Sunday, February 05 2017
I am so far behind, once again. I just saw that the last blog I wrote was back in Nov??? How did that happen??? I have ridden 450 miles since then (all in my super cute, custom, pink Trail Tribute Reactor Panel saddle) so I will just have to do a hustle up blog to get myself up to the present:)
We did the Broxton Bridge ride back in Nov. (2016) I rode Derby the first day and he and I did his first FEI 1*, which he came in second over all on with high vet score and BC. He was awesome. The second day I rode Benz on her first 1* and she came in 7th just going at an easy pace. She is truly an easy mare in so many ways!
Jeremy rode but had a bad weekend with two pulls. One on the 75 and one at the finish of the LD. Bummer.
The next ride we did was a new one to us at Blackwater Boogie. This ride was fun. Camp was nice and the ride was well organized. The trails were pretty much flat with a slight amount of roll to them with nice footing. Jeremy took Sinister around on day one on the 50 and came in second. I rode both days 50's. Day one I rode Deen on her first 50. She was great finishing 11th. Then I took Treasure on her first 50 and she finished 8th. Both mares were great and seemed to take to endurance with a smile on their face all day. We also saw Errow with his new owner Jaime, they won the LD.
Then we went to Autumn Gallop and that is what Derby wanted to do all day, GALLOP!! He was pretty well behaved and cooperated with me on not galloping. (It was really hot all day, lots of extra Redmond Salt for this one!) Then on the last loop I finally let him canter the whole way around and he and Benz (Jeremy riding her) caught up to the leaders and then with less than 4 miles left we decided it was time to pass. Jeremy was not sure that Benz would be able to keep cantering so he told me to go (Benz is an uber mellow horse so she is a bit hard to read at times). I cantered on and passed the three lead horses who were all riding together. I heard one of them come with me. I kept cantering along and then there was a hard left turn so I slowed to trot and looked over to see it was Jeremy. He laughed, knowing that I thought he was someone else. It was pretty funny. Benz and Derby cantered in and looked super. The two of them fought over the BC award with Derby winning out.
After this ride I might have the rides out of order as they are not yet listed on the AERC website. I think our next ride was the Goethe Benefit ride held at Helen's house. I rode Treasure with our friend Marta from Spain who rode Deen. Deen ended up getting pulled. Her hind end was little funky, perhaps she was not recovered from her first 50 yet. She was better shortly after so luckily it wasn't a big problem whatever it was. Treasure finished and looked strong. Jeremy rode Sinister and tied for 1st and then lost BC by 1 single point!! So close.
Then there was the Greenway Getaway two day. This is over at the Pruit trailhead. We trailered over each morning so that we could stay in our own bed with our herd at home. Day one Jeremy and I rode together on Tex and Sudden. It was a very fun and relaxing day. We trotted along with a lot of walking breaks. It was Sudden's first ride in a year and Tex's first 50 and first ride since he cut his hind leg horribly (like a $4500 cut, yes a REALLY bad cut). It was rewarding to see them both come through and look happy at the end. The second day Jeremy took Deen on her second 50. I rode Charich on the LD with our friend Misty who rode Grand Ku. Grand was very happy to be out on the trail. He had colic surgery in Aug 2016. He is one incredible horse. I really love that guy. All three horses finished looking really great. It was such a relief to see that Grand could safely do the LD.
Goethe Gallivant FEI 2 day was next. On the first day Jeremy rode Liger on the 75, and I rode Benz. Liger left in to the second loop and did not seem right so Jeremy went back. Benz went all the way. On my last 10 mile loop I started feeling something questionable... then I thought that she was ok...In the end we had a finish line pull on the 75/2*. Total bummer. Gus was the only positive result for us on day 1. He was ridden by a Canadian rider, Tracy Vollman. It was Gus' first 1*. They were either 2nd or 3rd and also won BC.
On day 2 I rode Derby on his first 2*/75 and Jeremy took Sinister on his first 1*. Derby felt great all day and finished his first 75 while also doing his first 2* and he came in second place. He is really getting the hang of this. He was the best behaved he has been and his heart rates were a lot lower than at previous rides. Sinister had been great all day and then less than 1 mile from the finish he stepped on a rock. Jeremy said he felt it happen. He was then pulled at the finish. Seriously?? This is the type of weekend that makes you second guess all of your life choices... Tracy took Treasure around on her first 1* and she finished. (I might have Gus and Treasure's days flip flopped, but as the results aren't posted, I am just doing this from memory).
On The Edge 2 day was next. We had a young rider from Argentina visiting us, Amparo Gonzalez. She was so fun to have around and so helpful as well as a really nice rider. Day 1 Jeremy rode Ambush, Amparo rode Charich, and I took Timing all of us on the LD. It was Timing and Ambush's first LD. Charich was a hair off after the first loop. Timing and Ambush finished. I had my foot stepped on before the ride and it hurt the entire day, never changing. It was the first time that I felt that I could not trot out my own horse in my entire career. Lucky for me Charlie Koester was around and she trotted Timing for me. Day 2 I was never planning on riding in the first place so I went to get my foot x-rayed. Bailey and Amparo, Jeremy and Tex were doing the 50. Barbara Hershberger came to help and watch her horse Bailey do the 50. I got back from the doctors office mid way through the 50. Hobbling around with an ortho shoe on. My foot was not broken (which was great news as I could now ask Scott Hie to adjust it the next time I would see him) my foot did however have a big hemotoma in it. The swelling is still there as I write this and it has been three weeks now... (Scott did adjust it and he told me that there was probably nerve damage from where the compression happened. It made an amazing amount of noise when he adjusted to too!) Amparo finished her first USA ride with Bailey. Jeremy and Tex withdrew as Tex was not right. That night we went to dinner with Barbara. It was fun to see her and have a visit.
After The LD at On The Edge Amparo showed us that she had been riding for the past week with a hole in her leg. She is one tough cookie, she never complained. Her pants were not riding pants, but stretch pants with a inner leg seem. We lent her some Toklat Irideon pants and she is now a believer. They worked very well for her and she has since ordered a few pairs:)
Finally coming into the present, we did the Broxton Bridge ride again. We took the new (new to us) 6 horse trailer and we filled it and even had to ask Sarah to haul one more for us!! Too funny. We have decided to do away with our fancy trailer as we are so over dropping money into it. Going back to simple. The fancy trailer's final straw was when BOTH slideouts failed. The trailer guy told us that our trailer had the top of the line slides and that THOSE never go bad... So much to the fact that the person who designed the trailer had not accounted for them ever going bad and now we have to literally rip out walls and cabinets to access the slides for repairs. SOOO MUCH FUNNN!!! As soon as it's fixed it's for sale.
So we are currently very much "camping" in the new 6 horse trailer. The good news is that the front dressing room is big enough that we can add a shower, fridge and microwave. That will be plenty good enough for us. It already has an AC unit, heat will also be added. It will be our home made (read, we will know how to fix EVERYTHING) LQ. We are loving this trailer so far, oh and the best part is that the nose of the trailer fits a King size mattress!!
At Broxton we had 7 horses. Our friends Nicki and Andy Thorne met us at the ride. The plan was for Nicki to ride both days of 1*'s, Jeremy and I to ride both days of 2*'s and Amparo to ride one day on the 1*.
Day 1 I took Derby out for a 2*. Jeremy rode Gus on a 2*. We rode together and had a great first loop. At the vet check the vets were asking Gus to trot out a few times. I was confused as I could not see anything. They asked him to go back for a recheck. Before the recheck we trotted him out for ourselves and he looked fine. He went to re-present. He looked good. The vets were having him trot again... He looked fine... then as he slowed down to approach the vet on the return you could see the last couple of steps looked funky. Ok, so there was something super subtle there. In my opinion it was not consistent. It could only be seen at the lowest speed, while stopping at the end of the trot out. Oh well. He was pulled. (Not saying we wanted to ride a horse that was lame, however this was so questionable...)
Derby continued around and each loop I let him go a little faster. At every vet check he was FREEZING. He would shiver and shake our entire hold even with a stack of blankets on him. It would take the first mile on trail before he would unclamp his tail and finally warm back up. Poor Florida boy. He won the 2* and looked super awesome. I was really excited to show him for BC as he looked so good and he is great at showing for BC. When I went to warm him up for BC it was clear that being cold all day had caught up to him, he had a hind end cramp and I would not be showing him after all. :( darn.
Nicki rode Lou on her first 1* and Lou did super. I think she was second or third on the FEI ride and top ten AERC.
Day 2 Jeremy decided it would be better for all if he gave his 2* horse to a young rider who was supposed to do her first 1* but ended up horseless. Jeremy made the arrangements and made it possible for Charlie Koester to do the 1* on Treasure. He crewed instead. I rode Sudden on the 2* and Nicki rode Deen on her first 1* with Amparo taking Grand on his first 1*.
Sudden was great to ride, other than his typical rodeo when you first get on him. He felt good and we went pretty easy. He is such a joy. I came in to the last vet check and trotted him out. He passed and got all A's. Jeremy then told me that he thought he had seen something. Sudden is probably my favorite horse and he is coming back from an injury so we are super paranoid about him. In the end I decided to play it safe and rider option. I would rather have my favorite horse withdrawn than possibly re-injured. It was a choice I was very happy with and releived as he looked perfect when we trotted him out cold the next morning. No regrets there. Love that horse.
Nicki "herded the kittens for us" she kept the two young riders flying straight all day. With a few small adventures (Deen jumped at one point so high in the air that Nicki's air vest deployed, Nicki was so high out of the saddle she had no stirrups and then with the vest's air canister explosion noise, Deen was off to the races) the three horses and riders finished looking perfect. Amparo and Grand (he looked great all day and I am so pleased that he is back to full health from his colic surgery that he had), Nicki and Deen (Deen was a terror most of the day, thank you Nicki) and Charlie with Treasure all were in the top ten 8th, 9th and 10th. Great ride for the three of them.
We drove home from the freezing weekend back to Florida. When we got home from the 6 hour drive Jeremy decided to shoe two horses front ends and then we did a few quick things before dark, like filling hay huts, unloading wet stuff from the trailer and laundry. Amparo packed for her next leg of her USA adventure. Then I took Amparo to Valerie Kanavy's house to drop her at her next destination, riding with Val for a couple of weeks. Jeremy stayed home to instruct Charlie on the house/herd watching as we were flying out the next morning to the Carribean.
I am typing this as I sit on the island of Bequia at Nicki and Andy's house. It is stunning. Life in the fast lane, only it hit a very nice slow here this week. See you all at Gator Run. Hopefully without any one getting pulled!!