that movement, so it's not a big deal.
The next new movement is the 15-meter canter circle, but again, it's a little easier to do on a smaller horse, and it's really just the geometry that I need to focus on. Speedy can do the circle; I just have to watch where we're going.
Speedy likes to lengthen the canter. Getting him smoothly back into a working canter is something we need to continue to work on.
Our trot lengthening is non-existent, but I can feel it in there. Speedy LOVES to trot across the diagonal and naturally wants to zoom. I just need to show him how to zoom without moving his legs faster!
We have about three weeks until the schooling show. I am not anxious about moving to First Level; instead I am looking forward to trying something new.
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%: