Winona HT

I’m not going to lie… Emotionally, this was a tough, tough week for me.  I had high hopes of taking Grasshopper to the Jersey Fresh 3* this week… My date book was completely blocked off, plans were made, fitness countdowns on my desktop…  This was the week I was waiting for.  Needless to say, that meant a lot of tears (in private) this week.

Instead, I entered Winona HT in Ohio.  I wanted to keep my brain busy, so I entered 6 horses at BN to T.   What I didn’t think about was that only one was experienced—ALL others were doing a move-up, or their first event!  Talk about staying busy.

The results this weekend, numerically on paper, to be honest, were easily the worst of my career.  But in all honesty, it was really successful.  All of the babies had their own little baby moments, but all came home having learned a TON and being better for it.   Honestly, I’ve only had a couple of stops total on young horses in the last few YEARS cross country, and I had that many today… But they are all exciting prospects for the future, young and learning and are better for having seen the world this weekend.

We’ll dedicate this weekend to looking towards the hope of the future and looking forward to tomorrow…

Berke did his first Training.  He is usually stellar in all three phases… The traveling, 8am ride time and chilly morning unnerved him for dressage, and he was much more explosive than usual for 41.  That carried over into showjumping, where he was spookier than a cat at a dog show at the first three fences.  On cross country, he stopped at a double down banks–he’s never seen anything like it before, and a stop at the water.  He is a 6yo warmblood, full of talent and opinionated as hell…  He will be a VERY special horse.  Today he learned a ton, and finished the course a 10x better horse than he started.  (By the second half of the course he was a whole new horse!  The pictures are phenomenal.)  Watch out for this one in the future!

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Ex had a great dressage test for 36… He was a star!  His jump style has completely changed and he’s just figuring it out… New skills! He had a couple of unfortunate/unusual rails while figuring this out, but was very honest and tried hard.   On XC, he had one very honest peek at the double down banks at training (has never seen anything like that) before popping right down it.  He was really quite good and I was very happy with him.  He was completely game everywhere else.

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Ryan was enthusiastic in dressage… Unlike him, since he frequently scores in the 20’s… But he was very good in SJ and XC to round out a good weekend.   He was happy, confident, and a cool customer in both jumping phases…   Gotta be happy with that!

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Cody was stellar all weekend…. 30 in dressage to sit in 2nd in his first horse trial!  Double clean SJ round—a bit green, but it’s his first time ever!  On XC he was great… Looky, but jumped everything cleanly and like a star.  Then at the end of the round I learned I missed a fence!!  He would have been 2nd… I am still kicking myself—what a silly mistake.  I haven’t done that in years… Sigh, what can you do? I gave him a pat and a carrot and told him he was brilliant.  He’ll get ’em next time.

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Finn also did his first HT…. He was a little worried in dressage (his very first show!!), and a little green in SJ for one rail but tried his best.  On XC he was GREAT!  We had a long drive home so we headed home before his scores were up.  He was double clean and I was happy…   Only to check the scores hours later to see they gave him 60 jump faults somewhere??   Oh well, he’s not for sale so it really doesn’t matter, one of those silly things in life.  We had a 7 hour drive home… Cie la vie.

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This was my second show back with Spot Treatment.  He was brilliant!  A really steady solid confident test for 32 in dressage. One of a very few double clean SJ rounds, didn’t touch a thing.  And he rocked XC… It was so easy for him!  What a star he is…. What a special horse.    He WON!!!!   I am so elated for him… He really deserved it!

It’s good to be home… Think we have some really need young horses waiting in the wings… And I think they all learned a ton this weekend. Special thanks to Emily and Andrea who were OUTSTANDING grooms this weekend!  You guys rock!!!

We have only been to Winona HT once before, about 8 years ago. I met so many wonderful people this weekend and saw some lovely horses.  It was great fun seeing old friends and meeting new ones.  The weather was ideal, the cross country courses had a full gammot of things to play with, and I think it was great for the youngsters to see new questions at a new venue.

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About widespreadpanic

Advanced level event rider and instructor at Team CEO Eventing in Lexington KY.
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2 Responses to Winona HT

  1. Pingback: P Dutty’s Monday News and Notes from Success Equestrian : EVENTING NATION

  2. WT Thomas says:

    Megan — Glad you are all safe and sound at home – – and a fantastic weekend. Agree you have some special young horses – – and will be great to watch their progress and success. Have a great week. Todd and Nancy

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