From Endurance to Dressage
I don't think Speedy and I are ever going to make it to a show this season. Between California's freakishly weird weather and Speedy's attempts to maim himself, we're still stuck at home. For the first time in its history, which is looooong, the Tehachapi Chapter of CDS has had to cancel a show.
I am super disappointed, but that's horses. If something can go awry, it will. There's no sense in boohooing about it. Instead, I've already printed the show premium for our next show which is a USDF/USEF/CDS affair.
My friend Jen is the show manager/secretary for all of the El Sueno shows, which are my favorite. The rings are lovely, stabling is swanky if you pay for the upgrade, and she lets me camp on the cross country course for free.
El Sueno also has a fun Loyalty Card program where after you pay for ten classes, you get a class free. I have eight stamps right now, so this show, a two-day event, will fill my card and get me started on another.
Given how expensive USDF/USEF shows are, El Sueno's got a good plan in attracting riders by giving them something back for their repeat business.
When Speedy and I made the move to Second Level last show season, I was annoyed to find that our hard work was going to cost me an extra 40 bucks since I ride two tests over two days. I had never paid attention to the costs of the higher level classes. I never thought we'd actually get that far.
Besides the two El Sueno shows, the only other USDF/USEF-rated show I did in 2018 was the Regional Adult Amateur Competition, and it already has added costs since it's run like an AA Championship (even though it isn't. They give lots of swag so the extra cost is worth it). Now that we're showing Third Level, the sticker shock has worn off, but I am curious to know if other shows charge more for the mid- and FEI Level tests.
Since I'm not showing on Sunday, I've messaged my endurance friend Marci to see if she wants to hit the trail again on Saturday. If I can't show, I might as well give Izzy some more out and about experience.
To those of you showing this weekend, good luck!
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 Second Level. 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%
2021 Show Season
(r) Ride-a-Test Clinic
(Q) Must Qualify
2021 Pending …
2021 Completed …
10/24-25 SCEC (***)
11/7-11/8 SB (***)
2021 Qualifying Scores
Regional Adult Amateur Competition (RAAC)
2nd Level Qualifying
3 Scores/2 Judges/60%:
Score 1: 60.610% Bhathal
2nd Level Qualifying
5 Scores/4 Judges/61%:
Stuff I Read