From Endurance to Dressage
In all the hubbub of finding a new truck, I completely forgot about my newest dressage score. I mean, I know I earned it, but waiting for USDF to see that I've earned it feels like an eternity. On Monday, after I rode Speedy, it suddenly popped into my head that USDF had probably updated their scores. I barely made it in the door before I was checking my scores. I told you I'm a score stalker.
In case you can't read the pinkish box, it says, "Two scores at Third Level, must be awarded by two different judges. Rider has one qualifying score at this level." Rider has one qualifying score; that means I only need ONE MORE score for a USDF Bronze Medal.
If you've checked my scores, no offense taken if you have, and frankly, I'd be disappointed if you haven't. How can you weigh the veracity or relevance of anything I say if I don't have the credentials to support what I write? My mediocre scores should prove to you that I am indeed what I say I am - a struggling adult amateur on a horse not bred for dressage but who is doing it anyway.
I am kind of surprised by the sheer number of USDF scores Speedy and I have earned, 81 at last count. And those scores don't include schooling shows or CDS only shows. We're at well over a hundred if you toss those in. What we may lack in quality, we've made up for in volume.
I know a lot of people will look at my scores and tsk, tsk them. Yes, I would like my averages to be higher, but showing is how I get better. I don't have access to weekly lessons. Shoot, sometimes I am lucky to squeeze in a monthly lesson. Over the years, most of my feedback has come from judges. I ride a test, I read what the judge thought, and then I try to improve on what we did before. If you go back to review all of my scores, you'll generally see a progression from low to at least higher within each level.
Once Speedy and I earn that last score for the Bronze Medal, we're going to hang out at Third until I feel that he has developed more lightness in his collected work. And that half pass has to improve before we even think about moving on to Fourth Level. Frankly, I need to get better, too. This level is requiring a lot more balance on my part as well.
I know I tend toward self-deprecation, but it's said in all earnestness. Seriously. If you have a goal, go for it. What I lack in talent and natural ability, I make up for in grit and determination. Most of the time, it ain't pretty, but it gets the job done. Dig deep, friend, and it will happen.
At least that's the pep talk I keep giving myself.
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%: