A big old CONGRATULATIONS to Amy Miller and Sebastian on their USDF Bronze Medal! Suffice it to say that Amy took a risk on this horse, worked like crazy and it has paid off. Sebastian and Amy were one of my first real training projects, so it's a very special experience for me to see this partnership through to successful Third Level after starting at Intro Level five years ago! It's been an amazing journey!
This was a big show for everyone! Amy Miller and Teresa Kolar made their Third Level debuts. There were nerves, but we ended the show with a champagne toast to Teresa's BRONZE Medal! It's really an especially incredible achievement for Teresa - she has worked so hard to not only train Ava up the levels (the "easy" part), but even more so has been completely dedicated to helping Ava keep her wits about her at shows. It has not always been easy, but Teresa has never given up on her sweet mare despite the many challenges. To go in and get her Bronze Medal scores on the first trip out is just amazing. Congratulations T! Amy just missed her scores with a 58% and 59.3% - so very, very close! It's early in the year and she's got her game face on for the next show out. My partner Brio Tanzen, owned by Dale Lewis and Holly Sampson of Himmel Tanzen Farm had a great show out at Second Level, with a 70% and 73% on Saturday and 68% on Sunday. He was Open Reserve High Point on Saturday and is all qualified for Regionals at Second Level. He is such a blast to show - so honest and reliable - he really tries hard to make it better each time out. Thanks as always to NWDA for a spectacular show, and to the village. We really do know how to cheer each other on and mean it! It was a special added treat to watch a rare Century Ride. Not a dry eye in the house!
My photo and quote was recently featured in The Dressage Foundation Annual Report. Many thanks to TDF for helping make this program possible for me, and for helping Utah Dressage Society to host!
So proud of Annah Riggs and Alexandra LaFleur for the super job they did last weekend bringing their young horses out to the North Woods Dressage Association Schooling Show and for all the solid work they've been doing to bring them along! Way to go ladies! Super scores, happy horses and lots of pretty ribbons. These horses are good 'mudders'! Even through the pouring rain and torrential storms, they performed beautifully. Thanks NWDA for another great show!
Rhumba and I had a blast doing our Grand Prix Freestyle for the first time (and my first freestyle, ever, eek!) We had a 65% both days and are now all qualified for Regionals! We had so much fun. Thanks to the horse that makes me believe we can do anything and then tries his darndest to make it true. Sarah and Sebastian had a successful Training Level debut, staying between 60-64%, even winning a class and very, very narrowly missing a Regional qualifying score. Add to that a rocking competitor's party and impromptu Prince dance party, and me being so sick that I ended up with a serious case of laryngitis, this is one for the memory books for sure. Thanks to the best village around for making these shows so amazing in so many ways and of course to Otter Creek Farm for putting on these fabulous shows where all the magic happens.
We had a great clinic here with Ulf Wadeborn. Rhumba and I had super lessons, working on some tempo and alignment fixes and getting some feedback on our Grand Prix Musical Freestyle that I've been working on. Planning to ride it for the first time in May, so I need to get it dialed in soon! I also rode Sebastian through a demo of Third Level, Test 1 for a Judging Seminar and Scribing School that Ulf led. It was a great experience for him and we scored a 63%. Not bad for a first run through! Amy is hoping to show him Third Level this year so it was a good test run.
Thanks again to The Dressage Foundation for support to attend the USDF Instructor/Trainer Certification Workshops. You can read my report on my experience by clicking here.
I had such a great time soaking up sun and playing dressage tourist in Wellington, FL! I met up with good friend Brigid to spectate a couple of days of competition at the Adequan Global Dressage Festival, including the CDI5* Freestyle night. It was pretty fantastic to also witness the Olympian Salute, a short ceremony to honor all the (40 something) former Olympians who were on the grounds that day from different countries. Special thanks to Jen Baumert who let me crash at her place while I was there!