From Endurance to Dressage
I didn't know how much I had missed giving lessons until I gave one last week. All of Speedy's regular ladies have either moved on or are dealing with life. For a while there, he had more than a few lady friends. One rode for a month or so, and then she just stopped calling me, no offense taken.
Another, a junior, only made it out once and realized that dressage wasn't as much fun as group H/J lessons. "T" moved to another part of the state and has since bought her own young mustang, and I couldn't be happier for her!
The last of Speedy's ladies still sends texts to let me know she's thinking of us and desperately wants to come back. We want her to come back, too!
Besides the ladies who have come out to ride regularly, Speedy has made a lot of other friends. "K," who has done something spectacularly awesome for me - I can't WAIT to show you, has ridden Speedy and spent time out here at the ranch riding one of the ranch horses.
Speedy has also carried both old and new friends on trail rides, particularly E, the immigration attorney for whom I have done some writing. She had a great time riding him.
Out of the blue, another horse friend reached out to see if Speedy had room on his calendar for yet another friend. "L" is horseless at the moment and was feeling the need for some horsey time. Of course I told her to come out.
While L has owned her own horse, he was a senior citizen and not likely to throw in a buck and a bolt. She has also been in a lesson program doing some jumping. Even so, unless I've known someone and seen them ride myself, I am not likely to just toss someone up on Speedy and let her have her way. If someone is going to ride my unicorn, I like to explain his buttons.
Speedy is not at all complicated to ride, but if given a tour, I find that riders appreciate all of his bells and whistles. In L's case, she's been riding lesson horses who aren't as sensitive to their riders as is Speedy. L has also been riding in a jumper saddle, so helping her adjust her position for a dressage saddle seemed only polite.
I guess all of that is my round-about way of saying I gave L a lesson of sorts. When I had asked her what she was expecting from the day, she had said that she was open to whatever I was up for. In my book, that means game on! She spent most of the time just walking as she hasn't had a lot of saddle time this year, but Speedy is a confidence builder, so before she had finished, I talked her into a small trot.
When riding Speedy, you really only need to think trot or whoa, and he's happy to deliver. I've taught Speedy that a deep sigh is a cue to either come back to the trot from a canter, walk, or halt depending on what you were doing before hand. I think L appreciated how well educated Speedy is.
I LOVE teaching, and as much as I've always said that barn time is my break from teaching, I've discovered over the past year and a half that I actually really dig giving lessons. I am good at it, and I have the perfect lesson horse. L will be relocating to the coast in June, but until then, I hope she'll come around at least once a week.
It's fun for me, and I know Speedy LOVES to show off for his ladies.
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%: