Wednesday, September 15, 2010

The Fall season is in full swing!

With the AECs and WEG news the past week - I've almost forgotten that I have my own training and competition calendar to get through before I earn my week off to be one of the 350,000 or so WEG spectators! I've already got a pile of Team USA flair and bling ready to be packed - let there be no doubt who I want to see go home with a fistful of Gold medals!

It was so hard to watch the AEC coverage, knowing Katchi and I could have been there, right in the middle all the craziness & excitement. But it was the right decision for our training and long term goals. And with our win at Seneca this fall, we're well on our way to being qualified for AECs 2011. On her way home from the event, I spoke to a former student who was grooming at the AECs as part of her working student gig for Jim Graham and David Adamo - yes, Amanda, I am terribly jealous of your adventures! She said the final official AEC horse count was 703! Wow. There were 54 in the class Katchi would have been in, and I figured if he'd put in one of his better dressage performances, a clear XC, and pulled 1 show jumping rail - he should have finished up around 20-25th place. Respectable, especially considering we would have been competing against Training horses ridden by Karen O'Connor, Jennie Brannigan, Allison Springer...

Meanwhile, back in Maryland - I spent last Saturday at the Fair Hill unrecognized HT with a student, Kerry, who was competing in her first HT since dabbling in it a bit as kid. Some people like teaching and some people don't. I like it. Bill Moroney said in a recent COTH article, "The ability to bring people to a level where you can set them free and they can rely on your teachings to make their own path in life is by far the greatest reward I've experienced in my training career." I get that feeling every time I watch a student head out on course, and come back all smiles! It changes something in their confidence, inner peace, happiness, enthusiasm for life - yes, I still have more to teach Kerry and she still has more to learn. But, this was a huge milestone for Kerry and Atticus. Atticus came off the course knowing he's now "a BIG BAD event horse" (we won't tell him that his 14 Intro XC jumps could probably fit into the ditch in front of the Keeper's Brush at Rolex!). With a solid dressage test, and two double clear jumping rounds, they finished up in 3rd place out of a class of 9. Not too shabby! Video by Patrick was out on course - what great videos he makes! If he's at your show - buy the video! And, don't worry - if you fall off at the first jump, you get the video for free! Check out Kerry & Atticus in the photo and video below.

I'll try to embed the video later - in the meantime - here's the link.

This weekend is Marlborough HT - I've got Katchi plus 2 students competing on Sunday. If you're in the neighborhood, come say hello! Look for the sparkly Golightly-Katchi mobile, pulled by the not so sparkly grey/rust ol'faithful truck!

Ride times:

Cherie & Katchi (Training)
Dressage: 8:18 (Ring 2)
SJ: 11:04
XC: 11:24

Adrianne & Tori (Beginner Novice)
Dressage: 10:50 (Ring 2)
SJ: 1:30
XC: 1:50

Debi & Roxanne (Beginner Novice)
Dressage: 11:00 (Ring 2)
SJ: 1:34
XC: 1:54

My mom flew in last week for a couple of weeks in Maryland before we make the drive out to WEG. She's been enjoying quality time with Katchi - but today and tomorrow are big treats for her... we're off to work with Silva this afternoon and have a show jumping lesson with Jimmy tomorrow. Isn't that what every mom wants to do on her vacation?? Well, I know at least one who does!

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