Leah Lang-Gluscic, who is based in Freeport, Ill., made her first trek to Roebke’s Run in Minnesota this July, fell in love with the venue and is a now a vocal supporter of the Schweiss family’s efforts to host an Advanced division in an area with underpopulated upper levels. Fortunately, Area IV has approved an Advanced class for the 2015 Roebke’s Run Horse Trials, which will hopefully bring a new vital spark to Midwest eventing.
Leah’s reasons for loving Roebke’s Run include the gorgeous facilities and show grounds, with a “big, confidence-building yet challenging” cross-country course. “It is a bit of a hike for me,” Leah admits, “but it was totally worth it … Between the super people, the great cross-country course and footing with championship-level course designed by Capt. Mark Phillips, to the prize money and educational opportunities, it’s just a fabulous opportunity for anyone.”
The recent additions of Intermediate, CIC* and CIC2* divisions opened the doors for upper-level riders to compete in Minnesota, and Leah hopes that next year’s Advanced class will bring in more action. “(The Schweiss family) is completely dedicated to making that happen,” she says. “They’re doing everything right; we just have to spread the word, and Julie Schweiss says that she will keep holding (the Advanced classes at Roebke’s Run) until people come. It’ll just take time.”
Capt. Mark Phillips’ cross-country courses are known for being very technical, and Leah says that the addition of Advanced at Roebke’s Run will give upper-level riders of all ages a chance to ride one of his courses closer to home. “If people are smart, they will ride a Phillips’ course before heading to Burghley.”
When asked what his courses offer that are unique from others she’s ridden, Leah doesn’t hesitate to name some of the standout features of this year’s course — namely, the pirate ships, treasure chests and sea serpent in the water complex, not to mention the trademark challenges of Capt. Phillips’ questions. “The horse and rider have to be on every second of the ride,” Leah adds. “There’s not a lot of room for error.”
Leah intends to bring AP Prime, her upper-level partner, to Roebke’s Run to prepare them for Burghley in the future. Watch out for this team — they were one of only 10 pairs to run a double-clear cross country in the CCI2* at Fair Hill last year and have their eyes set on this year’s CIC3* at Morven Park and CCI3* at Fair Hill once again. EN wishes Leah and AP the best of luck, from Roebke’s Run to Burghley and beyond!
Go Leah. Go Roebke’s Run. Go Eventing.