From Endurance to Dressage
That's Izzy for those of you who are confused. It's such a commanding name that even I have trouble calling him that. When we someday make it to a big show, the name will suit him. For now, I'll just stick with Izzy.
Izzy is 11 today. When I bought him as a very green 6 year old, I was certain that our rise through the levels would be quick and easy. It hasn't been quick, nor has it been easy. In fact, he doesn't even have a show career. I am not counting the handful of schooling shows that we did at Introductory Level.
The real, honest-to-goodness truth is that I am okay with where we are. In fact, things have started to really fall into place. On the ground, he is cuddly and sweet and a perfect gentleman. Under saddle he is still dealing with tension, but it gets better each and every day.
I was talking about this with a friend the other day. When people look at me, they assume that showing and earning ribbons is my end goal. They're not wrong to think that. It is what I do, particularly with Speedy. I am competitive, mainly with myself, and I like to do well. Showing is the yardstick by which I measure my progress.
While I love to show, it's not really what keeps me coming back. Instead, it's the process that I enjoy. I love the figuring it out part, the how do I get him thinking that part, and the I made that happen part. So while we're not showing (yet), I still look forward to our work. I don't have any concrete goals for him like I do with Speedy. Instead, I show up every day wondering what we'll figure out, what I will learn, and what I can teach him.
As I celebrate his birthday today, I am also celebrating our journey. It's not the same path that others might have taken, but it's the one I am thrilled to be on. Izzy challenges me as a rider, and nothing makes me dig deeper than a challenge.
Happy birthday, Big Brown Horse!
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%: