3, 2, 1 … Go Eventing in 2018! Top Riders Share Their Resolutions

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With the year turning over from 2017 to 2018 many of us are thinking “OK, what’s next?” In fact, in some of the Nation, dreaming about show season is all that’s keeping us warm on these frigid winter days and nights.

If you find yourself having to imagine a gallop out of the start-box in order to get motivated, maybe some inspiration from your favorite riders would help? The top riders in the sport use the down time to reflect on horse shows past, and mentally prep for horse shows future. We asked some of our Athletux riders to let us in on their resolutions for 2018.

Earl and Jen McFall, along with their daughter Taylor of Dragonfire Farm in Wilton, CA, have had a LOT of exciting moments in 2017 to reflect on, and they have big goals for 2018. Earl’s New Year’s Resolution for 2018 is to be more like Michael Jung. He says he almost has the hairstyle down …

Photo courtesy of Dragonfire Farm.

No comment on the hair, but surely all of us could resolve to be a more Michael Jung-like in 2018. As for Jen, she’s going for something ambitious, but still attainable: “I’d really like to be one of the top three McFall riders in the world.”

I’d say she’s safe with that one.

Fellow Californian Hawley Bennet-Awad in Ramona, CA has a resolution that my organized horsey friends will appreciate: “This year I’m going to enter every event the day entries open.”

Hawley Bennett-Awad and Jollybo. Photo by Leslie Wylie.

With mounts like Jollybo and Sasha Fierce I’d be eager to enter too!

Auburn Excell-Brady of Excell Equestrian in San Juan Capistrano, CA is ready to see what 2018 has in store and she’s learned to appreciate the journey as much as the destination.

“For 2018 I really want to resolve to carry forward the attitude I’ve had in 2017,” she says. “I’m more relaxed at this point in my career than ever before, and it’s been great to watch the horses respond to that. I want to stay focused on taking my time and letting the horses enjoy the process.”

Photo courtesy of Excell Equestrian.

Matt Brown of East West Eventing in Chadds Ford, PA, also is resolving to be better overall in 2018: “For next year, I want to work every day to become better than I was last year without excuses. I also want to be there for my friends and family in 2018.”

For riders, resolutions like Auburn’s and Matt’s are always applicable. Working hard and taking the time to enjoy that hard work can make the difference between a successful year and one that leaves us feeling burnt out and defeated.

Matthew Brown and Super Socks BCF. Photo by Leslie Threlkeld.

For Olivia Loiacono in Bonsall, CA, December 31st isn’t the only day of the year to focus on personal improvement: “I’m not huge on resolutions. I try my very best to improve every day. Whether that be my riding, my business, or just simply being a good human.”

Olivia Loiacono and Subway at Rolex in 2011. Photo by Leslie Threlkeld.

And with that, we’ll let you consider what you’ll resolve to improve in 2018. Rather it be a specific goal, like getting entries in as early as possible, or an overarching resolution to simply be better, like Matt or Olivia. Whatever your resolution is, may thinking about it keep you warm as we enter a New Year!