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Blogger Lauren Sprieser

July 20, 2011

Lexington, Day 4: The Grand Finale

Our final day at Lexington continued our good fortune, though everyone—two-leggers and four-leggers alike—was pretty pooped.

Tres had a much better Grand Prix that wasn't reflected in the score, and I rode Ella like her hair was on fire, with GREAT success… until the canter. The trot, piaffe and passage scores were all much higher, the walk was the same, and then I made dumb mistake after dumb mistake in the canter stuff. And hey, guess where all the coefficients are hiding in the Grand Prix test? The canter! Doh!

July 16, 2011

Lexington, Day 3: Good Rides and Great People

Thank goodness for great helping hands! Our team had 11 rides today, beginning at 8:30 and ending after 4, and I would absolutely have keeled over sometime after lunch were it not for my amazing Stephanie and for my awesome student Allison and her parents, who drove down solely to hang out with us for the weekend. How amazing is that?

July 15, 2011

Lexington, Day 2: Party's Over

The weather continues to be swell, but other than that, the party's over. This horse show thing is WORK!

July 15, 2011

Day 1 At Lexington: The Club Med Experience

I just freaking love Lexington!

We've had a good track record with karma here, and it certainly continued today. We had a pleasant drive down (although there is some bad tire juju in our camp; my poor student Mel, who'd had several breakdowns in a row, passed her bad moo onto my student Francine, who had to change a flat on the side of 81 today), the weather dropped 10 degrees, and all the horses worked like superstars. And then we had margaritas. This is the life, people!

July 13, 2011

Scooter Drama

For those who've never been to the Virginia Horse Center in Lexington, Va., it is a big, sprawling, lovely facility. It's got a gajillion showrings; even more schooling rings; oodles of big, airy barns; great electric outlets all over the place. There's a lot to love.

But it's impossible to make that big a facility also compact, so I knew I was going to be doing a lot of walking this coming weekend. Until ride times came out, though, I didn't really think about it. Then I sat down to make up my schedule.

It is total chaos.

July 5, 2011

Flying Changes

Ella was my first young horse, and she came into my life just as I was graduating from college and venturing out on my own as a professional rider. It was a HUGE transition, going from having Lendon Gray's eyes on me daily to making training decisions for myself. And knowing what I know now, I made so many mistakes it's amazing she didn't stomp me to little blonde bits.

June 29, 2011

PVDA Ride For Life And Tres' Grand Prix Debut

Finally! Some horse shows!

I've been really frothing at the mouth for the last couple of weeks, watching all my friends go to shows. I promised my clients that, because I'd gone to Florida, they could have the early-in-the-season shows, and I'd get my own guys out when the weather turned foul mid-summer. But for whatever reason they didn't get ready to show until this late in the year, too. So off we went, five horses, to the PVDA Ride For Life in Maryland.

June 22, 2011

Back In The Game

What a week. I took a quick (no kidding—about 50 hours, including traveling!) trip to London with my mom and was rewarded with the nastiest head cold/flu I think I've ever had, certainly in my adult life. I spent THREE DAYS in bed. I've NEVER spent three days in bed.

It was torture. Naturally they were three of the most beautiful days we've had, cool and breezy. And all the horses are going so well, and I had a ton of lessons I had to cancel… ugh. And all I could do was go from bed to the couch, and back again. Charming.

June 6, 2011

Rubbing Bottles

Hop on the bulletin boards and you'll see that we have, at least in the eyes of the Internet-literate dressage population, a crisis in the sport. Whether it's criticism towards judges and the way they judge, or riders and the way they ride, or countless other issues, there's a lot that could be better in American dressage sport.

June 2, 2011

Cletus 2.2!

Cletus 2.2 is here! The second of the 2011 Cleo ET babies arrived at a reasonably civilized hour on Saturday morning and is doing swimmingly. This one is "out" of a cute drafty looking mare named Boo, who actually reminds me a lot of Cleo—big, gray and in-your-face.

Baby herself has a big blaze—not as big as Radinka (aka Cletus 2.1), but bigger than her full sister Fairvoya, the yearling—and two asymmetrical hind socks. She's also the sweetest one so far, and she was an awfully good sport about letting me crawl all over her. Farrah barely let me touch her until this year.

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