From Endurance to Dressage
Speedy G is once again fun to ride! When I quit taking it personally, his unbalanced steps and resistance to bend are just things to work on, nothing else.
I followed up Saturday's ride with an even better one on Sunday. It didn't hurt that the weather was absolutely beautiful: clear blue sky, slight breeze, temperature in the mid-60s, and all of that combined with perfect footing. You simply can't ask for more.
I saw this on Facebook over the weekend; it pretty much summed up the weekend. Not only that, but it speaks a bit to today: being thankful for what we have.
Speedy started out the ride being a bit of a giraffe as a young family had arrived to play around with Bailey, one of the other horses at the barn. Speedy is slightly ADD so it was hard to get him to focus, but I got tough with him and used his distractibility to work on hard exercises that he doesn't like (turns on the forehand and haunches). Those usually get his attention pretty quickly.
Once we were really working, I was all smiles. How did we get so much better in just a few weeks? He hasn't dropped drastically behind the vertical in several rides, and he's really trying to keep the contact. We did all kinds of exercises utilizing the entire arena. It was fun to play around with turns, loops, and serpentines.
I was particularly happy with his canter work. To the right, he gets very light in my hand, but it takes a lot of inside leg. He's stronger to the left, but I need strong outside aids to get him to turn. We worked on riding the canter in a square, which lightened him up even more to the right; man, it was fun! To the left, we did more and more canter loops until I had him put together enough to ride an entire serpentine. I was freaking out happy that he held the canter through the middle loop.
After that successful exercise, I brought him down to a walk and praised him enthusiastically. I hopped off and gave him a big scratch. He looked a little surprised by the hubbub, but I know he knew he had just done something right.
I am really looking forward to several days of riding in the daylight this Thanksgiving weekend. Enjoy your own friends and families on this day of thankfulness.
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%: