Three Eventful Weeks
Before I get into the long list of what “the boys” have been up to, let me lead by updating on our singular mare- Pandora. Pandora’s First Avatar, a 6 year old OTTB, does not actually belong to Tebogo, but as Katie Adam’s main horse. She arrived here with Katie as a weedy, somewhat insecure 4 year old filly, who was a tad uncertain about her ability to jump crossrails. But oh how she has matured into a complete and total eventing rock star of a mare. This past weekend she and Katie contested both their first ever FEI 1*. Not only did they complete (which I was always lead to believe would be a perfectly acceptable goal for one’s first one star) - they came in second! Our whole team was thrilled and proud of both Katie and Pandora on this impressive accomplishment.
Success at the Horse Trials
With her for the weekend was Tebogo’s own Mr. Steady Eddy – Snowbird. Snowy has been with us since last November and has come along in leaps and bounds. This past weekend at Virginia Horse Trials he put in a solid dressage test, a flawless cross country run and pulled one rail during his stadium round in the big, echoey intimidating Collesium. He was so very good both under saddle and back in the barns where he acted as if living at the Virginia Horse Center with all its hustle and bustle were entirely normal for a baby OTTB to contend with. He finished fifth in his big Open Novice division. This is a beautiful addition to his already lovely USEA record. Just two weeks earlier Snowy placed fifth at Plantation Fields May Horse Trial.
(Here is where Grubby Soldier, a new addition to the Tebogo string, but a long time Vos horse, would like it to be mentioned that while it was nice for young Snowy to come in fifth, HE actually came in FIRST at that same horse trial! )
Cross Training at Crosswinds
With a slight lull between horse shows, Paige Cade took it upon herself to get our hunter/jumper charges cross-trained with a little cross country action. You’ll recall in our last entry that she had signed young Stanley up for a starter horse trial. They rocked it, both finishing cross country with big smiles. Given his exceptional performance Paige was encouraged enough to enter Stanley into a recognized event at the end of June and enlisted Jenn Simmons to help her prepare. This past Memorial Day, while most Americans were picnicking, grilling and shopping, Paige headed over to Crosswinds with Stanley, and for added fun and challenge, Seattle, who has never ever been cross country schooling. Both boys were nothing short of amazing. Stanley was, per his norm, brave and forward to every new obstacle before him. And Seattle was clever, smart and impressive over each and every jump. I’ve seen a lot of horses attempt their first bank and ditch and I don’t recall one being quite as natural and easy about it as Seattle.
A Little Education, New Skills
Seattle was mostly along for the ride and some cross training. We had never intended to event him. In fact, his next outing is the Upperville Horse Show where he will compete in the 1.o meter division. In life it’s nice to have options. And Seattle has certainly shown that with his new-found cross country prowess that he indeed has many options open to him. That’s what life at Tebogo is supposed to be about for these guys. Not a great racehorse? No worries. A little education, some new skills, and viola! Every horse here has options!