From Endurance to Dressage
My best friend likens Izzy to a bull in a China shop. A truer characterization could not be made. He doesn't intend to cause trouble, but he's a little oblivious to his own size and frankly, he doesn't know where all of his parts begin and end.
I was actually quite pleased with how Izzy handled this most recent road trip. He wasn't bored, but his tension level was much lower which let him do some thinking. Kathy graciously toted my tack and essentials in my new cart while I led Izzy up to the ring and cross ties. For previous trips, there was a lot of snorting and carrying on, but this time, he was a Looky Lou, but he remained calm and carried on.
We warmed up in the short court with two other riders, the first time I've ridden him with anyone else in the ring. He was tense and hollow-backed. Despite his tension, I still rode in and around other horses who were spooking and cantering, and I was able to use the whole ring. So even though he was a bit of a mess, he showed me that he can handle a warm up ring.
At about the 30 second mark, Jackie's horse gives a big spook at A, and it takes Izzy a few seconds to see what is going on. Once he sees Dempsey being naughty, he starts thinking about getting the heck out of Dodge. Here's the video:
The spook didn't phase me at all, we had only been riding for a few minutes, and he was high as a kite. What I love was that after a quick pat, he got right back to work.
A little bit later, one of the horses in the barn gave a nice snort as we were trotting by, and Izzy did an awesome reining rollback.
On the video, you can hear me laughing. While his spooks are pretty hard, he's not trying to unseat me. I never felt like I was even close to coming off, and he always regroups and comes right back to me.
I am not sure what he was fussing at in these next photos, but in all likelihood it had something to do with softening (or not) to the outside rein.
There were some video fails as well. In the end though, he finally said yes.
Right in the very beginning of the video, you might have seen him stop short. That was the second time ... in a row. My best friend was bummed that she missed the first stop, so she quickly turned the ipad back on in hopes that he would do it again. She squealed in delight when he gave me the exact same body slam in the exact same spot.
Izzy is definitely not a beginner's horse, but none of these spooks or naughties are in any way scary. He never gives me a reason to think oh, crap. In fact, when he's being balky or kicking out, I feel perfectly safe giving him a good old fashioned pony club kick or whack with the whip.
Izzy is actually a lot of fun to ride. He's powerful, pleasant to look at, and a pretty decent dude. So even though he's a bit of a bull in a China shop right now, deep down I think he's really a Ferdinand at heart.
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%: