Leslie Wylie
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Leslie Wylie


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Weekend Instagram Roundup: Intercollegiate Eventing Spirit

Windridge, Pine Hill, Tryon Riding & Hunt Club, Virginia, Chattahoochee Hills … USEA Intercollegiate Eventing Challenges have been heating up autumn events throughout the Areas 2 and 3 this month. Still to come this year, Challenges are set to take place at Poplar Place (Nov. 9-12), River Glen (Nov. 11-12) and Pine Top (Nov. 25-26).

We love that this great program has taken off like a rocket since its inception in 2014, and it’s fun to see the energy and camaraderie that these riders bring to events. Here are a few team photos shared on Instagram from the last couple weeks! It’s by no means a conclusive roster of teams that participated, so feel to share more pics in the comments.

Learn more about the USEA Intercollegiate Eventing Program here.

Alabama at Chattahoochee Hills H.T.

Even on a by week the tide keeps rolling! #RideTideRide #rtr

A post shared by Alabama Eventing (@alabamaeventing) on


Transylvania at Chattahoochee Hills H.T.

Transy flag flying high

A post shared by Transylvania U. Eventing Team (@tuequestrian) on

Early mornings for the team!

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Clemson at Chattahoochee Hills H.T.

Virginia Tech at Virginia H.T.


Good luck to all our teammates and everyone else competing @vahorsecenter this weekend!

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Maryland at Waradaca H.T.

The Maryland Eventing Team had an awesome day volunteering in the vet box this past weekend at the @waredacafarm Classic 3-Day Event!

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NC State at Tryon Riding & Hunt Club H.T.


USC Aiken at Tryon Riding & Hunt Club H.T.

UGA at Tryon Riding & Hunt Club H.T.

Go Eventing!

Best of JN: Reporting Live from Washington International Horse Show

Amanda Derbyshire and Lady Maria BH as Alice in Wonderland and the White Rabbit. Photo by Lorraine Jackson via “GALLERY: Every Rider, Every Angle from WIHS Costume Jumper Class.”

Jumper Nation editor-in-chief Lorraine Jackson has been bringing us all the action live this week from Washington International Horse Show! The show is always a fun one to follow — annual favorites include the Costume Jumper Class, Shetland Pony Steeplechase and Puissance, in addition to prestigious hunter and equitation championships and monied jumper classes. Spectators this year witnessed an extra special moment on Friday: the final win and subsequent retirement of McLain Ward’s veteran Nations Cup partner and 2014 World Cup Final mount HH Carlos.

Lorraine has been JN’s boots on the ground and is clearly having a grand time with the coverage. Here’s a list of links to her coverage thus far — keep an eye on Jumper Nation and the JN Facebook page for more to come!

A DC local is charmed by the WIHS mini mascot outside the Capital One Arena. Photo by Lorraine Jackson via “Postcards from WIHS.”

Wednesday, Oct. 25
WIHS Livestream is Happening Now! Get the Details Here
Jef Lauwers and Sutherland Score $10,000 WIHS Adult Hunters Championship
Washington First-Timer Anna Kubiak Wins $10,000 WIHS Children’s Hunter Championship

Thursday, Oct. 26
With 10 Leading Hunter Rider Wins, We Declare Scott Stewart King of WIHS
Who Jumped it Best? WIHS Handy Hunter Trot Fence Edition
Postcards from WIHS
Kama Godek’s Scarecrow Costume Is the Best Thing on the Internet

Friday, Oct. 27
WATCH: Beezie Madden and Breitling LS Phenomenal, Unstoppable in WIHS FEI Welcome Class
GALLERY: Every Rider, Every Angle from WIHS Costume Jumper Class, Presented by Draper Therapies
WATCH: Catherine Tyree and Bokai Slay in First FEI Class at WIHS
WATCH: McLain Ward’s HH Carlos Wins Final Class Before Retirement From Competition

Saturday, Oct. 28
Aaron Vale Soars to Rafters With WIHS Puissance Win
Emma Kurtz Rides Dedication to Grand Junior Hunter Championship
Ava Stearns Makes Intentions Known, Winning Both Rounds of WIHS Eq Before Final Work-Off

Sunday, Oct. 29
Taylor St. Jacques Battles Back From Sixth to Win Lindsay Maxwell Charitable Fund WIHS Equitation Final

US Equestrian Names 2018 Eventing 18 Program Participants

Mallory Hogan and Clarissa Purisima. Photo by Shelby Allen.

US Equestrian has just released the 2018 Emerging Athletes Eventing 18 Program Participants List! These riders will be invited to participate in winter training sessions with USEF Eventing Emerging Athlete Coach Leslie Law.

The Emerging Athletes List designates athletes with the potential to evolve into future team candidates.

Eventing 18 Accepted Participants
Alexandra Baugh (Georgetown, Ky.)
Joe Bowersox (North East, Md.)
Mia Braundel (Clayton, N.C.)
Haley Carspecken (Purcellville, Va.)
Kalli Core (Orange, Texas)
Isabella Dowen (Santa Barbara, Calif.)
Mia Farley (San Clemente, Calif.)
Cosby Green (Lexington, Ky.)
Mallory Hogan (Belvedere, Calif.)
Carson Richards (Charleston, S.C.)
Alice Roosevelt (Stanfordville, N.Y.)
Madison Temkin (Sebastopol, Calif.)
Sophie Tice (Danville, Calif.)
Megan Traynham (Arbuckle, Calif.)
Delaney Vaden (Nevada City, Calif.)

In addition to those participating in the training sessions, other athletes will be able to audit the training sessions and participate in lectures on horse management, physiotherapy and show jumping course design.

Eventing 18 Auditing Participants
Isabella Gunningham (Medina, Wash.)
Maia Kantorowski (Aberdeen, N.C.)
Ryan Keefe (Sandy Spring, Md.)
Maddie McElduff (Ocala, Fla.)
McKinsey Wickman (Prosper, Texas)

Congrats to all the riders named!

Mike Huber, Chairman of the USEF Eventing Sport Committee and Emerging Athlete Working Group, explains the selection process:

“We look at each rider’s resume and videos, and in many cases we have seen them ride in person. We look for talent from the rider or the horse/rider combination’s talent — selection is based more on the rider than the horse’s ability. We are looking for riders who will ultimately go to the highest level, and we are there to nurture that talent along. We look forward to having the repeat riders that are joining us from last year, and we are excited about the new riders. When they get into the training sessions, we begin to see what they are made of.”

Leslie Law adds, “We are looking for talent that will, hopefully, one day develop into high performance riders to represent the U.S. on an international level. Besides that, we are selecting those who have dedication. It’s a long road in equestrian sport, so dedication is important. We need to try to identify that [dedication] and those who are in it for the long haul and prepared to work hard for it.”

With regard to the new auditing portion of the program, he says, “We were looking for that next level of athletes who haven’t quite gotten there in one way or another yet, but we thought it would be a very good idea for them to be able to still join us at our January sessions and see what they are about. We do a lot of lectures before and after we ride, which is very beneficial. I think it is good to start bringing them in and involving them in some way. I thought it was a way to try to have them involved and see how they took it on forward.”

The Eventing 18 athletes’ winter training sessions will be located in Ocala, Fla., and Temecula, Calif. Confirmed dates will be forthcoming.

The Eventing 25 list of accepted and auditing participants will be released in late November 2017.

[US Equestrian Announces Emerging Athlete Eventing 18 Program Participants for 2018]

Thursday Video: How to Body Clip by SmartPak

Pretty sure Princess is plotting my death in this photo.

I hate body clipping. HATE. IT. Like, “I’m wearing two layers of clothing … how did one million tiny hairs still find their way into my bra?” Boggles the mind. But a couple times each year I have to suck it up and do the deed anyway, and last week the time was nigh.

Having good equipment helps. I’ve burned (literally) through a lot of clippers over the years and am most satisfied with my current model, the Andis AGC Super 2 Speed Clipper w/ T-84 Blade, which also happens to be featured in the video below! It’s relatively small and very lightweight compared to some of the hedge-trimmer calibur big guns I’ve used in the past, and so quiet that I can literally talk on the phone while I’m clipping. If only there was a 24-hour clipping support hotline I’d be set.

SmartPak, fortunately, offers some great resources, including this recently released body clipping tutorial featuring Megan, who grooms for Team SmartPak riders Chris and Jon McCrea. She demonstrates a clip and shares some tips and tricks along the way.

On the fence about clipping? Have questions about blankets? SmartPak has us covered with a virtual library of helpful guidelines and advice from pros — check it out here. And of course they’ve got a full selection of clippers and blades here.

Best of luck with your own body clipping journeys, EN. Go SmartPak. Go Eventing!


#EventerSolutions: We Figure It Out

When it comes to solving #EventerProblems, determination coupled with creativity goes a long way. Here are a few more of your most clever solutions to your most real struggles!

Normal dishes right??? #eventerproblems #eventersolutions #3dayeventing #goodhousewife

A post shared by Alexis (@clmbrchica) on

The Woodstock team gearing up for the morning #starbucks #againagain #neverstop #eventersolutions

A post shared by Rebecca Smith (@ras.eventing) on


Surgeon bestie doesn't know how to sew, but she does know how to suture. #eventerproblems #surgeonsolutions @boss_mare_

A post shared by Nicole Sharpe (@nicolegizelle) on



Go Eventing.

Let’s Discuss: Retro Eventing Stuff We Miss

I mean, there’s no telling how much this puppy would go for on eBay.

This one goes out to the crotchety old people of eventing — you know who you are. You think back fondly on the good old days, when your dressage test could be complete garbage but if you got over most of the jumps on first attempt you could still win an event. You like the way a hard-copy Omnibus feels in your hand, and given a couple glasses of wine you won’t shut up about how the short format ruined our sport. You despise newfangled anything and are given to waxing nostalgic about extinct events and long-gone horses (all Thoroughbreds, obviously). You can still close your eyes and hear the sound of petal bell boots: clackety-clackety-clackety-clackety-clack … it’s music to your ears. Kids these days, they couldn’t tell a petal bell boot from a Porter protector. They just don’t understand.

Or some variation on that theme. Listen, I get it. I am literally sitting here writing this in a USCTA sweatshirt. I’m not as early vintage as some of you reading this, but after almost 25 years of eventing I can at least play ball in the nostalgia department. Old and crotchety isn’t an age — it’s a state of mind.

Deep down I think we all know that change is healthy and dwelling on the past isn’t the most constructive use of our mental energy, but reminiscing can be a fun exercise in remembering why we fell in love with this sport in the first place. And that’s why we’re opening this week’s “Let’s Discuss” column up to the topic of …

What retro eventing stuff do you miss? Dive deep into those memory banks and let it rip, EN!

Weekend Instagram Roundup: These Are the Moments

There are moments when the stars align: the perfect ride, the best support crew, the most beautiful autumn day, or just a sudden, overwhelming burst of thankfulness for this life we get to live. Cherish those moments. Capture them, if you can. Share them, because joy is contagious.

Here are a few of your “moments” from the weekend that was, as seen at Waredaca Classic N/T3DE & H.T., Tryon Riding & Hunt Club H.T., Windermere Run H.T., Fresno County Horse Park H.T., and Hagyard Midsouth Classic 3DE, CCI, & H.T.


A post shared by Lisa Mellon Easton (@lmeaston) on






The face you make when your horse jumps his heart out for you❤️ pc: @hunter_carlton

A post shared by mikaylamathereventing (@mikaylamathereventing) on

#soproud #waredaca3day #c2ceventing

A post shared by Kenziiii 6.24.13 (@jokers.wild) on

#waredaca3day #c2ceventing

A post shared by Kenziiii 6.24.13 (@jokers.wild) on



hacked by frog and ella!!!

A post shared by Em Curtis (@your_mortal_emily) on

Go Eventing!

#EventerProblems Vol. 130: 8,343 Struggles Later …

8,343 struggles later you guys and your horses are still going strong. Keep up the good work, citizens of EN! And keep tagging ’em #EventerProblems on Instagram for inclusion in a future edition.





So not amused #OTTB #hematoma #coldhose #dmso #theregoesthefallseason #eventing #eventerproblems

A post shared by Emily Francis (@emmyofdeath) on


Ring dragging, way more satisfying than a little zen garden #t3eventing #farmlife #eventerproblems #johndeere

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Oh no! Somebody lost a shoe! #horseisms #eventerproblems

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Go Eventing.

How to Adopt Your New Mustang Event Prospect

Elisa Wallace and Hwin, who has competed through the Prelim level. Photo by Pam Doughty.

We love Mustang success stories here at EN. Trainability, intelligence, toughness, versatility, heart … they’re the total package, and if you can get your hands on a good one they’ll give you everything they’ve got. The next Hwin is out there, just waiting to be discovered!

Elisa Wallace and Hwin. Photo courtesy of Elisa Wallace.

So cool.

Check out the Mustang Sport Horses & Ponies Facebook page to see what equestrians from around the country are up to with their adopted mounts.

Love this recent photo from Utah eventer Meghan de Bruijn:

2003 Cedar Mountain mustang

Posted by Mustang Sport Horses and Ponies – Dressage, Eventing, Hunter, Jumper on Sunday, October 8, 2017

Thinking about taking the plunge? The Bureau of Land Management is preparing to hold its October Internet Adoption/Sale, featuring Mustangs available from Honor Farm, WY; Mantle Ranch, WY; Burns, OR; Palomino Valley, NV; Fallon, NV; Florence, AZ; Delta, UT; and Ewing, IL. Optional Eastern pickups are Ewing, IL (by appt); Ocala, FL (Jan 26) and Lebanon, TN (Feb 16).

Check out a gallery of the available Mustangs here. I have a serious crush on this 6-year-old, 15-hand mare in Hines, OR. Her face is so pretty …

Photo courtesy of the BLM.

… and how about her spring-loaded trot?

Photo courtesy of the BLM.

The auction runs Oct. 31 and through Nov. 14, and applications must be submitted between Oct. 23 until Nov. 10. You may submit a maximum proxy bid of $2,000 over the current bid.

Learn more by visiting the BLM Adopt-a-Horse page here.


#EventerFailFriday: Over, Under or Through

Way-over, not-quite-under or just-take-the-whole-fence-out … style be darned, we eventers are determined to get to the other side. Here are a few of our favorite #EventerFailFriday feats from the last few weeks!

Be sure to tag ’em on Instagram for inclusion in future editions!


#eventerfailfriday ft Simone photo bombing elementa's lovely up-bank jump

A post shared by Royal Rose Eventing (@royal_rose_eventing) on




My new favorite #eventerfailfriday "OH YES YOU ARE"- haley

A post shared by @haldonann on

Go Eventing.

What’s In Your Arena? Presented by Attwood: Triple of Barrels

What’s in Your Arena? is an EN series sponsored by Attwood Equestrian Surfaces in which riders share their favorite jumping exercises. It’s easy to get stuck in a training rut, and we hope this will inspire you with fresh ideas that you can take home and incorporate into your own programs. 

I’ve been on a real skinny jump exercise kick lately. Mostly because I’m always running late to set up jumps, and kicking a few plastic barrels and maybe some PVC poles out into the ring is easier than dragging out a bunch of clunky standards and heavy rails. As you know from previous editions of “What’s in Your Arena?” that I have authored because I didn’t get it together in time to enlist someone more qualified, I am the world’s laziest course builder. (See also “Wylie’s Short-on-Time Shamrock” and “Another Great Exercise for Eventers Who Have Nothing Left to Give.”)

Did I mention that barrels are cheap AND easy? Go splurge on a few via Craigslist.

The hard part, of course, is actually jumping them — but you won’t find a better test of accuracy, straightness and honesty. Princess the Wonderpony and I have built up to a triple combination of single barrels with V guide rails:

Photo by Leslie Wylie.

Next step is to take away the guide rails. The end game is for our skinny skillz to be so on point, I can just throw some random objects in the ring — a barstool, a step ladder, a mini-fridge, whatever junk happens to be lying around — and call it a course, Cadre Noir style:


But even those fancy French horses had to start somewhere. You can tone the triple barrel exercise down for greener horses by laying the barrels on their sides, a la a setup like this:

Photo by Leslie Wylie.

Remember to progress gradually so your horse understands the question. Here come Hadley and Amy, showing us how it’s done. The paint is a Bashkir Curly — how cool is that?

For more help building up your own skinny skillz, check out this Eventing video by Dom and Jimmie Schramm:

DO try this at home, EN! Go Eventing.

Do you have an exercise to share or is there an eventer you would like to nominate for the “What’s in Your Arena?” series? Email [email protected]

Competition Underway at Hagyard MidSouth Three-Day Event & Team Challenge

Alex Green and Fernhill Famous. Photo courtesy of USEF/ Xpress Foto.

It’s a crisp, blue-skied autumn day at the 2017 Hagyard MidSouth Three-Day Event & Team Challenge, where competitors have gathered to contest the USEF CCI1* and CCI1*-JR/YR Eventing National Championships at the Kentucky Horse Park. In addition, the event features classic format Prelim and Training as well as Beginner Novice through Prelim horse trials divisions and a team competition, too.

All CCI1*,CCI1*-JR/YR, P3D and T3D horses presented at yesterday’s first horse inspection passed the jog. We’re glad to see a supportive showing in the P3D and T3D divisions, which have 12 and 29 entries respectively.

Ashlyn Hayworth and Borasco. Photo courtesy of USEF/ Xpress Foto.

Dressage began this morning for the 36-horse CCI1* division. Andrew Walker and Aces Baby, an 8-year-old Irish Sport Horse owned by Jonathan Brandt, hold the lead at the lunch break on a score of 45.3. There is currently a two-way tie for second between Beth Perkins with her own Handsome Harry and Andrew Walker with Alston Kerr’s Sbt Barolo. There are another CCI1* 17 horses still to compete this afternoon, with CCI1*-JR/YR dressage set to begin at 1 p.m. — keep an eye on live scores here.

Best of luck to all competitors as we look ahead to an exciting weekend!


Hagyard MidSouth Three-Day Event & Team Challenge: Website, Schedule, EntriesRide Times, Live Scores

Surprise Pau Late Entry! Michael Jung & Sam to Seek Missing 4* Title

They’ve won Badminton, Burghley, Kentucky and Luhmühlen, but there are a couple four-star wins still on the bucket list: Adelaide, which being in Australia is sort of a hassle to get to, and Pau, the French four-star that is fast approaching on Oct. 25-29.

Well, guess who just showed up late to the Pau entry list party!

!!! FLASH INFO !!!
Michael Jung vient de s’engager sur Les 4 Etoiles de Pau :o
Il sera accompagné de l’illustre La…

Posted by Les 4 Etoiles de Pau on Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Gotta defend that #1 world title! Go get ’em.

We’ve got three U.S. combinations set to tackle Pau 2017: Boyd Martin will return with Lucy Boynton Lie’s Crackerjack, Buck Davidson is competing Carl and Cassie Segal and Sherrie Martin’s Copper Beach, and Allie Knowles will make her overseas debut with Sound Prospect LLC’s Sound Prospect. We also will be following along with American-based Kiwi Joe Meyer, who is riding Theresa and Madison Foote’s Clip Clop.

Much more to come!

[Les Etoiles de Pau CCI4*]

Lauren Billys Collecting Supplies for Puerto Rico’s Horses

Photo courtesy of Lauren Billys.

In the wake of the devastation brought upon Puerto Rico by Hurricanes Irma and Maria, Lauren Billys has started a fundraiser to aid the hundreds of horses on the island who are in dire need of assistance.

Lauren, who has represented Puerto Rico in the Olympic and Pan Am Games, explains, “When Puerto Rico was hit with back-to- back hurricanes, the island’s power, water and necessities to live have become nonexistent. As the island works through this time, there are so many places in need.

“I am Puerto Rican and have been competing under this flag for seven years. Most immediately, our friends in Puerto Rico have reached out to receive basic needs for horses that are also struggling through this time.”

Lauren has started a registry of basic horse care items that can be purchased for Lauren to ship to Puerto Rico. Alternatively, cash donations to offset the cost of shipment are welcome. Donors are instructed to purchase items off of the registry and have them shipped directly to Lauren.

Click here to view the registry.

A post-hurricane photo of a stable belonging to Lauren’s friend and fellow Puerto Rican team member for the show jumping team, Israel Lopez, and his wife Roxana Royo. Lauren notes that their roughly 60 horses need supplies to help them combat the effects of standing water and the desolation of their barn. Photo courtesy of Lauren Billys.

We applaud Lauren’s effort and urge the eventing community to help, whether through the registry or a fundraising effort such as the USEF Equine Disaster Relief Fund.

Through a joint fundraising effort with Equestrian Canada, the Pan American Equestrian Confederation, and the Cayman Islands Equestrian Federation, U.S. Equestrian has helped contribute to over $100,000 in aid to horses in Puerto Rico and other Caribbean islands. Tens of thousands of pounds of hay and feed have been sent via shipping containers to the affected islands, helping to address immediate nutritional needs, as well as veterinary supplies.

Click here to make a donation to the USEF Equine Disaster Fund.

Eventers Take Top Honors on Hunt Night at Pennsylvania National Horse Show

Boyd Martin and Right On Que, winners of the Gentlemen’s Hunter Under Saddle class. Photo by Al Cook (www.alcookphoto.com).

The versatility of eventers was on display yesterday during the Pennsylvania National Horse Show‘s Hunt Night, when a handful of our own showed up and helped Mr. Stewart’s Cheshire Foxhounds to the championship.

Boyd Martin, who moonlights with the Cheshire in the off-season, won the Gentlemen’s Hunter Under Saddle class. Fresh off a 3rd place finish in the Fair Hill International CCI3*, Boyd drove up to Coatesville, Pa., the following day to compete upon the suggestion of one of a fellow hunt member.

“In November and December I pretend to be a foxhunter with the Cheshire and somehow I got roped into competing in the Hack,” Boyd says. “I had no idea what it involved, but it was brilliant! I’ve never been to anything like this before. I got lent a horse and had a bit of training in the collecting ring and went in there and had a crack at the class. It was great fun.”

Boyd Martin Wins the Gentlemen’s Hunter Under Saddle

It was a nice and fun surprise to see Boyd Martin representing Mr. Stewart’s Cheshire Foxhounds in the Gentlemen’s Hunter Under Saddle class last night at the Pennsylvania National Horse Show!

Posted by EQSportsNet on Tuesday, October 17, 2017

His catch ride was Right On Que, owned by Cheshire member Tanya Emslie of Unionville. The horse also won the Ladies’ Hunter Under Saddle title with Emslie in the saddle.

“It’s very exciting. I am so proud of my horse,” Tanya says. “It’s a great honor because there are so many beautiful horses and great riders. It’s so amazing to win and to have an Olympian ride your horse is pretty phenomenal. I am overwhelmed.”

Mr. Stewart’s Cheshire Foxhounds Team Two, winner of the Hunt Team competition, included eventer Erika Nesler. Photo by Al Cook (www.alcookphoto.com).

The highlight of Hunt Night is the Hunt Team competition. The three riders in each team ride over a series of fences, one behind the next, mimicking a hunt. The grand final is the final obstacle, which is jumped in unison.

Twenty teams from 13 Hunt Clubs contested the class, with Mr. Stewart’s Cheshire Foxhounds Team Two coming out on top. The team: Joy Slater, Skylar McKenna and … three-star eventer Erika Nesler!

Erika also placed 5th out of 34 riders in the 35 & Under jumping class, riding her Intermediate mare No Doubt DSF. She called it a “crazy fun night.”

Erika Nesler and No Doubt DSF. Photo courtesy of Erika Nesler.

Other eventers representing the Cheshire: Cindy Buchanan, winner of the Prelim Amateur division at the 2017 AECs. She and The Lone Spy placed 3rd in the 36 & Over Field Hunter. Daughters Maggie and Audrey, who also event, placed 3rd and 4th in the 35 & Under class, and the three Buchanans finished 8th in the Hunt Team competition.

Well done, ladies! Photo courtesy of Erika Nesler.

Go Eventing!



Let’s Discuss: An Open Letter to My Non-Pregnant Horse Friend

Each week in “Let’s Discuss” we open a different topic up for discussion. Have a discussion starter? Email it to [email protected]

Embed from Getty Images

This week’s prompt arrived in the form of an open letter from an EN reader, who wishes to remain anonymous. She’s pregnant, and feeling alienated from her eventing buddies: “I feel like in the horse world, pregnancy is looked at as the end of the world sometimes. My ‘friends’ have definitely treated it that way.”

An open letter to my non-pregnant horse friend:

Dear Horse Friend,

I saw your weekend was full of triumphs and ribbons! That’s amazing! I tried to call you when I thought you might be on your way (since it’s a long drive and I know you have Bluetooth), but to no avail. I was surprised because this used to be a time when we caught up, but that’s OK, I know you’re busy.

Instead I stalked your weekend on EventEntries. I didn’t think you’d mind. You used to call me sometimes if you had a good round, or a bad one, and I’d like to think that I was a good listener but I didn’t expect a call. It’s funny, I didn’t expect one last weekend either.

Here’s the thing, Horse Friend: The minute I told you I was pregnant it was like a switch went off and all of a sudden you could not talk to me about anything. We all of a sudden couldn’t talk about life, not even the horses. Sure I’m not riding right now, but I still support your dream. I’m still the same human except right now I’m petting my beloved unicorn instead of competing in fall events.

So here it is. I’ve tried to text you about your horse. I’ve tried to call you to see how you’re doing. I never mention that you don’t even attempt to reach out or to ask how I’m doing or how I’m feeling. You’ve never asked how I’m handling not riding (for your information it’s killing me softly). I never needed your sympathy; I needed you to remember that I’m not broken. I’m just pregnant. In a few months, I won’t be. I’ll have a baby and I’ll have two horses and through some sort of controlled chaos I’ll hopefully find time to get back in the saddle and back competing in my subterranean division.

The difference, however, won’t only be that I’ll juggle all that with a kid on my hip like SO MANY OTHERS already do, but you will not be a part of it in any way shape or form. I’ll hopefully have found a different network of *gulp* horse MOM friends who are also somehow managing to do what I’m doing. And so help me if six months, a year, two years, 10 years down the road you call me with THAT phone call telling me YOUR wonderful news. I will wholeheartedly congratulate you, but also tell you goodbye and if you catch me on a bad day, probably give you a little piece of my mind as well.

Goodbye, horse friend. I’m sorry I seem broken or for some reason unapproachable or unrelatable to you. It’s just a baby.


Your (pregnant) Horse Friend

Notes about the author: I event Beginner Novice because I’m a chicken and because I didn’t start riding horses until I was in college (so I skipped the fearless leader stage). I have an OTTB and an AQHA both geldings. I’m lucky enough to have my horses living in my backyard in Maryland. BadEventer is my spirit animal and I like and share her posts so much she probably thinks  I’m a low-level stalker. I love Horseware Ireland stuff and have mostly hand-me-down everythings. I’m never going to the Olympics. 

The author insists that she has “every intention of getting right back in the saddle as soon as possible, dark circles under my eyes and all,” and says, “It’s not the end of the world for me” — but the hurt feelings remain.

EN readers: Can any of you out there relate, offer words of advice or share a different perspective? Let’s discuss. 

2018 Tryon WEG Tickets on Sale Now + Need-to-Know Guide for Eventing Fans

Photo by Leslie Wylie.

Tickets are officially on sale for the 2018 World Equestrian Games, to be held Sept. 11 through Sept. 23 at Tryon International Equestrian Center in Mill Spring, N.C. For full ticketing information, visit the website here; for our intents and purposes, we’re going to focus on the eventing end of things.

It sounds like we have a few options, or at least a couple now and another couple to come later. If you have interest in watching other disciplines in addition to eventing, you could spring for an All Sessions Full Games Pass ($1,380), which gets you into all disciplines throughout the duration of WEG, or an All Games Pass – Week 1 ($750), which is good for the first week of competition from Tuesday, Sept. 11 through Sunday, Sept. 16. Eventing runs Thursday, Sept. 13 through Sunday, Sept. 16; reining and dressage also take place during week 1.

All Session Day Passes are sold out with the possibility of a re-release in November, when Individual Discipline Session tickets will also go on sale subject to availability.

The only eventing-specific ticket option currently available is the All Session Eventing Pass ($225), which grants access to all sessions of WEG eventing competition. Note that an 8.5% processing fee will be added to all ticket prices upon checkout.

Thursday, September 13: Eventing Dressage Day 1 – Team & Individual Competition
9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
$35.00 USD

Friday, September 14: Eventing Dressage Day 2 – Team & Individual Competition
9:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
$35.00 USD

Saturday, September 15: Eventing Cross-Country – Team & Individual Competition
11:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
$50.00 USD

Sunday, September 16: Eventing Show Jumping – Team & Individual Medals
2:45 p.m. – 5:15 p.m.
Tier A – $125.00 USD
Tier B – $100.00 USD

Individual Eventing session tickets are valued at a total of $245 while the All Session Eventing Pass offers a discount of 8% for $225. WEG explains that “due to the high demand for ticket packages, those ticketing types are being offered first to ensure that those who want to purchase ticket packages can receive the same seats for all events. Seats will be assigned on a first come, first served basis according to the date and timestamp of the ticket purchase. The earlier your purchase, the better your seats.”

In addition to session tickets, a few other ticket options will be rolled out at a later date. Opening and Closing Ceremonies tickets will be sold separately in early December after details are released. Day Passes will go on sale three months beforehand that allow access to the venue to experience the trade fair, event expo, and equestrian demonstrations. VIP tickets and hospitality packages will also be released in early November and customers can trade up their purchased tickets toward these higher value ticketing/hospitality options.

It sounds like they’re expecting a sold-out event, so if you want guaranteed tickets, it’s probably a good idea to act sooner rather than later. Says Mark Bellissimo, CEO of TIEC: “Demand from the event is way beyond our expectations and it would not surprise me if this event were to sell out early. We have experienced unprecedented demand, far bigger than we ever anticipated. There is tremendous appetite for this event, so we encourage people to buy now.”

Check out WEG Ticketing FAQ here.

[Tickets Now on Sale for FEI World Equestrian Games Tryon 2018 in Mill Spring, North Carolina, USA on September 11-23, 2018]

‘An Unassailable Lead’: An Excerpt from ‘Horses Came First, Second, and Last’ by Jack Le Goff

EN is honored to share with our readers an excerpt from the hot-off-the-presses Jack Le Goff autobiography, “Horses Came First, Second, and Last” by Jack Le Goff, reprinted with permission from Trafalgar Square Books.

The late Frenchman is, of course, is a legend of our sport, an Olympic medalist and successful U.S. three-day eventing team coach whose legacy still reverberates today. His leadership of the team from 1970 to 1984, during which they achieved multiple international championships, winning 18 medals including several in the Olympics, is heralded as a golden era for American eventing. After retiring as coach, he acted as a consultant to the USET for new rider development, director of the USET Training Center and coached the Canadian national team. He was also an FEI judge, committee member and Olympic appeals judge. 

Read on for more information about the book, including a special offer for EN readers! 

Jack Le Goff riding Laurier to third place at Burghley in 1963. Photo courtesy of Jack
Le Goff.

In 1980, world politics once again impacted the scheduled Olympic Games in Moscow when the Russians invaded Afghanistan. In protest, many countries boycotted the Moscow Games, which made that competition less of an Olympic Games and more of a competition between Eastern Block countries. In the 1970s and 1980s, world politics had an immense and often devastating and tragic effect on the Olympic Games which, given the whole philosophy of the Olympic movement, is a sad indictment of human nature.

The FEI decided that all those nations who boycotted the Olympic Three-Day Event could compete in an international CCIO (Concours Complet International Officiel ) at Fontainebleau in France. The major eventing nations all went to Fontainebleau including Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Britain, Canada, France, Germany, Holland, Ireland, and Italy. The home team of Joel Pons (Ensorceleuse), Jean-Yves Touzaint (Flipper), Thierry Touzaint (Gribouille), and Armand Bigot (Gamin du Bois) won the team gold medal with Denmark’s Nils Haagensen taking the individual gold medal on the Thoroughbred-Hanoverian cross, Monaco.

French organizers rose to the occasion and in just three months put on a superb event at Fontainebleau, a beautiful chateau that had been the residence of several kings and the Emperor Napoleon. This competition came to be called eventing’s “Alternative Olympics.” The United States sent a team of four and two individuals. The team was made up of Jim Wofford on Carawich, Torrance Watkins and Poltroon, Mike Plumb and Laurenson, and Mike Huber and Gold Chip. The two individuals were Karen Stives and The Saint, and Wash Bishop and Taxi.

The team was lying in second place after dressage, and I knew we had a chance of improving on that after walking the cross-country. The course was very demanding being very winding with lots of turns. Every fence required a big, bold effort or technical accuracy. The severity of the cross-country was evidenced by the number of falls; in fact, there were falls at 30 of the 34 fences on the course with the water responsible for six of that number.

Jack Le Goff with his first United States Team. L–R: Bruce Davidson and Plain Sailing;
Jim Wofford and Kilkenny; Kevin Freeman and Good Mixture; Jim Powers (reserve)
and Foster; Mike Plumb and Free and Easy. Photo by Fifi Coles.

The first US rider out was Wash Bishop on Taxi. Competing as an individual, Wash had to report back on how the course was riding. Unfortunately, Taxi had two falls that resulted in his elimination. The next day we found that Taxi had developed a fever and a virus, which accounted for him being unable to perform to his usual standard. Ill fortune was to befall the team also.

As the cross-country progressed, we moved up with every horse until we were in the lead by 90 points! An unassailable lead I hear you say. After our third horse, Gold Chip, came home I was worried. Gold Chip’s knee looked bad as she had sustained a deep cut. I asked Marty Simensen to go back to the stable and check her out and give me his opinion as to what her chances were of show jumping the next day. Marty came back with the news that although Gold Chip would be fine in a few days, there was no chance of her being fit to show jump. So, it was down to Mike Plumb and Laurenson to secure the team gold medal for the United States.

Mike’s instructions were to go for a safe clear round and do everything he could to ensure that we had a team to show jump the next day. That is a lot of pressure! Now Mike is one of the greatest riders of all time, a superb team member, and I think of him as a dear friend, but on this occasion, he had what I would call today a “brain fart.” All riders in this position clearly understand that in the event of a refusal at a fence with an alternative route they are to immediately take the longer and easier option to minimize the risk of any further penalties. At this point in the competition, with the United States in such a dominant position, Mike could have taken every long route on the course, had he wanted to. He had a fantastic round and was foot perfect coming into the second-to-last fence, a significant water complex. If Laurenson had a weakness, it was water jumps, and his successful competition record was due to the rider on his back. I was standing near the water jump, feeling quite confident that we would finish the day well in the lead when Laurenson came into the first element and refused. Oh well, we had the 20 penalties well in hand, Mike would take the option, and we would be okay, thought I. But no, Mike approached the fence again at the same place, and again Laurenson refused. Now he would take the option; our lead was greatly diminished but we could still do it.

In utter amazement and disbelief, I watched Mike turn again, approach the fence in exactly the same spot as the previous two times, and get eliminated for a third refusal. The team’s chances of a medal were gone, and it was left to Jim Wofford and Torrance Watkins to win the silver and bronze medals for the United States as individuals.

Jack Le Goff walking the course with the 1976 Olympic Team. L–R: Mary Anne
Tauskey; Bruce Davidson; Mike Plumb (always thinking); and Tad Coffin striding the
distance. Photo by Barry Kaplan/TFI Photo.

For two days I couldn’t even look at Mike, let alone speak to him. On the third day, he came to me and asked, “When are you going to let me have it, Coach?” To ask what he had been thinking would have been stupid and futile. It was apparent that his thinking capacity had eluded him that day, and no thought process had occurred whatsoever. There was also a factor of a romance going on that could explain this complete brain fart on Mike’s part. (As an example, Mike Huber had taken an option with the injured Gold Chip on cross-country and managed to complete the course!)

But I was wrong. “I’m sorry Jack, I honestly thought I could get him over it,” was Mike’s reply.

Perhaps he could have done so if the rules allowed for that many attempts!

The annual Luhmuhlen CCI in Germany was the weekend after Fontainebleau and some of the US alternative horses were to compete there. Mike had Better and Better entered but after the fiasco at Fontainebleau, he felt so bad about himself that he just wanted to go home to the States. Better and Better was ready to run, and I was not going to let Mike back out. I finally was able to convince him to compete and hoped things were going to go well. I do not know what was going on in Mike’s head at this particular time, but he made another big mistake by violating one of the rules on saddler in the warm-up area before the competition. Fortunately, one of our riders saw him and tried to convince him that was not allowed. When Mike refused to change, the rider ran to tell me, and I ran to the warm-up area. I was terribly, terribly mad at him, as mad as I have ever been. I told him, “When stupidity fell upon the earth, you certainly did not have an umbrella!” His explanation to me was that he could not find the rule change in the rule book. This was because the rule had just recently been changed (and was why we had talked about it the night before!)

Still, life goes on, and guess what? Mike and Better and Better won the Luhmuhlen CCI. Oh my!

About the Book

Enjoy this excerpt? Trafalgar Square is pleased to offer Eventing Nation readers the opportunity to order a copy before it is released anywhere else — click here to order yours today!

Courtesy of Trafalgar Square Books.


Fair Hill in Photos: Future Eventing Superstars of America

Youngsters of both the horse and human variety are out in force at Fair Hill International. Of course, there’s the Young Event Horse East Coast Championships, which has just wrapped up — view results here. Check back soon for a full report on that competition!

Four-star effort into the baby water jump!


And then there are the babies of the two-legged variety, well-bred and genetically destined to event. This seven-star event baby is growing up so fast!

Aubrey Davidson knew exactly where her dad was at this afternoon’s first horse inspection at #DuttaFHI

A post shared by Eventing Nation (@goeventing) on

How about the littlest member of Team Bourke, another one with multiple stars in his bloodlines:


Could Marley and Tim Bourke’s son Senan be any cuter? #DuttaFHI

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Happy fifth birthday to this Fair Hill baby!


You’re never too young to join the Fair Hill family:


Just to confirm. Eventers are crazy. Agreed? Good. #DuttaFHI

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There’s lots to going on at the event to keep the kids entertained.

Come play with us at the Welcome to Cecil tent #ccgov

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Bring the kids to the Welcome to Cecil tent for some fun #ccgov

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And last but never least, can’t forget about this furry baby:

Keep it here for all the latest from Fair Hill International 2017!

Fair Hill: WebsiteDrawn OrderScheduleCCI Dressage TimesYEH Jumping TimesCCI Live ScoresYEH Live ScoresEN’s CoverageEN’s TwitterEN’s Instagram

Thursday Video from SpectraVET: Alice Naber-Lozeman Boekelo Helmet Cam with SAP Analysis

Dutch eventer Alice Naber-Lozeman enjoyed a super Boekelo result with ACSI Peter Parker, finishing 6th overall on a score of 50.2. They leapt up the scoreboard from 30th after dressage into the top 10 thanks to a foot-perfect cross country round that collected just 0.8 time penalties, the second fastest ride of the day.

The 15-year-old Irish Sport Horse gelding, Alice’s partner for the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio, looks quite pleased with himself jumping around the track. Alice works closely with SAP to obtain data on her rides, via a revolutionary data collection program that tracks information such as heart rate, speed, and location using a course map and GPS.

SAP has been working within our sport to help enhance our experience both as fans and as riders, and the company offers analysis products for other sports too. It’s really interesting stuff — you can see much more on their website or YouTube page.

Boekelo: WebsiteFinal ScoresEN’s CoverageEN’s TwitterEN’s Instagram

Why SpectraVET?

Reliable. Effective. Affordable.

SpectraVET is committed to providing only the highest-quality products and services to our customers, and to educating the world in the science and art of laser therapy.

We design and manufacture the broadest range of clinically-proven veterinary therapeutic laser products, which are represented and supported worldwide by our network of specialist distributors and authorized service centers.

Weekend Instagram Roundup: These Are the Moments

The best moments at events don’t always involve finish lines and awards ceremonies. Sometimes they can be quiet moments back at the barn, silly moments with friends, a perfect jump, a stunning sunset. Thinking back on the dozens of events I’ve contested in my life, it’s rare that I even remember what colored ribbon I went home with. What lasts are the memories, like these:

Heritage Park H.T.

Mother daughter ❤️ #1 fan for life!! @bowmansporthorse

A post shared by Cheyenne (@butterfly_chompers) on


A post shared by Cheyenne (@butterfly_chompers) on

Course Brook Farm H.T.

So proud of these kids at course brook farm!

A post shared by Caroline Teich (@teicheventing) on


WindRidge Farm Fall H.T.

Girls will be girls

A post shared by Avery Carlton (@averycarlton) on

Maryland at Loch Moy H.T.


Middle Tennessee Pony Club H.T.



Woodside International CIC & H.T.


The Event at Skyline H.T.

Kent School Fall H.T.



Willow Draw Charity H.T.


Radnor Hunt H.T.


Go Eventing!

What’s in Your Arena? Presented by Attwood: Morven Park International Equestrian Center

Nick Attwood, President of Attwood Equestrian Surfaces, stands on the base of one of three new arenas at the Morven Park International Equestrian Center. Photo courtesy of Attwood Equestrian Surfaces.

Exciting stuff is afoot, literally, at Morven Park International Equestrian Center in Leesburg, Virginia! Nick Attwood, President of Attwood Equestrian Surfaces, is personally overseeing a revitalization project that features three new arenas.

“It’s so rewarding to be here now, having been involved from the actual planning stages, to see the arenas beginning to take shape,” he says. “We will be hands on until the first horses come … to compete, and will continue to maintain these arenas for years to come. Partnering with Morven Park means a great deal to us.”

With the arena base established, the next major steps in the project are to put in the drainage system and then the footing.

Below is a visual representation of the progress we've made on the Morven Park International Equestrian Center…

Posted by Morven Park on Tuesday, October 3, 2017

One of the new Morven Park International Equestrian Center arenas is closer to being ready for competition! More fencing has been installed.

Posted by Morven Park on Saturday, October 7, 2017

Morven Park’s spring event takes place March 31 – April 1, 2018 — check out the USEA Calendar listing here. Many thanks for Morven Park for making first-class footing a priority, and to Attwood Equestrian Surfaces for stepping up to the plate to serve one of eventing’s most beloved venues. We look forward to seeing some hoofprints in that footing soon!

No Bridle, No Problem for Elisa Wallace in Thoroughbred Makeover Freestyle Division

Elisa Wallace knows a thing or two about bringing the Thoroughbred Makeover Freestyle heat! She tied for 1st this year with Sir Teddy (Cashel Castle – Round Heels (IRE), by Daggers Drawn), a 2012 Illinois-bred OTTB whom you may have spotted out eventing at the Novice level of late under the name Fly With Me. The handsome grey, owned by Mike, Maddie and Michele Chisholm, also finished the eventing competition in 12th out of 97 competitors .

“Lear” looked cool as a cucumber when he entered the indoor (sans bridle!) to perform his Freestyle, with each move one-upping the next: side pass over a barrel …

… which then became a jump …

… and then she tooled around backwards for a bit …

… before flying with him over this jump …

… and a little more cantering backwards just to be sure …

… and finally, a well-deserved round of applause!

Watch their ride in its entirety:

What a performance — well played, you two. They returned for today’s finale which should be wrapping up at any moment, which means they’ll shortly be putting the finalists to an audience favorite vote! Keep an eye on the Retired Racehorse Project Facebook page for details. Go OTTBs. Go Eventing!

I’m so blessed to have had such an amazing team with me this weekend! #rrp #retiredracehorseproject2017

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Thoroughbred Makeover: WebsiteEntriesScheduleRide TimesLive StreamLive Scores