The smile on Lily Geelan’s face told it all as she and her trusted mount, Luksor, were presented the blue ribbon for capturing first place in the Open Preliminary division at Roebke’s Run Horse Trials on July 11-12 in Hector, Minnesota. It was the first blue ribbon of her riding career.
Lily Geelan is the 15-year-old daughter of John and Mary Beth Geelan of Independence, Minnesota, a city well known for an abundance of eventers that make annual trips to participate at the Roebke’s Run Horse Trials.
“I was really happy with my rides. This was only my second Open Prelim since I moved up at Fox River Valley,” Lily said. “My dressage was good. I’m still working on getting Luksor into the connection that’s needed more because I only got him at the end of April. Cross country rode real well. We came in with a real nice time. I think I only had 10 seconds left until the optimum.
Lily’s horse is a Polish Warmblood, born in Poland, transported to Germany where he did jumpers and then brought to the United States where he started eventing. Sue Martin owned him, and he was trained by Robin Walker. Both Lily and Luksor like cross country best, but Geelan said he is strong in all phases of eventing.
“I really do like dressage, but I’m still working on that connection with my new horse and really working him into that contact and getting him heavy; he’s really light. Everything I’ve been doing with him is working well. All of our rails in stadium jumping have been because of rider error.
Geelan competed at Roebke’s Run’s June horse trials and was here last year as well. Prior to this, she competed at Fox River Valley and Otter Creek coming out with second, third and seventh place finishes. She likes this Minnesota course for a number of reasons other than its beauty and well-run operation.
“I love the course,” Lily said. “It’s a nice facility that helps riders get used to the bigger jumps and harder questions preparing them for Young Riders. It’s really good what the Schweisses do here.”
Her first riding experience came at age 6. From there, she moved up to jumpers and hunters and then some dressage shows under the tutorship of Liz Lund as her personal trainer. Her plan is to do a one-star this fall and move up to Young Riders next year.