Monday, September 22, 2014

Best.Event.Ever... even better than last year!

Most of my younger years of eventing were spent in California and at that time I would have day dreams about galloping across golf courses because their grass looked like it was made for horse hooves.  We were actually told specifically at the Pebble Beach course that it was a $100 fine per horse hoof on the turf!  This last weekend I was living the dream.  Bright green grass, rolling hills, fun HUGE jumps and I was sitting on three great horses.

Above is a video clip of Puttin on the Ritz at the first combination on his 2* course, the angled houses. This horse was foot perfect that day- I mis read how to ride a combination late on course and so we got a run by penalty there.  As far as I'm concerned he has no idea that he didnt win, as he did in my eyes. That was a great ride.  I feel like I'm back flying across the land on a smart and scopey horse that likes to have fun- just like it was in the Charly days.  Soon I'll have the whole video- so check back in :)

The Diesel Boy came to Plantation ready to dominate- then I sort of mis handled his dressage warm up and created a wild child instead of a fancy obedient one.  Lesson learned!  He ended up with clean jump rounds across a tough 1 star track, I am so amazed at how far this boy has come.  Bristol Indian was my last dressage ride and he put in a real solid effort, I love that this horse is the same in the arena as in the show ring- we will keep doing our homework and will just keep remembering that turtle and the hare story.  :)  This guy was a blast to show jump and although a little sleepy like on cross country he was extremely honest.  Next time I'm going to practice finding the gas pedal.

Robyn Weaver and Azrael are a new partnership at the Preliminary level and wow were they put to the test with the jump rounds this weekend.  In a way only Robyn could she took "Kevin" from being totally overwhelmed and nervous in the beginning of the show jump course to being confident and proud of himself.  This was amazing to watch and the confidence carried over to their foot perfect cross country course.  This pair dominated at training level this year and I'm so proud of them for tackling these BIGGER questions and figuring out a bit more about the game every time out.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

RIDE TIMES for Plantation CIC September 18-21st

Here is a link to the overall schedule for the weekend and below are MK Equestrian's ride times.... come and visit!

2:02 Puttin on the Ritz- CIC 2 star dressage

8:41 The Diesel Boy - CIC 1 star dressage
9:38 Robyn Weaver - Preliminary dressage
1:38 Erin Nolan - CIC 1 star dressage
4:25 Bristol Indian - CIC 1 star dressage

7:36 The Diesel Boy - SJ
8:38 Erin Nolan - SJ
9:20 Bristol Indian - SJ
10:08 Robyn Weaver - SJ then XC
2:44 Putitn on the Ritz - SJ
2-4pm CIC 1 star xc - Erin, Bristol and Leto

8:15- 11am CIC 2 star xc - Puttin on the Ritz

Monday, September 15, 2014

How does MKE prepare for the biggest events of the fall....?

We keep busy!

This up-coming weekend is an event I've been preparing for and waiting for pretty much all season.  The best event ever.... Plantation Field!!!!  I'm absolutely beyond excited as I'll have 3 horses competing in FEI classes, pretty much a life long dream to have the ride on 3 great horses at a great event with wonderful people around me.  I've got it set up right where I want it-- well hopefully!  I did loose my stupendous coach to the WEGS and 2 other huge events over seas, so preparation was unfortunately more on my own that I'd love.  But I kept his voice in my head every time I jumped and this next weekend we'll see how that worked!

I don't think it's very healthy to agonize over small details for too long so my weeks preparing for big events like this I like life to be normal. Which for me means busy.

Last event was every bit that and added to it I'd like to say we all had a pretty great time :)  On Saturday I rode Masterel in his first BN event to a 2nd place finish.  Masterel is a horse that Denis Glacuum and I picked up as an OTTB project about 8-9 months ago.  I believe firmly in letting the initial months of non race track life be nothing but relaxing good stuff... and that's what we did.  Masterel went to Aiken and learned how to hack, step over solid logs and has been attempting to toughen up and be a pasture pony (at least for a few hours every day!).  This summer his training has really stepped up and I am beyond thrilled with the horse we have.  Masterel is one of the most independent horses I've ever trained; he absolutely loves his training time and mostly his time out on the xc course.  His gallop stride just takes him right in stride to his jumps and gives you an amazing feeling.  This is all in due thanks to the vets of Equine Veterinary Care who saw him and forwarded on his information to us.  Dr. Arensburg has a good eye!

At fair hill we finally got rain, we got wet and we loved it :)  Sarah Dawson and her horse proved that they have been great pupils and finished novice like it was elementary with no help by me (time conflicts!) Bri Beiler and her "camp" horse were 2nd after dressage and just had a few xc slipping problems but finished like the true champs they are and last but not least Vanessa Stolzfus and her new addition Teddy Sarco completed their first event to bring home a 3rd place ribbon!  Thank you so much to Ryan Woods and his crew for the great training on Teddy!

As if that wasn't enough fun we did it all over again starting at 4am on Sunday, but this time at Seneca Valley PC horse trials.

I rode Kynymont's Rio at his first Novice and Cute as a Bug also in novice.  Both of these horses are with me as sales horses learning the ropes as we go.  Both horses were phenomenal, I couldn't have asked them to be better.  Dr. Steve Berkowitz set down the grill/camera/thermometer for the day and enjoyed himself a near perfect Novice event on Zoomalong.  In my mind it was perfect, I think Steve would agree as well.  Steve has worked hard all season on getting him and the Zoom-ster to be in harmony on the flat and over fences.  This they were.  Smooth dressage - in 3rd, clean and PERFECT sj to move to 2nd, faultless cross country with just too big of turns incurring some time faults to give away the red ribbon.  I know they'll dominate next time, so watch out!

All of this excitement while keeping the CIC horses in condition in prepped for the best event ever--- takes an amazing support group of a very understanding husband and SUPER hard working head groom.


Monday, September 08, 2014

Cute as a Bug- FOR SALE

Cute as a Bug finishing without any jumping penalties at his first recognized novice.  This guy has lots of ribbons and levels ahead of him.  Priced to sell, owner has too many horses and not enough time.

Sunday, September 07, 2014

MKE gearing up for the fall season after a great summer

I knew that things had been rolling along at a quick pace here at MKE but I didn't realize that it was nearly 4 months ago since I really made a proper up date!

Here in Area II we are lucky to have an abundance of things to do with our horses.  Having said that I'm a firm believer that you shouldn't wait for your horse to have a problem (health or otherwise); you should choose times within the year to lighten up on their work loads.  "The dream team" aka Benny, Bristol and Leto all competed in the CCI at VA in May and after that had an "easier" month - no competitions just lots of flat work and hacks.  Then they competed at the New Jersey Horse Park, MD horse trials and Millbrook.  We are aiming at the CIC at Plantation in a few weeks so my game plan was to give them a few easier weeks after Millbrook then work on their conditioning and skill sets (jumping and dressage) as our Plantation prep- I felt we had done lots of competitions and should stay home with our heads focused with our fall goals ahead.  If Plantation goes well I'll be looking towards a CCI with Benny and a possibly move up with Bristol and Leto... fingers crossed!

At the barn theres been some exciting horse switching going around.  We found "Rissa" her dream home with a wonderful long time eventing supporter.  Rissa now lives in luscious Virginia and will get to do some jumping and show off her lovely dressage gaits.  My student, Vanessa, was doing some horse shopping this summer and I'm super excited to say that we have a wonderful chestnut Irish gelding in the barn named "Teddy Sarco".  Vanessa is one of the most interesting young ladies I've had the pleasure to work with so I very much so look forward to many adventures ahead!  We also have welcomed in Densey and Ron Juvonen who have brought over their group of hunt horses.  The Juvonens and their right hand man Goyo have brought a lot of joy to the farm and you'll most likely see them out hunting with Andrews Bridge as that's their true horse passion :)

At the moment we have 3 horses with us for sale; all very athletic and promising individuals.  More videos and pictures to follow on these guys- ranging from 15 hands to 16.3hands- let me know if you're in the market!

It feels weird to have taken a few weekends off of competing, something about being an eventer... we aren't allowed to miss anything!  I am so far very happy with the schedule; I feel like it's giving us time to really get things ready for our fall season.  This last Saturday I put on my first "Dressage Play Day" aka DPD as it'll be known from here forward.  This was an in-house fix a test of sorts - but was held for so many more reasons.  I made sure to make it as "show like" as possible; flowers, judge canopy, etc... and it worked!  Some horses were nervous at first and more than one rider forgot a movement, had a show panic, etc etc... but most of all they all got to practice a test they've never ridden and figure out how to make it even better for the second go round.  I had a great time watching MKE's lovely riders and equally nice horses.  I can't wait for more of these!

Probably the most exciting part of this summer came just about a month ago.  My two favorite boys have joined together and became a team.  HAVARAH"S CHARLY IS BACK!!!!!!  Charly has been hanging out around the barn for awhile now, just waiting for the right situation to come about and then it happened.  My husband decided it was time to utilize Charly's SKILLZ and learn some dressage.  He even rode in the DPD and it was a glorious sight, Charly is moving so well and with just a few weeks of dressage riding Bryce has really turned a corner.  Charly is still pretty young, '98 baby, but at this point in time we are going to keep him just strutting his stuff in the dressage arena so he can stay healthy and fancy for many years to come.

11 day countdown to the BEST.EVENT.EVER!  Can't wait :)