So I’m feeling rather lucky!!
I had an amazing opportunity and got a ride on the super star that is Stedinger!
Revelwood Stud had a competition going to “win” a ride on him. My dear “Big Chad” owning friend suggested I should enter. Which of course I did! Thinking with a degree of trepidation I am not exactly a textbook Dressage rider for this imported Stallion that has amazing paces. Which of course if you google his name you will see a few videos from the European Stallion shows the display his incredible canter.
Worth a try anyway so I penned my words into a nice short little rhyming piece. Got the news I had won on Mother’s Day I think it was actually, as my dear Mum was quite thrilled!
Thankfully it’s a quieter period at work so I can take off mid week to ride a super fancy horse! I was pretty excited!
Left home a little earlier (though not so early that everyone froze) so we could have a look and a sit in the Equipe Saddles at Trailrace. I have ridden in a couple of models and was keen to see what the brown looked like. I am now 100% sold in a Equipe Emporio in Brown! I like the feel of this model and you could easily get away with it in the Show Ring.
Onto Amberwood Park and Stedinger! It was simply awe-inspiring to watch Gina riding him. I would very much look forward to seeing them both in a freestyle test as the work they produce is so expressive and Stedinger’s canter is totally world-class and an absolute highlight.
Not to mention he has a devine head and really is so leggy and elegant. There are quite a few Show Hunter horse mares I know off that would be such lovely crosses to him. The progeny would not only have the rideability but the good looks and the added height as he of course stands at 17.2 HH
Then it was my turn to jump aboard! He is certainly a bit taller than E’s great height of 14.3HH. He was really super, didn’t mind the change of rider and was happy to listen to what I was asking. No fuss and really enjoyable and I think I sat his big trots okay and we played around in the lateral work being coached by Gina. Lost that left stirrup a bit which is frustrating but it is improving so I can’t complain. His canter is soo gorgeous to ride, flying changes and half pass no problems 🙂 Gina had me ride some tempi’s which Stedinger was happy to do! Finished off with some piaffe and passage and phoar he can passage!
He was such a gentlemen and quite the dude on the ground. Better manners than my two boys anyday! A massive thankyou to Stedinger for being such a gorgeous horse, Revelwood Stud and David & Amanda Shoobridge to let someone ride one of their uber fancy stallions, Amberwood Park for allowing another person onboard and so close to a competition…and for getting him so pretty! Lastly but importantly to Chad’s Mum for getting me to enter. A fabulous opportunity that won’t be forgotten.
Video will be on the Revelwood Stud facebook page shortly
Well that’s one way to get back on the horse. Three days of showing. Anzac Day being breeds day at our local show and then back there for hack classes before a Hunter Valley show today.
Mildly appalled most people on Friday were riding without a poppy or rosemary in the very least.
Our local show is pretty dodgy in my opinion – minimal parking, uphill downhill to ride on and the sideshow rides being horrendously noisy. As it was both days we prepped Encore on the road parked a block away and walked in. Got the performances we wanted so happy there 🙂 Won a lovely flag rug donated by a local embroidery business.
Hunter Valley show today and it poured with rain just after we left. The show committee are wonderful and bright so it was such a lovely show to attend. I’ve judged here before and thought the same 🙂 E was very on the ball in the rain and won a pretty amazing red woolen rug. Donated by Rugrack
So very happy with Encore today, our first real week “in work” and he really seems to have stepped it up a notch. One would think after a relatively long break he might need a little encouragement but he has surprised me with exceptional work ethic and just so on the ball.
I decided it was time to attempt our last hurdle that was canter pirouettes. Perhaps I had a bit of a mental block, I thought they were really quite so much harder or at least the basic training.
So really a definite mental block…as we can canter half pass and canter along straight sitting for a few strides but I’d just never thought to ride a square or diamond shape, or travers in.
Not to mention the concept of walk pirouetting and then straight into a canter pirouette seemed completely unachievable. Proud to say E
proved me wrong and I think I’ve successfully muddled my way through teaching (or learning??) the raw basics of the movements.
I’ve decided I’ll have to man up and wear a boot from now on because I really do need spurs on. Not for the severity of the aid but more so the clarity…with flying changes it takes a few for him to realize the shoe against his side is me asking!
Nice to be back and having some good rides to make the early starts worthwhile.
Like a Bowerbird to blue things…I am so in love with this.
Well, I must say that wasn’t exactly the Canberra Royal we had planned….nor the lead up to Grand Nationals and Sydney Royal! Really disappointing there because Encore was looking and working the best he has yet. Guess there is always next year, if we are lucky enough to qualify. And of course very sad not to be riding my favourite big horse at GN’s!
A head/brain injury and a broken toe – For a smaller body part, I did a good job and obliterated my big toe/ball of my foot which one does need for walking, not to mention riding. At the moment my short term memory is hilariously bad. I forgot to put chaff in the feeds the other day. Things could be much worse, I hope the lovely Silva Martin can be back in the saddle in the future, even the smallest of trips can have the biggest consequences.
Anyway, I determined to try and make use of all this new found time somehow!! 🙂
I made myself useful by plaiting a tail before we left, it was also good to get some practice in before I do E’s later this week. Or at least plait at royal standard.
Gunning show ground isn’t that far off the federal highway and in between was a huge paddock with some very friendly horses. (Encore had friends!)!
We has definitely brought the rain with us as the show ground and surrounds looked very wet.
I usually don’t work E beforehand but seeing as how he had a big trip the day before I tacked him up in the lunge gear and we had a wander around for a while. The show turned out to be running quite slowly or at least a long wait as lots of other classes were on. Also a dilemma as the tones ambulance was called to an accident so everyone was off their horses until it was back. Fair enough because the sporting was fast and furious. I took a video of which I will upload later but I have never seen anything like it!
Our ridden Arabian derivative came up first and he worked perfectly and won it. In the Champion workout one of the flag races started which majorly startled Encore (5th spook in his life!). The judges called out for us to stop as she thought it was very unfair and didn’t want to give him a fright (her words). That was quite lovely of her as he isn’t one to behave like that and so she allowed him to run through his workout again which was foot perfect. The other horse worked very nicely and didn’t have any races mid workout but it was nice of the rider to be understanding enough of the situation that she didn’t seem annoyed. So he went Ch & Supreme Ridden Arab Deriv.
Another long wait I thought what the heck I will do my rider class. Actually turned out to be lots of people in it and the judge worked out about 12 people! E nailed the Champion workout for me which includes a sitting extension and extended canter…nothing terribly hard but he let me look pretty. Amusing thing was my phone rang mid workout (and not on silent!) so we had a nice bit if hunting themed music to ride to!
As we started the Galloway classes it absolutely pelted down, reins became hard to hold and my boots filled with water. The judge very kindly combined a lot of classes and judged then on the circle in an effort to run through things. Encore worked flawlessly considering the conditions and scored himself another tri colour. Some very nice horses in the class however I think being from the North Coast we are used to riding in torrential rain!
Seeing as how we were already soaked we stayed for the Ansa classes. I rode not very nicely as I was bloody frozen but Encore kept things together for me. He scored a new ANSA saddlecloth for his efforts.
Last was Supreme hack, days like this he is such a angel of a horse and it was pouring with rain harder than before. Horse land voucher in the bag! Woohoo!
I dropped the ramp and put him on the float saddle, ribbon and all and untacked him in there. I have never been so wet & cold, if if known it was going to rain like that I think we would have just left!
We were both surely grateful for hot showers & warm clothes!!! A good last show before the royal though.
So what a year that was! I am rather glad I started and kept us with this blog because it was a fairly interesting year, devastating and exceedingly brilliant all in one. One of the more poignant ones with many moments I will remember for a lifetime.
Starting the Year I didn’t really post any goals or achievements I wished to work towards. I think this post certainly lives up to its name. I would certainly never dreamt this time last year I would be in the position I am now, with the opportunities I have been given. Truly grateful to Ladies (and Gents) of the Aussie Dressage world for being so extremely generous with their time, knowledge and horses.
So here is my semi defining list of moments for 2013
1. Canberra Royal – I should really thank the giver of the biggest backhanded compliment I’ll probably ever receive. Opened my eyes up 🙂
2. Boneo Park – The gorgeous facilities but more importantly meeting a wonderful new friend, getting a ride on a gorgeous WB.
3. Miss S arriving. Everybody involved was so incredibly nice and went out of their way!
4. Lost my Louis dog, so suddenly. Forever Loved. I clipped our little Lochie today and shed a few tears in that familiar face looking back at me.
5. I did finish my exams, admittedly the months leading up to my final exam around June was a very hard slog. Thankfully passed my final unit and got the results back the day after I paid the deposit on S.
So a year of ups and downs. Hello 2014.