From Endurance to Dressage
I swear that it is not usually this dangerous here in sunny California. If you live here, you already know about the raging wildfires that swept through the Ventura area last week and throughout the weekend. If you don't live in California, it's been a bummer of a week.
Spurred by ferocious Santa Ana winds, wild fires roared throughout Ventura County. The area hit the hardest is characterized by low mountains and canyons. These are the kinds of conditions that make it frustratingly difficult for firefighters to reach.
Chemaine Hurtado, owner and trainer at Symphony Dressage Stables, lives and trains in Moorpark, a community just a few miles southeast of the largest fire, the Thomas Fire. She spent several days evacuating horses from Ojai and nearby towns. Her barn, CastleRock Farms, brought in some evacuees even though they're on watch as flames still threaten to head their direction.
Even with volunteers arriving from all over southern California to help, many, many horses perished over the weekend. Besides homes, numerous barns and facilities were leveled.
My Facebook Newsfeed was filled with friends and acquaintances asking for help in evacuating their animals and family members. It was heartbreaking to read about their fear and loss.
I am sure we'll hear more about the devastation in the next week, but for now, please send good thoughts to Ventura County; they need it.
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%: