Wednesday, 01 December 2010
Jeremy and I finally got to use our new truck with the new trailer! Hurray!! We took two trucks and trailers actually. On Thanksgiving we loaded up 6 horses and drove the 1:30 drive to the ride. We arrived early afternoon. It was simple to set up the camp. We had one portable corral and 4 High Ties.
We had with us: Kingley, Tiran, Stirgess, Fuego, Roof and Smitty. Smitty was only here to train, no racing.
After we had set up camp Jeremy pre rode Fuego and Tiran and then took off with Smitty in the trailer for the beach for a long ride. Tim and I vetted in all three horses for day one. The day one team was Kingley with myself riding him, Tiran with Jeremy and Stirgess with Tim. After vetting we got our food ready for the potluck.
The potluck was great, there were all of the usual side dishes plus a plate of amazing venison that Dom Freeman had prepared. It was awesome, with chestnuts and all. I made Jeremy a plate as he was still at the beach.
On Friday morning we got up bright and early as the start time was 6:30 for all 3 days. The temp was 28, for us out here in CA that is practically sub-Arctic status!
Tim and I rode together while Jeremy went ahead. We later learned that Tiran was a little off and would not be finishing the course that day.
Before lunch Tim and I were riding when all of the sudden we came upon Judy Reens who had come off of her horse. Cassandra DiMaggio, Tim and myself stayed with Judy until the emergency vehicles arrived. It was later announced that she had broken her femur and had head trauma and was in critical condition. At this moment in time she has had surgery on her leg and is no longer in critical condition.
After lunch we had an uneventful ride in. Cassandra rode with us the rest of the day. We had good conversation the whole ride.
Kingley is making great head way. He is getting so much better with people on the ground and his fear is getting less and less. He gave me a little trouble on day one with the electrolytes but by day two he was willing to let me do it without much of a fuss. He also feels good around the vets now and always gets a comment or two on how low his heart rates are. Kingley and Stirgess finished day one.
That night we went to dinner with Roxi, Cody and Megan Robinson. It was fun having good company.
On Saturday we saddled up and it was calling for rain. We all dressed accordingly. Jeremy was now riding Fuego on the two day FEI 2*. I was still on Kingley and was doing his FEI 1* and Tim was still on Stirgess.
Early in the ride a rider made a snide comment "Wow, you're really prepared for the rain". That rider was not wearing rain gear. Guess who was smiling when the sky opened up? I wish I could have seen that rider then.
All three horses finished. It was crummy weather but we were dressed for it so it didn't matter. The trail did get a bit slick though and that slowed us down.
Kingley now has his 1* and can do an FEI 75 next. Woohoo!
Our friend Megan Robinson had ridden her horse, Kongo on Saturday as well. She was going home after the ride so she took Tiran back for us.
I decided that Kingley had done enough so I was not going to ride on Sunday but Tim wanted to bow out as he has not been training and his body was feeling it.
Sunday morning Tim loaded up the corrals, Smitty and Kingley in the second trailer and headed home.
Jeremy saddled up Fuego, I rode Stirgess and our friend Melody Blittersdorf was visiting from VT and she rode Roof.
The three of us were really taking it easy! It was funny to have three riders that were in the top ten in the USA for WEG hopefuls, riding in the very back of the race. In fact a friend of ours, Dave Rabe kept reminding me each day when I finished "another 50 that took you longer than the WEG 100!" It is so funny, but true, to look at it like that.
At lunch Stirgess was at 40 for his heart rate. I thought that was low until I heard that Roof was 32! These 5 year olds are pretty cool.
Stirgess was a bit off so we stopped there. Roof and Fuego went on.
Jeff, Melody's husband, was a great help. He had camp pretty much clean by the time I had pulled and continued to keep it clean after the horses went through lunch.
Jeff and the rest of Melody's family and I waited for Jeremy and Mel to finish. The ride was harder than the ride manager wanted it to be. There had been some trail sabotage and when the ride help went to fix it it wasn't correct and had the ride going in reverse so all of the long hills we were now going up instead of down. Oh well.
Both horses finished and looked good. Fuego now has his 2* and can do an FEI 100! After the ride we let the horses rest and then headed home. It was a long weekend with that many horses! Did I mention that Jeremy rode Smitty each day after riding in the race? He was using it as conditioning as the footing is sandy and nice down at the ride.
In all we had 9 starts for our horses and 7 finishes, not bad but not perfect. At least we got the two FEI completions. (Kingley even won his FEI ride.) That was most important to us this weekend.
It will be a while until the next race. We are going to spend New Years in Austin TX visiting Holly, my sister. Happy Holidays!