From Endurance to Dressage
Since "T," Speedy's new friend, is going to be busy for the next few weeks, I decided I had better hop on him at least once a week to keep him in shape. While I love that gray pony to pieces, he was more than a bit of a stinker!
Just for fun, I decided to give Pivo a try with Speedy. Since I was riding in the morning, I had to put Pivo on the opposite side of the arena so that it wasn't facing the sun. Every time I glanced over, it looked like it was tracking us just fine. Upon review however, either Pivo or my phone's camera did something rather annoying toward the end of our 29 minute ride.
Pivo did lose us a couple of times at the A end, but it quickly found us. Once we started the canter work though, the video looks as though Pivo was watching a tennis match. We stayed in the frame, but it appeared as though Pivo was looking left and right really quickly. Once we walked, Pivo calmed back down, tracking us smoothly until the next canter when it again got glitchy. I haven't used the Pivo enough times to know if this was a problem with my phone's camera or with the Pivo. It could also be that I missed a setting.
I kept the ride to just under thirty minutes. Now that Speedy's not in regular work, It's hard to judge how much of his resistance was due to being tired or possibly pain. He's 100% sound, but when he got heavy or resistant, I tried not to be too picky. And as much as I wanted to school certain movements, the canter half passes were a hot mess, I didn't think it was worth the fight if he was feeling a bit ouchy.
I did school most everything from Third Level though, including the shoulder in and half passes, both in trot and canter. We didn't touch on the medium gates though since he was heavy in my hand. I didn't want him barreling around on his forehand, but I also hesitated to ask him to sit too much either.
The one thing that Speedy did want to do were the flying changes. He got every single one of them right, even when we worked on the line of changes from Fourth Level - three changes across the diagonal. He was so sharp off my leg that I even gave a try at counting strides between each change rather than just aiming for the first quarter line, centerline, and second quarter line. Speedy practically danced through those changes.
I thought it would be harder to "retire" Speedy than it has been. If I didn't have Izzy, I might be feeling blue about it, but Izzy's a lot of fun to ride, and he's giving me plenty to work on. If all I get to do are play around with flying changes and teach a lesson on him here and there, I'm perfectly happy to let Speedy pick and choose what he wants to do.
He's given me more than enough in our 13 years together. If we spend the next 13 just playing around, I will be one very happy girl.
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%: