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Rachel Skirvin


About Rachel Skirvin

Hoosier, Eventer, Paramedic, Mom

Eventing Background

USEA Rider Profile Click to view profile
Area 8
Highest Level Competed preliminary
Farm Name Bay Run Farm
Trainer local greats and amazing clinicians

Latest Articles Written

Flying Cross Fantasticness

This past weekend, Lyric and I headed south to Flying Cross for our second recognized training level event. Since we live in the sticks, we took the scenic route, all the way down IN 421 to KY 42. There wasn’t a stretch of straight road, we saw mansions and shacks, a nature preserve, tiny towns, crops (FYI, the giant cabbages are actually tobacco), crossed the river, then saw some feral people that all smiled and waved, and it was all beautiful and so much better than taking the boring dumb interstate.

I’ll admit that I haven’t gone to Flying Cross in the past few years because I’ve been in the sandbox (boo, hiss). With Squiggie out of commission, I decided to take the opportunity for another event, and I’m glad I did. The show is what all eventing should strive to be, held at an established farm run by people who love the sport. The organization was amazing, scores were posted quickly, the rings were maintained and the cross country was fun yet challenging. Mary Lowry and her crew deserve medals for all their hard work. Most importantly, every single person I met was friendly and seemed happy to be there.

I’m lucky and cool enough to have lots of friends. My friend Stacy came from northern Indiana with her RV, so I invited myself to stay with her. Stacy is a pretty fun person, so I figured if nothing else, we would have a good time. Which we did. With some vodka. Like two bottles. Maybe.

Stacy blazing ahead of a delicious beverage. Pic cred my iPhone.

Lyric decided to be compliant in dressage and went around in a fake-ish frame 85% of his test, and only ear tipped me in the nostrils once, which for him is wonderful. He went on to jump around like a rock star and left all the sticks up in stadium. We were done on Saturday by 11 a.m., which leaves tons of time to relax, hang out with friends, have a drink and begin the worrying process about how gigantic cross country fence #8 was. But first, competitors party! Amazing food, the macaroni had all the carbs and more, a live band, door prizes, did I mention every competitor got a free t-shirt? Did I also mention how awesome this event is?

Saturday we broke the RV. We still had AC, but no water, which sucked because it was hot and we smelled like the south end of a vodka pickled mule. So, we used what the half dead water pump spritzed us with and wash ragged as much dirt off as we could. We walked the course one more time, continued to worry about #8, the table of death, and retired to our RV.

Sunday I got up, cheered on some Prelim friends, walked the course one more time, nervous pooped, forced myself to eat half a granola bar since I was shaky, which meant my blood sugar was probably 25 or 550, one or the other. I got on and immediately felt better. The time finally came and Lyric was absolutely amazing. My pucker factor went away after the death table and I almost bit it in the water, but it was SO MUCH FUN, and MY HORSE IS AWESOME. I hopped off after the finish and embarrassed him all the way back to the stall by telling him loudly in front of all his friends what a good boy he was.

We ended up with a huge pink ribbon, which Lyric wore with pride like the unmasculine dorky gelding he is. I’m thrilled with his progress this year and I’m excited to see where we can go in our crazy sport. We went home the way we came, through the hills, turns, over the river and back to Shelbyville. I was happy to see the kids and the farm still in one piece, but I’m looking forward to heading back to KY and doing it all again very soon.

No sticks shall be touched. Photo courtesy of Vics Pics.

Hello Eventing Nation!

Lyric and I after a clean but soggy Training level cross country finish at Penny Oaks. Photo by Rachel Skirvin. 

My name is Rachel and I wear many hats. I’m a mom, a paramedic, a riding instructor, a trainer, a Pony Club supporter, and of course, an eventer. Staying busy and diverse keeps me out of trouble. It also makes for lots and lots of things to talk and write about. Just in the past few weeks, I’ve made a solo trip to the metal scrap yard (terrifying and fascinating at the same time), removed five spitting, hissing, feral kittens from the barn and placed them into my bathroom, taken my first homebred around his first Training level event after battling EPM, ulcers, lameness and a hatred of the sandbox (him, not me, I tolerate it…), got attacked by ground bees while bush hogging and ended up in the ER with a complementary epi/Benadryl/steroid combo, convinced my last patient not to eat their blanket and pulse ox probe, and failed to notice when the 18 month old child pilfered a giant carving knife out of the dishwasher and placed it in the dog cage. It’s never ever dull around here.

I’ve been riding since I was 7 years old, which means it’s been a long time. I did my first recognized event over 20 years ago on my first horse, who I still have and who now begrudgingly totes around my 4 year old son. She is destined for sainthood. I have come to love my big bay gelding, he has turned out to be pretty awesome, but I have a soft spot for mares — the small, red and feisty are my favorites. If you get one to trust and appreciate you, you have a gangster friend for life. Piss them off and they will end you. In your sleep. I can respect that.

Raising small humans is the hardest job in the world, but it’s also the most rewarding. I totally get the momma bear mentality. Hurt my kids and I will go red mare on you. But I can also understand the moms who drive their station wagon off the bridge into the river. Sometimes you have to place yourself in the bathroom and take a five-minute Facebook break, with the feral kittens, all while screams of “Mommy!!! Mommy!!! MMMOOOOOOMMMMYYYYY!!???” ring through the house and tiny fingers make valiant attempts at entrance under the locked bathroom door.

My horses, my sport and my family have made me who I am. Being a new blogger for EN is super exciting for me! I promise adventure, laughs and insanity, and not just in the middle…