From Endurance to Dressage
It has been a hot minute since you all have laid eyes on the reason this blog even exists. Not much has been happening with Speedy which is both a good thing and a makes me sad kind of thing. It's good that he hasn't needed any vet care, but no one has ridden him since October. I have seen him galloping around while he plays with Izzy, so I know he feels good. He was lame about a month ago, but that seems to have resolved itself. I think he would enjoy a ride, but he doesn't to seem to need it.
We had beautiful weather on Sunday, low 50s with bright, blue skies. While I rode Izzy, I left Speedy out in the aisle way between the paddocks. It's the space where he's standing in the photo above. There's plenty of grass to graze, but he prefers hanging out along the fence line with the mares in the field to the left. While they adore him, they like to remind him that he had better behave. I hear occasional squeals, but we all know it's just talk. They all love Speedy.
The corners of Speedy's eyes were crusty and gross, so I gave his face a scrub with baby shampoo and carefully picked off the dried boogers. While he acts offended about it, I know he secretly enjoys it. Once I get the wet washcloth over his eyes, he leans into my hands, begging for me to rub just a bit harder. With his face cleaned up, I picked out his feet, and knocked the dirt off his coat. I conditioned his mane and tail and then brushed them smooth. Speedy's mane and tail are rarely tangled, but they look nicer combed out. I finished off by trimming his bridle path.
Since his face was wet after the eye wash, I had to wait a few days to trim his old man beard. He had hair that was close to four inches long. It always makes him look so rangy; I am not sure why I didn't trim it sooner.
He certainly looked a lot less abandoned after a simple haircut. As hets older, Speedy's hair is getting longer and longer each winter. He has a polar bear coat each winter, and it usually takes him into early summer to shed it. He does have PPID (Cushing's Disease) for which he is medicated, but so far, he hasn't developed the typical long and curly coat that you would expect from a Cushing's horse.
A month or so ago, I had started to feel his ribs beneath his heavy coat so I increased his daily beet pulp and rice bran. I was happy to feel a new layer of flesh over his ribcage this weekend as I groomed him. Since he hasn't been ridden in months, he has no muscle, but he still feels sturdy and healthy. If someone doesn't come ride him soon, I just might hack him around the neighborhood. I know he would love that.
Speedy lives turned out in a large sandy paddock so he has plenty of opportunity to move throughout the day. And while I don't groom him nearly as often as I used to, I give him a quick check every day just to make sure he's healthy and not in need of anything. I also turn him out in the yard at least once or twice a week so he gets a change of scenery.
I am not quite sure what to do with him lately. Sometimes, I think he would love a new girl who wants to play with him every day. But then I wonder if he would miss his quiet, peaceful days. I know he loves me (as well as a horse can), and I can't help but think that living with a new girl might be too stressful for him.
As long as he looks peaceful and satisfied, I'll keep doing what I am doing. It seems to be working.
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%: