David Taylor
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David Taylor


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About David Taylor

I am the facility manager at Sunset Hill at McCuan Farms in Woodbine MD. I consider myself an up and coming adult amateur with the goals of a teenager that has sights set on Rolex. At the ripe age of 30, what better time then now to dive head first in the world of eventing and all it has to offer.

Eventing Background

USEA Rider Profile Click to view profile
Area 2
Highest Level Competed Training
Farm Name Sunset Hill at McCuan Farms
Trainer Kristin Bachman (Jump), Britta Johnston (Dressage), Domenique Carson (Dressage),

Latest Articles Written

Tuesday News and Notes from Cavalor

Beth Sokohl on Buckharo and Kate Chadderton on Collection Pass out for an afternoon hack. Beth Sokohl on Buckharo and Kate Chadderton on Collection Pass out for an afternoon hack.

Just about two years ago, Beth Sokohl (owner of Buckahro) had a serious fall on course at a local horse trials that has kept her from getting back in the saddle. Over the past few weeks, Beth has made the decision to give it another go. With close guidance from Kate Chadderton, Beth has joined Kate for weekly hacks, taking her very own Bucky out for jaunts around Sunset Hill at McCuan Farms.

The smiles and laughter coming from these two can be seen and heard all over the farm that bring even more beauty to this amazing place. It is great to see an owner that has supported a rider be able to enjoy her horse once again. Beth will be taking it easy and staying away from the show grounds, never the less kudos to her for getting back up on her horse. Cheers to you Beth.

Events Opening Today:  Pine Top Thanksgiving H.T. (GA, A-3)

Events Closing this Week:  Rocking Horse Fall H.T. (FL, A-3),  Galway Downs International Event & H.T. (CA, A-6),  Pine Hill Fall H.T.(TX, A-5),  The Virginia CCI1*, CIC2* and H.T. (VA, A-2),  Full Gallop Farm Fall H.T. (SC, A-3)

Tuesday News and Notes:

Full Gallop Ahead: It is no secret that many events on the east coast have had to make alternate plans or cancel shows all together because of the horrid rain. Lara Anderson of Full Gallop Farm is encouraging riders to continue to enter without fear of losing their entry. Lara says “We have never had to cancel since we started running back in 2001. We may reorganize, move times around, etc, but we would do everything in our power to run.” So if the eventing gods can’t stop the rain, Full Gallop will find a way. [Lara’s Facebook Page]

Classic 3-Day Becomes Tradition: 12 years and running, Waredaca’s Classic Novice/Training 3-day is fast approaching. This year Irish Olympian Eric Smiley will be the lead clinician assisting competitors through the entire event. If you volunteer at this event you are welcome to join all seminars, course walks, and talks during the 4 days of competition. The classic 3-day will take place October 22-25 and volunteers are greatly needed. [Waredaca Novice/Training 3-Day]

Massive Renovation to NY Fairgrounds Equestrian Facility: The equestrian facilities at NY’s state fairgrounds are anticipating a $9,000,000 upgrade by 2017. Renovating the Toyota Coliseum, adding three new horse rings, and upgrading the existing stalls is the plan for these funds.  The hope is that this update will make the facilities in Syracuse a destination for many equestrian disciplines in the near future. [New York State Fairgrounds to make $9 Million Renovation to Equestrian Facilities]

W.T. Waggoner Estate Ranch For Sale: If you have a spare $725 million, then you could be the next owner of this iconic ranch. Spanning a measly 510,527 acres, the W.T. Waggoner Estate Rance has been owned by the same famly since 1849 and is said to be bigger than New York City and Las Angeles combined. The sheer size of this property is unfathomable that also includes rivers, lakes and a substantial oil operation. If you are interested in making an offer time is running out, so check your couch and cars for loose change, because you will need it. [Iconic Texas Ranch Carries $725 Millon Price Tag]

1st Time Horse Buyers Mistakes: Buying a horse for the first time is a daunting task that needs to be thought about long an hard. Knowing if you are ready to own a horse, where to look, where not to look, and what type of horse is appropriate for you are all things to know before you begin the search. Here are 6 mistakes that you should know about before you start the buying process. [6 Horse Shopping Mistakes]

Tuesday Video Break:

The water complex is normally the place to be to watch horses on cross country. Check out this montage of the intermediate and preliminary divisions at the water complex for Greenwood Farm’s Fall Horse Trials.


Tuesday News and Notes from Cavalor

Nicki Carson riding in the rain at Dressage at Devon. Photo by Dave Taylor Nicki Carson riding in the rain at Dressage at Devon. Photo by Dave Taylor

This past weekend I spent the weekend out in the cold, in the rain, in the wind, to be the best Horse Husband I know how to be. But I wasn’t at an event as my wife, Nicki, is a dressage rider. I was at Dressage at Devon, which is a 100% outdoor show with little to no escape from the elements. After this weekend, I have a whole new respect for our fellow dressage peers and our brothers/sisters in arms. I watched many international and regional dressage riders put on their show attire and head into the bitter cold, wind, and rain to lay down the best dressage test conditions would allow. So to every rider and horse that did not allow the weather to dictate the job at hand this past weekend, you are a true die hard equestrian and I tip my hat to you.

Events Opening Today:  MeadowCreek Park H.T – The Fall Social Event (TX, A-5)

Events Closing This Week:  Waredaca H.T. and Classic 3 Day Event (MD, A-2),  Windermere Run H.T. (MO, A-4),  Hagyard Midsouth Three-day Event & Team Challenge H.T. (KY, A-8),  Holly Hill Fall H.T. (LA, A-5)

Tuesday News and Notes:

Help Wanted at Maryland Horse Trials. The Maryland Horse Trials is looking for volunteer help this Wednesday through Sunday. Help is needed for many positions each day and MDHT needs you. If you give your time MDHT will supply you with swag, food, and cross country schooling passes. To sign up to help go to www.themarylandhorsetrials.comclick here, or Email Carolyn directly at [email protected]

Who is Fernhill Cubalawn? We all know Phillip Dutton, but how well do you know his mount Fernhill Cubalawn? This awesome horse has the personality of a pony, can be pretty low key, a true people pony, and it has been reported he has a crush on Veronica. There is just something special knowing that the great horses of our sport can be just like our very own horses. [Behind the Stall Door with: Fernhill Cubalawn]

Offical Schedule for Thoroughbred Makeover Announced. In a week and a half, 200 retired racehorses will be flocking to Lexington, Kentucky to show off their new skillz in ten different disciplines. Not only can you see what these horses have accomplished, there is a ton to do and learn while you are there.  Check out EN’s pre-makeover run down here or head over to Retiredracehorseproject.org to get a run down of the whole schedule. [Thoroughbred Makeover Schedule and Entries Announced]

RK3DE is Hiring.  Are you energetic, forward thinking, conscientious, ambitious and results driven? Then The Equestrian Events, Inc Board has the job for you. EEI is looking for such a person to become the next Executive Director for the organization. Applicants should submit the required materials by October 31, 2015. For more info check out rk3de.org

Schleese Saddles Stolen. Schleese is asking for your help in locating several saddles stolen out of a company truck that was parked at a hotel near Niagara Falls. Two men were seen on video surveillance breaking in to and driving away with the Schleese company truck and trailer. The trailer was found on a near by Canadian Indian Reservation stripped, but the truck and 7 saddles are still missing. [Schleese Reports Saddles Stolen from Company Vehicle]

Tuesday Video Break

Here is yet another video to remind us of the deplorable conditions this past weekend on the east coast as Doug Payne pilots Vandiver to a double clear in the CIC3* at Morven Park.

Tuesday News and Notes from Cavalor

Dave Taylor riding Sauvignon Bai. Dave Taylor riding Sauvignon Bai.

Yesterday I was able to be the second person to sit on what is hopefully a future upper-level event horse. Sauvignon Bai (AKA Sallie), is a 3-year-old Oldenburg homebred mare (bred by Victoria Carson of Flying Chesterfield Farm) that I’ve known since she was a sparkle in her sire’s eye.

Knowing a horse since day one, watching them grow, seeing them develop and finally getting to sit on them is simply amazing. It is an electric feeling to get the opportunity to sit on such and amazing horse after only 30 days under saddle. My mental high from the experience, and the thought that this mare may be something truly special, has me smiling from ear to ear hours days later. Watch out Rolex, here we come.

Events Opening Today:  Fresno County Horse Park Horse Trials (CA, A-6),  Ocala Horse Properties Fall Event (FL, A-3),  River Glen Fall H.T. (TN, A-3),  Full Moon Farms H.T. (MD, A-2)

Events Closing this Week:  The Virginia CCI1*, CIC2* and H.T. (VA, A-2),  Galway Downs International Event & H.T. (CA, A-6), Fresno County Horse Park Horse Trials (CA, A-6)

New Team Member at Windurra. Today upper level eventer, Erin Freedman, announced that she has joined Boyd Martin’s team. To make sure she stays busy, Erin will also be riding for Pam Liddell at Kynynmont Farms. Erin relocates from Northern Virginia with her three-star event horse Viola. Good luck to Erin and Viola. [Erin Freedman Moves to Pennsylvania]

Feed Recall in California and Arizona. Western Milling LLC has made a voluntary recall of its Western Blend Horse Feed. 1,100 fifty pound bags are included in this recall, Lot 5251, that may have been contaminated with Monensin. Please be alert and check your feed bags if you feed Western Blend Horse Feed. [Manufacturer Recalls Potentially Contaminated Horse Feed]

Win a Personalized Clinic with Boyd and Silva. Would you like to the chance to win a clinic for you and nine of your friends with the Martin’s? Dressage Today and Practical Horseman are offering you the chance to win just that. Fill out the entry online, include a mini essay on why you deserve this unique opportunity, and you could be the chosen one. [Win a Day With Boyd and Silva Contest]

Keeping That Baby Soft Skin. As equestrians we spend countless hours in the sun. If we want to avoid that leather like skin when we hit social security age, make sure you take care of the skin you were born with. Remember sunscreen, wear UV-protectant clothing, wear a hat, moisturize, and stay on top of changes in your skin. Don’t look 70 when your turn 30, take care of what you have before its too late. [Caring for Your Skin as an Equestrian]

Poppy Seeds are to Blame. The FEI has exonerated Steve Guerdat and Alessandra Bichsel after failed drug test at La Baule. The FEI has said the positive drug tests were caused by poppy seed contaminated feed. No sanctions will apply to either rider other than the automatic disqualification of their horses at La Baule. [Swiss Riders Exonerated]

Tuesday Video:

Ever wonder how Horseware Ireland makes such great rugs? Well it seems that they have a team of specialists helping out and everyone at Horseware is thrilled to have them aboard, even Andrea Quinn.

HorseHubby.com Provides Network for Hardworking Horse Husbands

HorseHubby.com's brain behind the site: Timothy Harfield. Photo from HorseHubby's Facebook page. HorseHubby.com's brain behind the site: Timothy Harfield. Photo from HorseHubby's Facebook page.

Many of you have heard of or know who Elisa Wallace is. An accomplished upper-lever event rider who completed her first four-star at Rolex this spring, she also just returned from a successful trip to Blenheim. Additionally, she has made a name for herself in working with Mustangs. She won the Extreme Mustang Makeover, finished 30th out of 120 entries in the Mustang Million, and was invited to participate in Mustang Magic last year

What you might not know is that the man who supports Elisa is also the man behind HorseHubby.com. Elisa’s husband, Timothy Harfield, is what every horse crazy girl likely wants in a man. He is supportive, cooks, cleans, attends and helps at horse shows, and makes sure Elisa has everything she needs to be successful in her career. He is the marketing director and social media guru for Wallace Eventing and an all around awesome horse husband.

But Timothy did not come from a horsey background. He fought his way though the trenches like most of us horse husbands have had to do — figuring out where to be and how to do something you have no idea how to do. Timothy realized that there was a lack of a place for horse husbands in the trenches just like him to turn to.

I wanted to create a network that was about supporting men who support horsewomen,” Timothy said. “There are articles written about horse husbands by women, but they too often represent men as ignorant, albeit adorable, dopes. I wanted to provide a space for horse husbands to share their experiences from their own unique perspective.

Tim and Elisa at Blenheim palace horse trails. Photo from Timothy Harfield's Facebook page

Timothy and Elisa at Blenheim Palace Horse Trials. Photo from Timothy Harfield’s Facebook page.

Timothy set forth with that goal in mind, and on June 6 posted his first blog on HorseHubby.com, a blog titled “Surviving Your First Horse Show” that set the tone for the future of the network. “Where Horse Hubby differs from the vast majority is it is written from the perspective of the horse husband,” he said.

Timothy has already had a star-studded cast of horse husbands appear on the blog, with interviews and articles from Gamal Awad, Hawley Bennett’s husband; Brian Rutledge, Colleen Rutledge’s husband (who runs her successful Facebook page); Nick Hinze, developer of the CourseWalk app; and Jeremy Newton, co-founder and COO of Giddyup Gear.

The community has grown at such a rapid rate that it leaves Timothy stunned. “Our first post received 2,500 hits in the first 24 hours,” Timothy said. “To top it off, our first interview with Gamal Awad had 4,500 hits in the first day, which is amazing. My goal is that I want each post to provide value to the community.”

As Horse Hubby continues to grow, the next step was for the hubbies to hit the airwaves. Earlier this week, I was interviewed by both co-hosts Timothy and Glenn The Geek for a new Horse Husband episode on the Horse Radio Network. These new episodes will be featured on Horses In The Morning on the fourth Thursday of each month.

The first Horse Husband episode of Horses In The Morning aired live this morning, and you can click here to listen to the podcast. This episode features interviews from myself and fellow horse husband Brian Rutledge, so if you want to hear what it takes to be the best horse husband you can be plus the experiences of other horse husbands, tune in.

Horse hubbys Dave Taylor and Brian Rutledge. Photo by Dave Taylor

Horse hubbies Dave Taylor and Brian Rutledge. Photo by Jenni Autry.

I want HorseHubby.com to be a community hub that promotes positive relationships within the equestrian community, while being a lot of fun at the same time,” Timothy said. “A life with horses is crazy, and there’s so much that I still don’t know. It’s a journey for all of us, and one that I look forward to sharing with horse husbands and horse partners everywhere.

If you have chosen to be a horse husband or know of a fellow horse husband in the trenches, make sure you send them our way. We welcome fellow horse hubbies with open arms and the occasional and sometimes necessary cold beer.

Go HorseHubby.com. Go Eventing.

Tuesday News and Notes from Cavalor

Chinch is working on his own illegal live-stream. We're not associated with him. Photo by Dave Taylor. Chinch is working on his own illegal live-stream. We're not associated with him. Photo by Dave Taylor.

This weekend ended in a haze of eventing madness that has my head spinning. While being at Plantation Field this weekend, our attention was also focused on the American riders over the pond at Blenheim. As I sit here decompressing from all the amazing things that happened, I am reminded of why this sport keeps us coming back for more.

Our eventing heroes all kicked butt at their respective events both near and far: Phillip on Icabad Crane, Doug on Lyslander, Tamie on Mai Baum, and Clark on Loughan Glen. To add the cherry on top of what is a sundae of eventing goodness, I got to witness with my own eyes the first known drone flight of the lovable rodent we fondly know as Chinch.

Events Opening Today:  Texas Rose Horse Park Fall H.T. (TX, A-5),  Poplar Place Farm November H.T. (GA, A-3)

Events Closing This Week: Hagyard Midsouth Three-day Event & Team Challenge H.T. (KY, A-8),  The Maryland H.T. at Loch Moy Farm (MD, A-2),  Paradise Farm H.T. (SC, A-3),  ESDCTA New Jersey H.T. at the Horsepark (NJ, A-2), Course Brook Farm Fall Horse Trials (MA, A-1),  Middle Tennessee Pony Club Horse Trials (TN, A-3), Heritage Park H.T. (KS, A-4),  FEH Qualifier at Loch Moy Farm (MD, A-2),  Waredaca H.T. and Classic 3 Day Event (MD, A-2),  The Event at Skyline (UT, A-9),  Radnor Hunt H.T. (PA, A-2),  Las Cruces H.T. (NM, A-10),  Greenwood Farm Inc. Fall H.T. (TX, A-5),  FEH Championships at Loch Moy Farm (MD, A-2)

Tuesday News and Notes:

Numerous Australian-themed items were stolen Saturday night at the Plantation Field Sponsor Party: stuffed animals, boomerangs, flags, books, hats, rubber snakes, etc. These were items borrowed from kind volunteers, not souvenirs from the party to take home. Plantation Field is asking that all items be returned to the venue — no judgment, no questions asked. If you have any information about who might have stolen these items, please email [email protected].

William Fox-Pitt is Coming to Great Meadows You read correctly, the master himself is coming to Great Meadow in The Plains, Virginia. Team Engaged Clinics is hosting a two day clinic with Mr. Fox-Pitt November 10 and 11 that will focus on all three phases. You must fill out this form if you are interested in riding in the clinic, auditors are being asked to sign up in advance, and volunteers are still needed. Stay tuned to Eventing Nation for your chance to win two auditors passes. [William Fox-Pitt Clinic Info]

Just Another Day for Boyd Martin. We can all agree that there is a certain amount of chaos when competing just one horse at an event, but 7 is all in a days work for Boyd Martin. This past weekend Boyd brought 7 horses to Plantation Field International and makes it look easy. A seamless exchange of tack and horses for each ride, as well as dealing with owners, supporters, fans, and media add up to another day at the office for Boyd. [Behind the Scenes with Boyd Martin]

If Your Barn Were a High School. At this point most are  settled back into school for the fall. Now imagine your barn aisleway is your alma mater’s hallway, and your beloved moody equine was a hormone filled teen (not quite a quantum leap is it?). Would they be the know it all, a jock, or the teachers pet? Find out where your horse would fit into the hierarchy of high school. [If Your Horse Was a High School Student]

Failing To Plan Is Planning To Fail. With some of our friends out west being forced to make decisions about what to do with their horses in an emergency, its time to look a bit closer to home. Don’t wait until an emergency is knocking on your door to make your plan. Make hay while the sun is shining and come up with your equine emergency preparedness plan now. [Are You Ready?]

Muzzle or Not to Muzzle, That is The Question. Thoughts of Hannibal Lecter and Jason from Friday the 13th come to mind when we think of muzzles, but they can be your best friend on the right horse in the right situation. Putting your horse/pony in a dry lot may not be available where you are and a muzzle may mean a better more natural lifestyle for them. It is suggested you consult your veterinarian in making the decision about muzzling your horse/pony, but here is some impartial guidance on muzzling. [Advise on Grazing Muzzles]

Tuesday Video:

I really enjoy highlighting videos from the previous weekend’s horse trials. Since this past weekend was the Best Event Ever at Plantation Field International, I give you a taste of the CIC* track. Follow along as Kelly Prather and D.A. Calimero ride early on Saturday while it is still a bit foggy out.

Bortuzzo & Omina, Dutton & Icabad Crane Win Plantation Field CIC* Divisions

Icabad Crane, the horse who began Phillip's relationship with Graham Motion. Photo by Jenni Autry. Icabad Crane, the horse who began Phillip's relationship with Graham Motion. Photo by Jenni Autry.

With the CIC2* cross country going on at the same time at Plantation Field International, the riders in the one-star took to the stadium arena. The course, designed by Marc Donovan, tested the riders with good turning questions and an option at fence 6, making sure they budgeted their time appropriately for the 13 jumping efforts ahead of them.

Elizabeth Bortuzzo walks away with a CIC win under her belt. After leading division A the entire weekend, she left herself a one rail buffer. That buffer came in very handy on the last fence when Omina bumped a rail with her front legs, finishing on a score of 43.7. “I was trying to keep a nice and active canter and get the distances,” Elizabeth said. “I planned on taking the option at six. I got to the last fence and let her go a little too much.”

Elizabeth Bortuzzo and Omina CIC* Plantation Field International. Photo by Dave Taylor

Elizabeth Bortuzzo and Omina CIC* Plantation Field International. Photo by Dave Taylor.

As she looks forward to the rest of her season, Elizabeth and Omina have Morven Park and the CIC2* at Virginia Horse Trials. “She will get a break after Virginia, and hopefully we can pick up the momentum in the spring and keep moving,” Elizabeth said.

Ryan Wood had an amazing round and went double clear on Ruby with her breeder, Ilona English watching from the sidelines. Having had a stellar dressage test and a clean cross country round, Ryan finishes on his dressage score of 44.7.

“I took the course on a little bit and rode forward with good rhythm. After having the planks at fence 6 down twice yesterday, I decided to take the option today,” Ryan said. “We are going to take her to the one-star at Virginia to finish off the season, but are enjoying having a great finish here at Plantation.”

Ryan Wood and Ruby CIC* Plantation Field International. Photo by Dave Taylor

Ryan Wood and Ruby CIC* Plantation Field International. Photo by Dave Taylor.

Kelly Prather on D.A. Calimero, Buck Davidson on Riviera, Phillip Dutton on D.O.D. Rockefeller, and Kristen Bond on Enough Already finish out the top six of the CIC*-A division.

Phillip Dutton and the Thoroughbred superstar Icabad Crane jumped clear and inside the time to hold their overnight lead and win the B division. Graham and Anita Motion, owners of the bay gelding, were able to witness firsthand Icabad’s first FEI win. Going into cross country, Phillip said, “He has had a pretty quick ride in the sport. Every time he comes out, it’s pretty new for him. He’s got a good heart, and I want to make sure Icabad gets experience at all the jumps so he get a good base in his education.”

Today in stadium, Phillip piloted Icabad around the course going double clear. He kept his turns very handy throughout the course and went double clear finishing on his dressage score of 41.1. “He’s not the most orthodox jumper, but he’s very clean. I went in just wanting a clean round for him, so I made sure I had plenty of power at each jump,” Phillip said.

Phillip Dutton and Icabad Crane CIC* Plantation Field International. Photo by Dave Taylor

Phillip Dutton and Icabad Crane. Photo by Dave Taylor.

“Icabad’s big CCI debut will be at Kentucky MidSouth, and he will be doing a demonstration at the Thoroughbred Makeover as well. He has me really excited for his future,” Phillip said.

Finishing just behind Phillip is Ellie MacPhail on RF Panamera, having moved back into second place after stadium. The pair went double clear though Marc Donovan’s course, taking a gamble at fence six and jumping the planks as most took the option. “Pax is really careful in the stadium, so I was really confident taking the direct route over the planks,” Ellie said.

Ellie and Pax had one of 11 double clear rounds, making this division all about rails left in the cups. Ellie said, “I haven’t ridden her in a ring like this before, but she was great and stepped right up to the challenge today.” Ellie plans to take Pax to MidSouth as well after a stop off at Morven to finish off the season.

Elinor MacPhail and RF Panamera CIC* Plantation Field International. Photo by Dave Taylor

Elinor MacPhail and RF Panamera CIC* Plantation Field International. Photo by Dave Taylor.

Jan Byyny kept the pressure on the leaders all weekend long, moving up in the standing after each phase. “As we looked at cross country, I knew time would be an issue. After a fall in my first round, I was a bit nervous heading out with Urrem, as she can be a bit too careful,” Jan explained. “She was great through the entire course, and I had a lot of fun running this track on her.”

Going double clear on cross country, Jan focused on the stadium course. “Urrem is a really good jumper, and that was her job before I got her. She can also be a really hot ride, but she put in a great effort on a great and smart course designed by Marc,” Jan said. She concludes the CIC*-B on her dressage score of 43.3.

Jan also talked about why this is the Best. Event. Ever. “Plantation has done a great job with this event. They have a great community running this show, and knowing from my own show (Surefire Horse Trials), it is not an easy task. Hats off to the for putting on such a great show for the eventing community.”

Jan Byyny and Urrem Plantation Field International CIC*. Photo by Dave Taylor

Jan Byyny and Urrem Plantation Field International CIC*. Photo by Dave Taylor.

Lucia Strini on JMF Master Cooley, Meghan O’Donoghue on Palm Crescent, and Caitlin Silliman on Vagabon de Champdoux finish out the top six placing of the CIC*-B division.

Stay tuned for the conclusion of the CIC3* and the full report from the CIC2* at Plantation Fields International.

Plantation Field: WebsiteRide TimesLive ScoresEN’s CoverageTwitterInstagram


Young Riders Take On Plantation Field CIC*

Skyler Decker on Inoui Von Bost, Plantation Field International CIC* Skyler Decker on Inoui Von Bost, Plantation Field International CIC*

As you already know, Plantation Field International is the Best Event Ever. It seems that Plantation is a great place for young riders to grow as well. Today after cross country we caught up with Skyler Decker and Grace Fulton in the barns to break down their day.

Skyler Decker is a young rider from Area II. We last saw Skyler and her horse Inoui Von Bost this past July in Kentucky at NAJRYC, where she was part of the gold medal Area II team. She bought Ouiji last year in order to keep moving up the levels and has been on a roll ever since. Skyler explains what she has been up to since Kentucky as well as her plans for the rest of the year in this interview:

We also had the chance to talk to Grace Fulton, also an Area II young rider. Grace is also taking part in the first annual Triple Crown Nutrition Prelim to PRO CIC1* Team Final, which is taking placing this weekend during Plantation Field International.

Plantation is Grace’s first FEI appearence since NAJRYC 2014, where she was part of the 2014 gold medal Area II team. Along with her horse Leo the Lion Hearted, Grace has had to deal with the true international atmosphere here at Plantation Field International.

Thank you to both Skyler and Grace for taking time out of their days to talk with us. Good luck to all the riders at Plantation tomorrow as we finish up in stadium for the CIC* and cross country for both the CIC2* and CIC3*. Keep checking back for updates tomorrow from the Best Event Ever.

Plantation Field: WebsiteRide TimesLive ScoresEN’s CoverageTwitterInstagram

Elizabeth Bortuzzo, Phillip Dutton Top CIC* Divisions at Plantation Field

Elizabeth Bortuzzo on Omina at Plantation Field CIC*. Photo by Dave Taylor. Elizabeth Bortuzzo on Omina at Plantation Field CIC*. Photo by Dave Taylor.

The one-star riders tackled the cross country course this morning while the two-star riders were putting it down in show jumping. The course, designed by Nina Fout, spanned 2,632 meters making great use of the rolling hills of Plantation Field. With a total of 28 obstacles, which contains five combinations and two water jumps, the optimum time was set at 5 minutes, 4 seconds.

In division A, Elizabeth Bortuzzo on Omina remains the leader heading into Sunday. With a great double clear round put in, less than a rail separates her from Kristen Bond and Enough Already as we look forward to stadium. A three-way tie remains between Ryan Wood on Ruby, Erika Nesler on Right Above It, and Kelly Prather on D.A. Calimero for third place.

Kristen Bond and Enough Already at the Ruins Plantation CIC*-A

Kristen Bond and Enough Already at the Ruins Plantation CIC*-A. Photo by David Taylor.

Buck Davidson holds sixth and seventh places on Legion Kat and Riviera, and Phillip Dutton on D.O.D. Rockefeller rounds out the top either. A total of 34 rider and horse combinations will be moving onto the show jumping tomorrow morning.

Division B had a decent shake-up of the top 10 at the conclusion of cross country. Phillip Dutton on Icabad Crane made this course look easy putting in one of the 10 double clears for the division. Phillip holds on to his dressage score of 41.1 and moves into first place with a fast round 19 seconds inside the time. Icabad handled his first FEI cross country round with an expert attitude.

Phillip Dutton and Icabad Crane. Photo by Jenni Autry.

Phillip Dutton and Icabad Crane. Photo by Jenni Autry.

Caitlin Silliman and Vagabon de Champdoux are drafting closely behind Phillip in the number two position. Adding only .8 time penalties to their dressage score has them sitting on a 42.1 as they look ahead to the main arena tomorrow. During her ride she was held before fence 15 due to a downed rider: “When I was held I didn’t know if James would pick back up again upon restart, but he did and kept jumping really well.”

Thinking about tomorrow: “I’m exactly one point behind Phillip now, and Phillip always puts in an amazing show jump round,” Caitlin said. “I’m always a nervous show jumper, but James is a really good jumper, and if we can ride and jump well together, I’d be happy finishing behind Phillip.”

Caitlin Silliman and Vagabon de Champdoux over 9A the Plantation Log

Caitlin Silliman and Vagabon de Champdoux over 9A the Plantation Log. Photo by David Taylor.

Sitting on Caitlin’s six is Ellie MacPhail and RF Panamera. Ellie picked up 4 time penalties, dropping her back into third on a 42.4, a whisker behind Caitlin. “The course was great today. Everything rode really well but was definitely a challenge especially on the back end of the course with the angled fences and the corners.”

“The first combination was a a bit sticky. She took a peak before the first element, and it wasn’t as smooth as I wanted. She seemed to hold on to it for a little bit, but let go by the fist water where she really clicked in,” Ellie said. When asked about show jumping, Ellie says: “Pax is a really good show jumper, but is still green in the arena in regards to turning questions. I’m confident in her abilities though and am looking forward to tomorrow.”

Elinor MacPhail

Elinor MacPhail and RF Panamera over jump 18c at Plantation Field CIC* Photo by Dave Taylor

The top five are separated by less than 3 points, making this anyone’s game looking forward. A single rail down can shake up the leaderboard once again. Tomorrow’s course is designed by Marc Donovan and should be a blast to watch the one-star divisions have their go. The first ride for division A starts at 9 a.m. EST, and division B kicks off at 10:30 a.m. EST. Go Plantation Field International. Go Eventing.

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">Plantation CIC*-A Plantation CIC*-B

DeAnna Burke and Davinci Lead CIC*-B at Plantation Field

DeAnna Burke,  Davinci, and Safety Chinch at Plantation Field International CCI*-B DeAnna Burke, Davinci, and Safety Chinch at Plantation Field International CCI*-B

Today was the second day of competition here at Plantation Field International, with the CIC*-B taking over ring two at 10:30 this morning. Division B is home to 37 horse and rider combinations. The field spanned the score range from lower 30s to upper 60s with all the horses seemingly unphased by the atmosphere on top of the hill on a sunny and warm September day here in Unionville, PA.

At the conclusion of the dressage portion of competition, DeAnna Burke sits in the pole position. The pair put in a great dressage test early in the class, scoring  34.6. Davinci, a 7-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding, made his second career appearance today at Plantation Field that left Deanna all smiles.

“Davinci has been slow to mature and is normally very spooky in the dressage arena, but I’ve been working all summer with Mara Depuy to gain the tools to keep his attention,” Diana said. “All the work really paid off today; he was very pleasant and wanted to work hard  making it all possible.” Looking to the cross country tomorrow: “I think the course looks great, but my plan is to ride a little conservative with the hard ground and trying to avoid a repeat of last year. He is young and inexperienced, so the most important part is to have a good go tomorrow.”

Holding the number 2 spot going into the cross country phase is Elinor MacPhail and RF Panamera. This happy pair put in a great dressage round finishing on a 38.4. Both Ellie and Pax rode an extremely steady and consistent test leaving little left to be desired. After having two years off due to injury, RF Panamera has come back very nicely, “but she is still a touch green” Ellie says.

Elinor MacPhail and RF Panamera with Safety Chinch at Plantation Fields International CIC*-B. Photo by David Taylor

Elinor MacPhail and RF Panamera with Safety Chinch at Plantation Fields International CIC*-B. Photo by David Taylor

“The nice thing about her (RF Panamera) is she is pretty quiet. That kind of atmosphere usually perks her up just enough. I had a little more horse than I thought I would in the beginning, but she settled right in as we got into the trot work a bit,” Ellie Said. “Heading into tomorrow, Plantation has done a great job with the one-star course with great questions set up for these horses. The height is very friendly but is a good step up.”

Plantation Field International has grown each year and seems to be putting the final touches on a world class event. “I haven’t been here for two years, and the changes they have made are amazing,” Ellie says. “The Purina rider tent is super; anytime you are thirsty or hungry you know that they will take good care of all of us.”

Jorgen Olijslager rode in the middle of the day holding on to a top stop with a 40.4. Northern Quest Lady’s Man, a 7-year-old Irish Sport Horse,  has brought up through the YEH by Jorgen hiself and now he is getting comfortable at the FEI level.

“Since he was a young horse, Lady’s Man has had a calm and collected demeanor. He went thought the Young Event Horse series as a 4 and 5 year old, giving him a great introduction to the eventing scene,” Jorgen says. “He never really gets nervous about being in a big ring, so I’ve been really lucky not having to deal with his nerves in that type of situation.”

Jorgen Olijslager and Northern Quest Ladys Man at Plantation Fields Internationl CIC* Photo by David Taylor

Jorgen Olijslager and Northern Quest Lady’s Man at Plantation Fields Internationl CIC* Photo by David Taylor

Jorgen had just got back from taking his first look at tomorrow’s cross country course walking with mentor Doug Payne when we spoke. “It looks like a good course that is a bit different from last year. They have set us up some good combinations and some great galloping lanes as well,” said Jorgen. “Since we were here last year, he (Lady’s Man) has dome a lot of maturing. I’m coming into this year with a good expectaion of what my horse can do and what he is capable of.”

Also in the field is Icabad Crane, who is competing in his first FEI competition ridden by Phillip Dutton. Icabad was the winner of the 2014 Retired Racehorse Project’s Thoroughbred Makeover. With Phillip at the helm, the pair finished 4th after dressage on a 41.1. Icabad will make his CCI debut next month at Hagyard Mid South in Lexington, Kentucky.

Stay tuned tomorrow as we bring you cross country coverage from the Plantation Field Internation CIC*

Go Best Event Ever. Go Eventing.

Plantation Field International CIC*-B

Plantation Field International CIC*-B

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Elizabeth Bortuzzo and Omina Lead CIC1*-A at Plantation Field

Warm up before the first bell in dressage. Photo by David Taylor. Warm up before the first bell in dressage. Photo by David Taylor.

The CIC 1* Division A wrapped up this afternoon at Plantation Field International Horse Trials with only a few things changing in the field toward the end of the day. Elizabeth Bortuzzo put in an accurate, polished test to finish in the number 1 spot after dressage with a 39.7 on her own Omina. Elizabeth and Omina, a 2006 Polish Warmblood mare, haven’t had the summer season she hoped for, but she said she’s hoping to turn that around at Plantation.

“After dealing with an abscess after the Horse Park of NJ, we were sidelined until Loudoun. We were on the wait list with plans to go to Morven Park instead, when I got the email on Tuesday informing me Omina and I got a spot, so this worked out for us pretty well.” Elizabeth said. “Today was the first time I have ridden this test, and all things considered it went well.”

Elizabeth Bortuzzo, Omina, and Chinch hanging in the barns after dressage. Photo by David Taylor

Elizabeth Bortuzzo, Omina, and Chinch hanging in the barns after dressage. Photo by David Taylor.

The 1*-A was showing in Ring 1, which is situated closest to vendor village that surrounds the main arena. With several saddle companies and many other vendors, this event has the true feel of an international event. “There is a lot to look at in the main arena, and I felt I could have had a little bit better ride, but I am very pleased with Omina after the dressage,” Elizabeth said after the dressage.

Kristen Bond received a 42.4 for her test, which has her hanging in second place after this first phase on Liz Bond’s Enough Already, a 7-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding. Having ridden third in the class, she put in a very nice test that kept the pair sitting at the top all day long. The two seemed not to be phased by any of the activity as vendors and spectators got settled in for the day.

Kristen Bond and Enough Already in the Plantation Fields CIC1*-A. Photo by David Taylor

Kristen Bond and Enough Already in the Plantation Fields CIC1*-A. Photo by David Taylor.

“The horses have a tendency to be fiery, especially on top of a hill, but this year they all seem to be super quiet and settled,” Kristen said. “I didn’t pre-ride, and warmed up as I normally do. Enough Already is a superstar horse that has loads to give.” When asked about the course for Saturday, Kristen said, “The course looks really goo,d but I will be taking a closer look at it tomorrow. Plantation is such a great event that we are lucky to have so close to home.”

There is a three-way tie for third place between Ryan Wood, Kelly Prather and Erika Nesler; all three riders put in a solid test earlier in the day that has them sitting on a 44.7.

Ryan’s mount Ruby, a 6-year-old Oldenburg mare, is owned by Summit Sport Horses and was bred by Ilona English.”This is her first FEI event and she could not have been better. She’s a very obedient and rideable horse that has good flash about her,” Ryan said. “Ruby thrived on the atmosphere a bit and got good energy from it. I brought her by yesterday for ring familiarization and had a 15-minute pre-ride this morning just to get her where she needed to be.”

Ryan Wood on Ruby at Plantation Fields CIC1*-A. Photo by David Taylor

Ryan Wood on Ruby at Plantation Fields CIC1*-A. Photo by David Taylor.

With the theme for Plantation Field International being “Down Under In the Aussie Outback,” Ryan is especially hopeful that he can clinch the win for Australia this weekend.

Stay tuned for even more from the Best. Event. Ever. Tomorrow we continue with the CIC One-Star division B starting at 10:51 a.m. EST. Go Plantation Field. Go Eventing

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Leader Board after dressage

Leaderboard after dressage

Tuesday News and Notes from Cavalor

Kate Chadderton and VS McCuan Civil Liberty checking out the sights during a hack while gearing up for Blenheim. Photo by Kate Chadderton Kate Chadderton and VS McCuan Civil Liberty checking out the sights during a hack while gearing up for Blenheim. Photo by Kate Chadderton

It seems like forever ago that Kate Chadderton, VS McCuan Civil Liberty and I all climbed aboard Kate’s rig and made the four hour drive to New York City from her base in Woodbine, Maryland. On any given day this would have been no big deal, but last Tuesday was the beginning of a great journey for  Kate and Libby as they were heading to compete at Blenheim.

I had the pleasure of joining Kate for the drive to JFK in order to bring her rig home after the precious cargo was dropped off at the VetPort (I’m fairly certain they would not have allowed the rig to be parked in the cell lot for two weeks). It was so much fun seeing the anticipation and excitement in Kate’s eyes as our drive together came to an end, but was totally reassuring as a fellow eventer that dreams can and do come true. Our conversation on the four hour journey bounced from current events in the horse world, to both of our plans for this fall and winter, and then to the roads, traffic, and insane tolls that had to be traversed just to get to JFK. Before I knew it, I was racing back out of the city as fast as I could to beat evening traffic.

While in Europe awaiting competition, Kate is basing herself out of Chris Burton’s yard, which is about an hour outside London in the town of Surrey. Reports on Liberty are good as he gears up for his first competition outside of North America. It is an awesome feeling to be part of this journey, even if I was just the driver. Best of luck to Kate and Liberty this week as they take on one of the biggest three-stars in the world.

Events Opening Today:  Rocking Horse Fall H.T. (FL, A-3),  Galway Downs International Event & H.T. (CA, A-6),  Fresno County Horse Park Combined Test (CA, A-6),  Pine Hill Fall H.T. (TX, A-5),  The Virginia CCI1*, CIC2* and H.T. (VA, A-2),  Full Gallop Farm Fall H.T. (SC, A-3)

Events Closing This Week:  Spokane Sport Horse Farm Fall H.T. (WA, A-7),  Fair Hill International Three-day Event (MD, A-2), Morven Park Fall H.T. (VA, A-2),  Kent School Fall H.T. (CT, A-1),  Woodside International Horse Trials (CA, A-6),  WindRidge Farm Fall Horse Trials (NC, A-2),  Fair Hill International Three-day Event (MD, A-2)

Tuesday News and Notes:

Beezie Madden Joins the Cavalor Team. Last Friday with help from Michael Pollard (Cavalor North America CEO) and her husband John Madden, Beezie announced that she had made the decision to partner with the high-performance equine nutrition company, Cavalor. Madden will be feeding an array for feed and supplements from the Cavalor product range to her horses including Cortes C Coral, Reed Via Volo, and Simon. [Bezzie Madden Joins Forces with Cavalor]

Could the Hunt Field Benefit From Cross Country Jump Safety? Everyone wants this sport and all other equine sports to be as safe as possible. With frangible devices having become common place to aid in the reduction of rotational falls, the desire to also decrease these falls in the hunt field is paramount as well. Existing technologies would not work outside of eventing due to the lack of a grounds crew and the large number of horses and riders jumping one right after the other. Other technologies are in development that wouldn’t require resetting. As new technologies develop, safer jumps may start appearing in the hunt field.

EQUUS Internation Film Festival to Feature “Fork in The Road”. The film “Fork in The Road” is a documentary about Margaret “Gigi” McIntosh and her journey from International Event Rider to International Para-Equestrian. The film features those who have been most infulentail in her career, including Bruce Davidson, Mary Hazzard, Jan Smith, Jane Cory, and Missy and Jessica Ransehousen. The festival will be held in Missoula Montana on September 19th. [EQUUS International Film Festival]

9 Days and Counting to AEC. Returning to Texas Rose Horse Park in Tyler, Texas, the 2015 USEA American Eventing Championships is now just 9 days away. 15 divisions will be competing for $100,000 in prize money as well as hundreds of thousands of dollars in prizes. Volunteers are still needed for the event so be sure to sign up to get involved. [Countdown to AEC]

Jennie Brannigan Keeps Head Down and Works Harder. Jennie updates us in a new blog that picks up from last spring, to being the best alternate she could be at the PanAm Games. She also touches on the loss of a great friend that was there for her when it counted the most. Through the good and the bad, Jennie knows how lucky she is and will keep the faith. [One Step Closer]

USEA Releases Video on Trailer Safety. Together with Virginia Tech, Michigan State, ISELP, and Capitol Productions TV, the USEA has released a video about trailer safety. Dr. Amy Norvall of Virginia Equine imaging instructs viewers on trailer safety. This short video covers horse stress, trip planning, and proper documentation of your horse for traveling among other topics safety topics. [USEA Trailer Safety]

Tuesday Video Break:

It is not often I find a video to put in here that truly inspires. Take the time to watch this mini documentary from start to finish as it will change you as a rider. Prepare yourself to feel every emotion possible as you watch someone so deserving of great success make her way to beyond the “Fork in The Road”.

Cavlor New Product Alert

Cavalor FlyLess


Tuesday News and Notes from Cavalor

Tamra Smith and Mai Baum competing at Copper Meadows in the CIC3* Photo by Natalie Kuhny Tamra Smith and Mai Baum competing at Copper Meadows in the CIC3* Photo by Natalie Kuhny

This weekend was a weekend dreams are made of for Tamie Smith while competing at Copper Meadows Horse Trials. When glancing at EventingScores.com, her name appears over and over and over again. Tamie took top honors in the Shires Equestrians CIC1* on Fleeceworks Royal, Western Underground CIC2* on Chatwin, and Professionals Choice CIC3* on Mai Baum. She also placed fourth on Dempsey in the CIC2* as well. Congratulations to Tamie and all of her connections on an amazing weekend at Copper Meadows.

Events Opening Today:  Waredaca H.T. and Classic 3 Day Event (MD, A-2),  Hagyard Midsouth Three-day Event & Team Challenge H.T. (KY, A-8),  Holly Hill Fall H.T. (LA, A-5),  “The Event” at Kelly’s Ford (VA, A-2),  Chattahoochee Hills H.T. (GA, A-3),  Windermere Run H.T. (MO, A-4)

Events Closing This Week:  Stable View Horse Trials (SC, A-3),  Nutrena USEA AEC, Adequan Gold Cup Finals, and ATC Finals (TX, A-5),  Jump Start H.T. (KY, A-8),  The Event Derby & Clinics at Fresno County Horse Park (CA, A-6),  Flora Lea Fall H.T. (NJ, A-2),  Surefire H.T. (VA, A-2),  Sundance Farm H.T. (WI, A-4),  University of New Hampshire H.T. (NH, A-1)

Tuesday News and Notes:

Burghley, The Good, The Bad, The Ugly. All four-star courses have their moments and some are celebrated as great saves, others send riders home early. Burghley had no shortage of these moments from Michael Jung and FischerRocana FST falling at the water to Louise Harwood being chased by a dog on course. Check out 13 moments that will make you hold on a little tighter next time you ride. [13 Heart-Stopping Moments from Burghely]

The Big Apple a No-Go for Valegro. Charlotte Dujardin has announced that after the double gold win in Aachen that they will not be making the trek across the Atlantic later this month. Valegro’s owners and Dujardin have decided to give the 2002 Dutch Warmblood a well deserved break after the European Championships . This decision was made in the horse’s best interest with eyes still hard set on the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio. Dujardin will still make the trip to New York to ride an un-named horse in the U.S. Open $75,000 Dressage Freestyle. [Valegro Withdrawn from Central Park]

Francis Wittington Speaks his Mind Prior to Blair. In an interview, Francis Wittington has many words of advice for other eventers. Francis feels that “we can make it safer” by re-focusing our training habits and using dressage to improve our jumping and cross country. He also believes each professional rider should have a “Plan B”, giving the example of his work in equine dentistry to pay the bills when eventing doesn’t. [Francis Wittington Interview]

Horse Cheese a Reality. A food technologist has pioneered a technique to produce cheese from both horses and donkeys. Dr. Giuseppe Iannella has discovered that the use of an enzyme found in camel rennet has made it possible to produce an appropriate curd to be able to make equid cheese. The curds from mares milk can be used to make different styles of cheese as well as using the whey to make horse ricotta. More studies will need to be preformed to assess the viability of equid cheese and milk as a substitute for those with food allergies. [Technique developed to make cheese from horse and donkey milk]

Tuesday Video Break:

Hop on board Fernhill Pimms along with William Fox-Pitt as he makes his way around the Burghley cross country course with a tiny helmet cam. The helmet cam was a prototype that is not found on the market commercially, but WFP had special dispensation to wear it. Check out the first person view of their round.

Tuesday News and Notes from Cavalor

Chinch sports his sharp and safe new cross country attire designed and made by Deborah Taylor, Nicki Carson, and David Taylor. Photo by David Taylor Chinch sports his sharp and safe new cross country attire designed and made by Deborah Taylor, Nicki Carson, and David Taylor. Photo by David Taylor

It has become very apparent that we have let our furry comrade go without for too long. Since all of us here at Eventing Nation are all about safety and always wearing a helmet (#mindyourmelon), we sent out for proper cross country attire for Chinch. As is such, his sizes are not normally stocked in most tack shops (which I know all about).

A custom helmet and vest fit for a chinchilla were designed, tested, and made with safety being a top priority. We believe that from now on, Chinch will be an upstanding spokes-chilla for the sport of eventing!

Events Opening Today:  Galway Downs International Event & H.T. (CA, A-6),  Fresno County Horse Park Horse Trials (CA, A-6), The Virginia CCI1*, CIC2* and H.T. (VA, A-2)

Events Closing This Week:  Stone Gate Farm H.T. (OH, A-8),  Otter Creek Fall Horse Trial (WI, A-4),  Stanton Farms H.T. (ID, A-7), Marlborough H.T (MD, A-2),  Stoneleigh-Burnham School Fall H.T. (MA, A-1),  Twin Rivers Fall H.T. (CA, A-6),  Fleur de Leap Horse Trials (LA, A-5),  Plantation Field International CIC and Horse Trials (PA, A-2), Tryon Riding & Hunt Club H.T. (SC, A-3),  Fleur de Leap Horse Trials (LA, A-3)

Tuesday News and Notes:

Michael Jung, Burghley Rookie. With Burghley on the horizon, Michael Jung gets ready for his Debut at the sixth leg of the FEI Classics. He has brought along two equine partners to test the bold cross country course, FisherRocana FST and La Biosthetique Sam. Jung will be in the company of 80 total horses from eight nations making us excited for the start of Burghley. [Olymic Champion Jung Makes Burghley Debut]

Double Hit = Double Price. Prices at the 2015 Oldenburg Elite Foal Auction in Vechta hit staggering numbers. The top selling foal, Double Hit (by Diamond Hit x Sandro Hit) a 2015 colt, sold to a buyer in Austria for 110,000 euro ($123,337.50 American). The second most expensive foal sold for 65,000 euro ($72881.25 American). Out of 80 foals presented for auction, 19 sold for more than 20,000 euro and the average foal price being 16,000 euro. [Double Hit, Price Highlight]

The Wedding A Horse Girl Dreams of. Every girl has dreams of the picture perfect horse wedding including both loves of your life. But it isn’t as easy as it seems including a 1000 pound equine in the ceremony, I know from personal experience. There are hundreds of ways to include your passion in your special day without exposing your guests to the fire breathing eventing dragon you love more than your new spouse. Check out the hints from industry specialists on how to make your day the one you have been dreaming of. [How to have a horsey wedding]

Traffic Advisory Ahead of Burghely. Highways England is advising all travelers to plan well in advance over the four days of Burghely Horse Trials. Travelers are to be advised of possible closures of slip roads off of the A1 near Stamford . Highways England is striving to keep road users safe and well informed. [Traffic warning ahead of land Rover Burghley Horse Trials]

Tuesday Video Break:

Burghley Horse Trials begins in two days, take a aerial ride through the course including the alternate routes that a possible 80 horses will be facing.

Tuesday News and Notes from Cavalor

Mike Pindleton falls off his mount on purpose to demonstrate how an air jacket works. Photo by Cindy Lawler Mike Pindleton falls off his mount on purpose to demonstrate how an air jacket works. Photo by Cindy Lawler

Its not every day you see someone “fall” off their horse on purpose. This past weekend those that attended “Eventing with the Stars” at Windura witnessed this first hand as Mike Pindleton demonstrated to the audience how a properly functioning air vest works. Mike walked away with out a scratch which showed how incredibly important rider safety is in our sport. A part of this symposium highlighted Olympic rider’s thoughts on eventing safety.

Events Opening Today:  Waredaca H.T. and Classic 3 Day Event (MD, A-2),  The Event at Skyline (UT, A-9),  Radnor Hunt H.T.(PA, A-2),  Las Cruces H.T. (NM, A-10),  Paradise Farm H.T. (SC, A-3),  ESDCTA New Jersey H.T. at the Horsepark (NJ, A-2),  Middle Tennessee Pony Club Horse Trials (TN, A-3),  FEH Championships at Loch Moy Farm (MD, A-2),  The Maryland H.T. at Loch Moy Farm (MD, A-2),  Course Brook Farm Fall Horse Trials (MA, A-1),  Heritage Park H.T. (KS, A-4),  Greenwood Farm Inc. Fall H.T. (TX, A-5),  FEH Qualifier at Loch Moy Farm (MD, A-2)

Events Closing This Week:  Dunnabeck H.T. (IL, A-4),  Flying Cross Farm H.T. (KY, A-8),  GMHA September Horse Trials (VT, A-1), King Oak Farm Fall H.T. (MA, A-1),  Feather Creek H.T. (OK, A-5),  Bucks County Horse Park Fall H.T. (PA, A-2),  Poplar Place Farm September H.T. (GA, A-3),  Area IX Championships & CCC Fall H.T. (CO, A-9), The Event at Santa Fe (NM, A-10)

Tuesday News and Notes:

Ocala Jockey Club Plans for New Cross Country Course. The Ocala Jockey Club is teaming up with EquiVentures to design and build a cross country course on the club’s 950-acre grounds. With help from course designer Mike Etherington-Smith and Richard Jeffery to oversee the construction of the course and stadium arena. Hopes are high to host a competition next year. [Big plans for new Florida horse trials event]

Congratulations to this month’s C4 Color Love challenge! We received some really great photos for our blue theme this month, and Ashley Harvey is the voted winner of a brand new C4 belt! Congratulations, Ashley! [#C4ColorLove Challenge

Calling all bareback riders! Chatt Hills is hosting a Bareback Puissance at its August Horse Trials, and today is the last day to enter! The Puissance will be held on Saturday, August 29 and $500 is up for grabs to the winner. [Chatt Hills Bareback Puissance]

Area II Young Riders is Looking for Help. The Area II Council is searching for one or more coordinators to help our Young Riders continue their winning streak. The perspective coordinator, along with Chris Donovan (Area II YRAP coordinator) , will work closely with Sinead Halpin, our Young Rider Coach, who has signed on for another 3 year stint. If you are interested or know someone who you think would be just perfect in this role, please send Duncan MacRae an email with your information. Please remember this is a volunteer position. [[email protected]]

Was He in The Way, Or Not? Upon the conclusion of Cian O’Connor’s jump round at the European Championships, Cian and the Irish team lodged a protest with the Ground jury. They claimed that between fence 10 and 11 a member of the jump crew interfered with his line to fence 11. After review the FEI released a statement saying that “The protest was heard by the Ground Jury, who ruled that as the athlete had continued his round, they saw no reason to stop him by ringing the bell.” What do you think? [What do you Think?]

Eventing With The Stars a Success. People came from near and far to attend “Eventing With The Stars” hosted by Boyd Martin and Phillip Dutton at beautiful Windurra USA. Silva Martin, Emma Ford, and Icabad Crane were part of this amazing event. Even the gold medals from the Pan Am Games made an appearance during the meet and greet. [Eventing with the Stars: A Raging Success]

Tuesday Video Break:

Take a look at Buck Davidson riding his dressage test aboard Ballynoe Castle RM at Richland Park Horse Trials CIC 3*

Tuesday News and Notes from Cavalor

Australians, Boyd Martin and Dom Schramm, coming together in and effort to support fellow Aussie, Kate Chadderton. Photo by Kipp Gaynor Australians, Boyd Martin and Dom Schramm, coming together in and effort to support fellow Aussie, Kate Chadderton. Photo by Kipp Gaynor

When in need your friends will always be there. In the case when you have friends the like of Boyd Martin, Dom and Jimmie Schramm, and Ryan Wood, helping out is as simple as showing up for a BBQ.

This past weekend Kate Chadderton hosted a little get together to help raise money to send herself and McCuan Civil Liberty to Blenheim in September. Well over 75 people came out to show support for one of our sport’s great eventers, and soon enough Kate will be on her way to the UK.

Events Opening Today:  Fair Hill International Three-day Event (MD, A-2),  Woodside International Horse Trials (CA, A-6), WindRidge Farm Fall Horse Trials (NC, A-2),  Fair Hill International Three-day Event (MD, A-2),  Spokane Sport Horse Farm Fall H.T. (WA, A-7),  Kent School Fall H.T. (CT, A-1),  Morven Park Fall H.T. (VA, A-2)

Eventing Closing This Week:  Five Points H.T. (NC, A-2),  Aspen Farms H.T. (WA, A-7),  Larkin Hill H.T. (NY, A-1),  Seneca Valley Pony Club H.T. (MD, A-2),  Chardon Valley Horse Trials (MI, A-8),  Copper Meadows H.T. (CA, A-6)

Tuesday News and Notes:

Boyd Martin and Phillip Dutton are hosting an eventing symposium this Sunday, Aug. 23 at Windurra! Eventing With The Stars will cover topics ranging from how to improve your dressage scores to cross country schooling exercises you can use at home. Tickets are $60 in advance or $70 at the gate (kids 12 and under get in free). [Eventing With The Stars]

Flair Equine Nasal Strips Color Trip. Flair Equine Nasal Strips wants to know what color would best show off you personal flair. stop by Flair’s Facebook page (here) and leave a comment saying what color you think would be best. While you’re there, give them a quick like. [Flair Equine Nasal Strips]

Volcanoes, Not Just Pretty in a Picture. Despite a world of disbelief and skepticism, Leslie Wilie writes about her awe induced giggles upon a Icelandic trail pony horse.  Although there is still some doubt that a trip to Iceland actually happened, Leslie paints an amazing picture of her experience on the rim of a volcano in Reykjavik Iceland. [Trail Riding on the Side of a Volcano]

USEA Board of Governors Meet in VA. The Board of Governors met this past week in Dulles, Virginia for the annual summer meeting. During the meeting they discussed proposals for rule changes that will be brought forth to the USEF. Changes for USEA policies were also discussed as well as impact of Area realignment and new levels. [USEA Board of Governors Summer Meeting

Arm Chair Quarterbacks, Give Silver to Valegro. Spectators of the European Dressage Championship, had the opportunity, with the help of a mobile app, to co-judge the freestyle. The results were slightly different than the results given by the 7 official judges. They gave gold to Kristina Bröring-Sprehe and Desperados FRH ,  silver went to Charlotte Dujardin and Valegro , and Isabell Werth and  Don Johnson FRH won bronze. [Sideline Judges at Odds With Aachen Freestyle Results]

Tuesday Video Break:

Check out Doctor James and Tiffany Wandy on their preliminary cross country round from this past weekend at Waredaca Horse Trails. Doctor James is a 7 year old Thoroughbred that made a successful transition to eventing a little over three years ago.

Tuesday News and Notes from Cavalor

RevitaVet Capato out for a stroll at Pilchuck Equine Hospital with Jordan Linstedt. Photo from Jordan Linstedt's Facebook Page RevitaVet Capato out for a stroll at Pilchuck Equine Hospital with Jordan Linstedt. Photo from Jordan Linstedt's Facebook Page

Jordan Linstedt has been though a whirl wind of activity this past week with her Rolex partner RevitaVet Capato. Last Friday Capato was admitted to Pilchuck Equine Hospital with colic symptoms. At 1:00 AM Saturday morning after trying to treat the problem medically, Jordan and her team of vets decided the only option left was to operate.

A kink and a blockage were found in his large colon that would not have been remedied without the surgery. Capato is doing well post surgery with a tentative release date of Wednesday. Jordan is counting the days until this handsome boy is back at home in his stall. Join us in wishing Capato a full and quick recovery.

Events Opening Today:  Flora Lea Fall H.T. (NJ, A-2),  Surefire H.T. (VA, A-2),  Stable View Horse Trials (SC, A-3),  Nutrena USEA AEC, Adequan Gold Cup Finals, and ATC Finals (TX, A-5),  Sundance Farm H.T. (WI, A-4),  Jump Start H.T.(KY, A-8),  University of New Hampshire H.T. (NH, A-1),  The Event Derby & Clinics at Fresno County Horse Park (CA, A-6)

Events Closing This Week:  Town Hill Farm Horse Trials (CT, A-1),  KY Classique H.T. (KY, A-8),  Silverwood Farm Fall H.T. (WI, A-4), Chattahoochee Hills H.T. (GA, A-3),  The Event at Woodland Stallion Station (CA, A-6),  Loudoun Hunt Pony Club Fall H.T. (VA, A-2),  Moqui Meadows H.T. (CO, A-9),  Corona Del Sol Heat Buster Horse Trials(TX, A-5)

Tuesday News and Notes:

The Jockey Club is Making Changes. Starting 2017, The Jockey Club will require all new registered foals to be micro-chipped. The U.S. will then join the likes of eight other countries that already require microchips in registered Thoroughbreds. The addition of microchips to U.S. bred Thoroughbreds will aid in management and identification for the life of the horse. [Jockey Club to Require Microchips Starting 2017]

Anky Cowgirls Up for Aachen. The reining portion of the European Championships Aachen 2015 is scheduled to take place later this week and Anky van Grunsven is part of the Dutch team. This isn’t the first time Anky has donned western wear in competition, as she has been reining since 2009. Her last trip to Aachen had her strutting her stuff down center line in a top hat and tails in 2004. [Anky Returns to European Championships]

Moving Forward, Finding Balance. Matt Brown moved his entire life, including his horses and career, to the east coast from California to enhance his eventing career. While pushing the limits of local hotels and an RV, Matt and his wife have had to make some hard decisions in the name of success. In this blog by Matt, he explains the sensations felt in being an alternate for the US Pan Am team. [Summer Storms and Cicada Songs]

The Swiss Suspension Upheld. An FEI tribunal is upholding the provisional suspension of  Nino des Buissonnets, Nasa, and Charivari KG. The three horses tested positive for banned substances codeine and oripavine and controlled substance morphine in samples taken in early May. This Suspension means Steve Guerdat will be unable to ride Nino des Buissonnets, Defending Olympic Gold Medalist, at the FEI European Jumping Championship in Aachen. [FEI Tribunal maintains suspension on Swiss jumping horses]

Tuesday Video Break:

Lilybridge eventing, home of Erin Sylvester, put together this nice little video montage of Fair Hill Horse Trails from this past weekend.


Tuesday News and Notes from Cavalor

The view of the beach through a set of ears. Photo by Meghan Perry The view of the beach through a set of ears. Photo by Meghan Perry

The best part of this photo is, it was taken 30 miles off the coast of Massachusetts on the beautiful island of Nantucket. It is an often occurrence that views like this are found while out for a hack.

Three-star eventer, Meghan Perry, calls Nantucket her home during the summer months. Being 30 miles out to sea has it benefits but it can also host a world of challenges to an active upper level eventer. During these dog days of summer, I think she may be onto something; beaches, event horses, beautiful views. What a way to combine a passion for horses and a business while on such a charming Island.

Events Opening Today:  Stone Gate Farm H.T. (OH, A-8),  Twin Rivers Fall H.T. (CA, A-6),  Fleur de Leap Horse Trials (LA, A-5), Plantation Field International CIC and Horse Trials (PA, A-2),  Tryon Riding & Hunt Club H.T. (SC, A-3), Fleur de Leap Horse Trials (LA, A-3),  Marlborough H.T (MD, A-2),  Stoneleigh-Burnham School Fall H.T.(MA, A-1),  Otter Creek Fall Horse Trial (WI, A-4),  Stanton Farms H.T. (ID, A-7)

Events Closing ThisWeek: Huntington Farm H.T. (VT, A-1),  ENYDCTA/Old Chatham H.T. (NY, A-1),  Applewood Farm YEH/FEH & Modified Eventing (NJ, A-2),  Caber Farm Horse Trial (WA, A-7),  Shepherd Ranch SYVPC H.T. II (CA, A-6),  Hunt Club Farms H.T. (VA, A-2)

Tuesday News and Notes:

Are you a KER ClockIt user? If so, you’ll want to enter this awesome contest KER is hosting! To encourage consistent usage of the heart monitors, KER will be giving away an ECOGOLD Secure XC Pad during the month of August. Each session you submit after using the heart monitor will grant you an entry, so the more you use KER ClockIt, the better your chances are to win! [KER ClockIt / ECOGOLD Contest]

Aussie Team Named for Aachen. Paul Tapner and Indian Mill, Chris Burton and Grad Liberty, Kevin McNab and Casperlli as well as Andrew Hoy and Cheeky Calimbo are the horse and rider combinations to make up the Aachen round of the 2015 FEI Nations Cup Eventing Series. After posting a second at Fontainebleau and Strzegom, Australia is currently sitting pretty in third on the leader board. [Australian Team For Aachen]

The Grey Ghost Lives On. A statue of Native Dancer was unveiled this past weekend in Saratoga Springs at the newly completed Centennial Park. The likeness of one of the most famous racehorses in the US was created by sculpter Gwen Reardon is called “Going To The Winners Circle. [Native Dancer Statue Unveiled]

Silva Keeping Boyd On His Toes. Last week Silva Martin was hand walking a young horse that spooked and knocked her into the wrong side of a tractor. After a quick trip to nearby Christiana Hospital to get checked out, both Silva and Baby Martin are said to be in good health. [Boyd Martin Eventing]

Glittering Prizes at  Wellington International. In hoping to add another level to this already great event, Organizer David Sheerin asked his sponsors to step up their game. With prizes like a Prestige saddle, Soloshot2 and a private photo shoot being offered, their actions are making waves with competitors. [Prizes for all Levels at Wellington]

Tuesday Video Break:

For those of us who could not make it to Millbrook this past weekend, check out this video that will make you fall in love with everything that is Coole Park Farm.

Where Are They Now? Presented By Merial: Gryffindor

Where Are They Now is an EN series presented by Merial that catches up with horses who have retired from a successful eventing career. If you have a horse you’d like us to profile, please email [email protected] Next in our series is Kristin Bachman and her OTTB gelding Gryffindor.

Kristin Bachman riding Gryffindor at Rolex 2007. Photo by Mike McNally. Kristin Bachman riding Gryffindor at Rolex 2007. Photo by Mike McNally.

Kristin Bachman and her longtime partner Gryffindor, a 1994 off-the-track Thoroughbred gelding (Country Light – Lani Molly, by Gallant Best) had a storied career as a team. Together, the two competed at the Rolex Kentucky Three-Day Event on three different occasions and had top placings at Advanced and in multiple three-star competitions.

As a racehorse, Gryffindor, who raced under the Jockey Club name Budweise, did not have a great career. He started 26 times between 1996 and 1999 with three wins, two places and five shows and total career earnings of $18,144. Kristin’s friend, Meika Decher, an exercise rider at Emerald Downs in Auburn, Washington, at the time, bought him as an eventing prospect.

Kristin first met Gryffindor while he was laying down in a field, sprawled out and missing three of his shoes. As she looked him over, there was an instant connection between the two. Two weeks later, Kristin showed up at the farm and watched him walk, trot and canter on the lunge line. After watching him pop over a fence, she handed Meika a check.

Kristin Bachman and Gryffindor on cross country at Rolex 2007 photo by

Kristin Bachman and Gryffindor on cross country at Rolex 2007. Photo by Mike McNally.

Gryffindor was an instant cross country star. He knew his job over the fences and tried no matter what.”He showed up for work every day,” Kristin said, which set the tone for his lengthy career. Kristin first piloted him around at Training level at Horse Haven Farms in Washington in 2001. At the same horse trials a year later, he placed first in Preliminary.

He continued to excel, making his FEI debut in March 2003 at Galway Downs in the CIC2*, finishing in fourth place. Three years later, Gryffindor competed at his first Rolex. The following year, Kristin and Gryffin again competed at Rolex, but made an unfortunate mistake that eliminated them during their stadium round just five jumps from completing.

Gryffindor and Kristin then headed to the 2007 Pan American Games training camp as alternates, where Gryffindor injured his collateral ligament. The next spring while prepping for the season in Aiken, Gryffindor developed tendonitis in both front legs, which sidelined him for just over two years.

Allegra and Gryffindor at Waredaca. Photo courtesy of Allegra Aiuto.

Allegra and Gryffindor at Waredaca. Photo courtesy of Allegra Aiuto.

After a long road to recovery, the pair continued their partnership and returned to Rolex once again in 2011, where Kristin withdrew Gryffindor before cross country after record-setting rain fall the previous week. Gryffindor made one last FEI appearance at the Bromont Three-Day Event in June 2011, where the pair finished seventh in the CCI3*.

During their 10-year career together, Kristin and Gryffindor completed 52 horse trials, placing sixth or higher on 23 different occasions. Even after a length career on the track, Gryffindor proved he still had more to give.

Gryffindor’s next stop would be with Allegra Aiuto, a young rider under the tutelage of Mara DePuy. As with Kristin, Gryffindor and Allegra clicked instantly. His purpose as a young rider’s horse was to help rebuild Allegra’s lost confidence, which he started doing in their very first ride together.

Allegra finished out the 2011 season with Gryffindor by winning in the Open Training at Waredaca. Sadly, the pair had to withdraw from Morven Park’s fall horse trials before cross country, and Kristin, Mara and Allegra collectively decided to retire Gryffindor while he was sound and happy.

Kristin Bachman and Gryffindor hanging out in Upperville VA photo by David Taylor

Kristin Bachman and Gryffindor hanging out in Upperville, Virginia. Photo by David Taylor.

Gryffin, now 21 (but no one has informed him of his age), currently lives at a private farm in Upperville, Virginia, owned by Anita Antenucci. He is not alone is his retirement. Gryffindor is kept in good company by He’s Got Rhythm, one of Kim Severson’s short- listed horses for the 2004 Olympic Games in Sydney. Kristin is not far away either. She spends a good amount of time on the farm bringing up young horses, always taking the time to make sure her friend Gryffin is still happy each and every day.

Tuesday News and Notes from Cavalor

Doug Payne out for a Gallop in preparation for Millbrook Photo from Doug Payne's Facebook Page Doug Payne out for a Gallop in preparation for Millbrook Photo from Doug Payne's Facebook Page

Hold on tight as we are set for another busy weekend ahead with Millbrook Horse Trials in upstate New York. Many professionals are putting the finishing touches on their mounts and getting in their final gallop sets in before heading to the Hudson Valley.

This event is on the list for many of those getting ready to head to Blenheim in September, so you will have a sneak peak of some of the horses headed to the UK. Eventing Nation’s very own Jenni Autry will be on site giving us the latest and greatest from Coole Park Farm.

Events Opening Today:  Dunnabeck H.T. (IL, A-4),  Feather Creek H.T. (OK, A-5),  Bucks County Horse Park Fall H.T. (PA, A-2), Area IX Championships & CCC Fall H.T. (CO, A-9),  The Event at Santa Fe (NM, A-10),  GMHA September Horse Trials (VT, A-1),  King Oak Farm Fall H.T. (MA, A-1),  Flying Cross Farm H.T. (KY, A-8),  Poplar Place Farm September H.T. (GA, A-3)

Events Closing This Week:  Erie Hunt and Saddle Club H.T. (PA, A-8),  Applewood Farm YEH/FEH & Modified Eventing (NJ, A-2), Colorado Horse Park CCI1*, CIC2**,T3D & H.T. (CO, A-9),  Colorado Horse Park CCI1*, CIC2**,T3D & H.T.(CO, A-9),  Waredaca Farm H.T. (MD, A-2),  Erie Hunt and Saddle Club H.T. (PA, A-2),  Genesee Valley Riding & Driving Club H.T. (NY, A-1),  Full Gallop Farm August HT (SC, A-3)

Tuesday News and Notes:

Boston withdraws 2024 Olympic bid! With lack of public support, the USOC and Boston 2024 have decided to withdraw the bid for Boston to host the 2024 Olympics and Paralympic games. Paris, Rome, Hamburg, Budapest and Toronto are now the frontrunners for the 2024 Olympics. The host site will be announced in 2017. [Boston Globe]

Eventing With The Stars. Boyd Martin and Phillip Dutton are hosting an eventing symposium on Aug. 23 at Windurra Farm! Eventing With The Stars will cover six different topics, ranging from how to improve your dressage scores to cross country schooling exercises you can use at home. Tickets are $60 in advance or $70 at the gate (kids 12 and under get in free). [Eventing With The Stars]

I get knocked down, but I get up again, you’re never gonna keep me down. Everyone hits the dirt, some more gracefully than others, but what you after the fall is what counts. Spit out the dirt, ask for a leg, and get back to riding, or if need be go to the hospital. [Horse Nation]

“How are we gonna get both The Phantom *and* Misty for a hundred and two dollars and forty cents?” Wednesday, July 29th, marks the 90th year of Chincoteague’s annual pony swim. Tens of thousands of people will be flocking to Virginia’s most famous barrier island to watch 210 wild ponies swim from Assateauge Island to Chincoteague Island at “Slack Tide”. Who will be named King or Queen Neptune? [Chincoteague.com]

Helmet awareness day is almost here. We have all heard the horror stories of what can happen when you don’t wear a helmet. This is a story about what happens when you do, and the life that a simple helmet saved.  [SmartPak]

A new take on the saddle. Tradition has led the way with everything we do and especially the tack we use. Martin Ryan is hoping to change our way of thinking about the saddle. His design would revolutionize how saddles are made and used. [The Irish Times]

Tuesday Video Break:

With the 90th anniversary of the Chincoteague Pony Swim about to happen on Wednesday, why not see what it’s like to have one a great view of the Saltwater Cowboys swim the ponies across the Assateague Channel.

10 Questions with Blenheim-Bound Kate Chadderton

Kate Chadderton's weekly training tips have been extremely popular here on EN, so we caught up with her to get more details on her plans for the rest of the 2015 season, which include a trip to England to compete at the Blenheim Palace International Horse Trials with Patrick McCuan's VS McCuan Civil Liberty.

Kate Chadderton and VS McCuan Civil Liberty. Photo by Leslie Wylie. Kate Chadderton and VS McCuan Civil Liberty. Photo by Leslie Wylie.

After a trip to the Rolex Kentucky Three-Day Event with with Rege Dvorsky’s Collection Pass in April and another trip up to Bromont CCI with her string of off-track Thoroughbreds at the beginning of June, Maryland-based Aussie Kate Chadderton’s season is well underway.

Kate will now have a few closer stops on her eventing agenda before crossing the Atlantic Ocean with Patrick McCuan’s VS McCuan Civil Liberty (who EN talent spotted back in 2012) on her way to compete at the Blenheim Palace International Horse Trials, and we got a great opportunity to chat with Kate at her beautiful home base in Woodbine, Maryland, before she kicks into high gear.

EN: What prompted your move from Australia to the United States?

Kate: “Boyd (Martin) was integral in the process. He had strongly encouraged me to come over and check out the scene. I had a gap in my competition season, so I decided to come over here and check it out while Rolex was going on. Both Boyd and Heath Ryan, my old trainer from Australia, were competing that year, and it seemed like a good time to check it out.

“I came over without a strong plan to move, but within an hour of landing in Kentucky, I had decided to sell everything then and make the move.”

EN: What is the biggest difference between U.S. eventing and eventing in Australia?

Kate: “There are many differences, but this might sum them all up. In Australia, the horses run at 45-second intervals, so read into that how you like. There is a lot more riding on farms and not barns. Most people keep their horses on their own farms and not in a boarding situation.

“There is a lot more traveling in Australia as well. For example, to get to Adelaide it takes a couple days of travel compared to here, where it’s rare to travel more than a day’s time to get to an event. Also, there are more events here; during the season you can event every week if you wanted to.”

Kate Chadderton and Buckharo. Photo by Jenni Autry.

EN: What events are on your competition bucket list?

Kate: “I want to say the big four-stars, but I would really like to do Aachen, the greatest horse show on earth. I’d like to do Badminton and Burghley, which I see me checking those off my list in the not too distant future, maybe with Liberty.

“I’d love to compete at Luhmühlen and Blenheim, which will get checked off shortly. Really I would like to compete in every country that hosts a three-day. It’s a global thing for me, not just United States or Australia.”

EN: If you could give advice to an aspiring upper-level eventer, what would it be?

Kate: “Go to college and get a business degree. Then find a rider that believes in you and train with them until they will no longer have you around. You need a cheerleader, and you need to learn how to market yourself and how to use money when you get it.”

EN: What was the name of your first horse?

Kate: “Bluey — she was a white Welsh Mountain Pony. Mum got her when I was about 4, and I wasn’t allowed to ride her off the lunge rein until I was about 7 because she would run away. Come to think of it, I would still ride her on occasion until I was about 15, and she would still run away. I never did learn how to stop that horse.”

Kate Chadderton and VS McCuan Civil Liberty. Photo by Leslie Wylie.

Kate Chadderton and VS McCuan Civil Liberty. Photo by Leslie Wylie.

EN: What’s the best advice you’ve been given?

Kate: “Never, never, never give up.” Sometimes this sport is easy, sometimes it’s hard, sometimes things go your way and other times they don’t. There is no such thing as luck because you make your own luck, but be sure that when things get hard you just put one foot in front of the other and never give up. Before you know it, you will find success.”

EN: If you could take a spin on any horse, past or present, who would it be?

Kate: “I love little horses, so I would have to say Mark Todd’s Charisma. He was very popular when I was a kid, so I had him on my school books. I’d watch videos of him, and I saw him carry the torch into the arena of the Commonwealth Games in Auckland in 1990.

“To me he was the most famous horse or, for that matter, the most famous living thing, and he was my hero. I also had heard he was quite grumpy. I would also like another chance with my first three-star horse, Danny, as a 6-year-old. I think he was one of the best horses I will ever ride.”

EN: Do you have any superstitions or good luck charms?

Kate: “Every single day, I put my left shoe on first. I also have a little saying that I repeat to myself before leaving the start box on every horse regardless of the level.” (She would not tell me the saying no matter how hard I tried to convince her!)

Kate Chadderton and Collection Pass. Photo by Leslie Wylie.

Kate Chadderton and Collection Pass. Photo by Leslie Wylie.

EN: If you didn’t have to worry about running your business for six months, who would you go train with?

Kate: “I love show jumping; it’s a passion of mine. So I would love to go spend the time with Olympic gold medalist Scott Brash. Even this morning I watched his winning Grand Prix jump round from the Global Champions Tour maybe five or six times.”

EN: With your intention to travel to Blenheim this September, how will you and Liberty prepare? Will any of Liberty’s owners or your friends travel to Woodstock to cheer you on?

Kate: “We are going to Millbrook first at Advanced, then Richland for the three-star, and then Five Points right before we leave.

“I am hoping to be joined by one of Liberty’s owners, but she is competing at Dressage at Devon that same week. I’m hoping the ride times work out so that she will be able to join me.

“One of my best friends lives in London. I’m beyond excited to see her and for her to be able to come watch Liberty and I ride at Blenheim. Kylie and I went through Pony Club together, went to our first event together, and she still follows closely on all the things I do.”

Tuesday News and Notes from Cavalor

Chinch tubing on the Chesapeake Bay Photo by David Taylor Chinch tubing on the Chesapeake Bay Photo by David Taylor

After an exhausting trip to Kentucky for NAJRYC, and with his mount already en-route to Rebecca Farm, Chinch needed a little R&R before he heads to Montana. As the newest member of the EN team this was my chance to prove myself to my furry leader.

With heat being the talk of the weekend in most of the country, I figured Chinch would enjoy some time on the water. We headed east to the home of the Maryland Blue Crab and enjoyed some boat time on the Chesapeake Bay.

Events Opening Today:  Larkin Hill H.T. (NY, A-1),  Chardon Valley Horse Trials (MI, A-8),  Copper Meadows H.T. (CA, A-6), Seneca Valley Pony Club H.T. (MD, A-2),  Five Points H.T. (NC, A-2),  Aspen Farms H.T. (WA, A-7)

Events Closing This Week:  Area VII Young Rider Benefit H.T. (WA, A-7),  Windy Wyoming H.T. (WY, A-9,  GMHA Festival of Eventing August Horse Trials (VT, A-1),  Otter Creek Summer H.T. (WI, A-4),  The Summer Event at Woodside (CA, A-6),  Fair Hill International H.T. (MD, A-2)

Tuesday News and Notes:

We’re launching a new reader-driven survey series, so we need your input! Keep an eye out for new questions here in News & Notes — we’re kicking off the series with a survey of what event horses you would like to take a spin on. Click here to take the survey.

Horses, pigs, and sheep spend time at JFK in style. New York’s JFK airport is set to build an air terminal for animals that will rival the amenities of the Ritz. The “ARK” will feature stalls for 70 horses, space for 180 head of cattle, and a luxury resort for your dog. [New York Times]

Straight from the horse’s mouth! A rare collection of paper machè models of horses’ teeth will be featured at the Whipple Museum of the History of Science. 29 models of horse chompers will be on display that were made in the 1800’s. [Horse Talk]

BLM to host public tour of wild horse pastures in Nowata, Oklahoma. Saturday August 1st, the Bureau of Land Management is offering the opportunity to observe 850 mares roaming 5,600 acres located in the Tall Grass Prairie. Reservations must be made by July 30th to attend. [The Horse]

Is your horse trailer fit for action? With money being an issue for most of us, trailers of age are a common occurrence. Make sure your setting your horse up for success when in tow. [Horse Talk]

Tuesday Video Break:

If you hadn’t got your NAJRYC fill this weekend take a look at Area II rider Skyler Decker making the stadium course look easy.


10 Questions with Will Coleman

Will Coleman with his best friend, Chinch. Photo by Jenni Autry. Will Coleman with his best friend, Chinch. Photo by Jenni Autry.

Will Coleman has his sights set on Blenheim in September after being awarded a Land Rover USEF Competition Grant. As he starts gearing OBOS O’Reilly up for the trip to Woodstock England, Will graciously set aside a bit of time to answer some of our questions. Thank you to Will for his time, and thank you for reading!

EN: How is OBOS O’Reilly doing after Rolex Kentucky?

Will: Oboe is doing great. He is looking super as we start gearing back up for the trip to Blenheim.

EN: What was your reaction to hearing you and Oboe had been awarded the Land Rover USEF Competition Grant?

Will: My first reaction was how much I appreciated USEF High Performance and Land Rover for sponsoring this grant and making trips like this possible. I had kind of expected the announcement for myself and Oboe to be awarded the grant, since the horse has had some really good runs in the recent past.

I was also incredibly thankful and happy for my owners. The Four Star Eventing Group is an incredible group of people and for them to get the chance to go and see their horse compete at one of the best three day events in the world is a great thing for them. I think a lot of the owners are planning on making the trip as well, so I am thrilled on their behalf.

EN: How will you prepare OBOS O’Reilly for Blenheim?

Will: OBOS O’Reilly will run the intermediate at Millbrook Horse Trials, then he will run the CIC3* in all likelihood at Richland Park Horse Trials. He is typically to date a very good cross country horse. So most of our preparation is in the little white box.

We will try to get a few marks off his dressage, which is why I spent this past weekend at Dressage at Lexington doing the Third and Fourth Level test. We are going to keep upping the ante on the expectations on the flat work and more than anything getting him in as much atmosphere as possible.

He does get quite hot in that type of atmosphere, and Blenheim will have no shortage of that. Our focus is mainly on that, and keeping him fit and well, but we are only going to give him a couple runs before Blenheim.

Will Coleman and Obos O'Reilly

Will Coleman and OBOS O’Reilly. Photo by Rare Air Photography.

EN: What events are on your competition bucket list?

Will: The one that stands out is one I haven’t been to yet as a competitor: Badminton. I’ve said all along if I had the right horse for Badminton, that it is a must do. It is an event that if it is not the biggest event in our sport, it is certainly one of the three biggest and is the one missing on the ole resume and I would love to have a crack at it.

EN: Whats the best piece of advice you’ve been given?

Will: Before I decided to go professional, I remember sitting down with my dad and telling him that this is what I wanted to do. I remember him saying this very clearly: “Make sure your doing this for the love of the horses and everything that comes with it.”

There is a lot of heartache, financial stress, and its not an easy life. But if you love the horses, and you love every day with them no matter what, and you’re doing it for the horses, you will be a happy person. I remember going to bed that night and thinking about it pretty hard, and I decided that in fact I did.

That’s the best advice I’ve received, because if you never lose sight of that, I believe you can have a very fulfilling life with these animals and in this sport. Katie, my wife, and I try to hold onto that advice every day

EN: If you weren’t riding professionally, what would you be doing?

Will: I like to write. I wouldn’t consider myself a writer by any stretch of the imagination, but I like sitting down and putting thoughts on paper. I’m not sure if I’d be a novelist or a journalist but I think something where I would have to formulate ideas and thoughts into sentences would be something I would be interested in. Its hard to look beyond horses in any way shape or form though.

EN: If you could give advice to an aspiring upper level eventer, what would it be?

Will: I would urge any person that wants to make a go at this, to plant themselves in a program with a Boyd, or a Phillip, or somebody like myself, learn the ins and outs of the sport and business, and stay there for as many years as you can afford to do so. The education gained from being around somebody, their business, their horsemanship, and their management is critical in your career development. You have to commit yourself to this sport because there is so much to learn.

EN: Who was your riding idol growing up?

Will: Mark Todd. I don’t know that there has been a more talented rider than Mark Todd ever. Growing up I wanted to look like him on a horse, I wanted to be able to cross over disciplines like he did. I marveled how he could get on seemingly any horse, any shape and size and make music with it.

Also even nowadays in show jumping, Michel Robert is a bit older now but I still think he is magic on a horse. If I ever come across a video of him riding a horse I take the time to watch. I think Michel is just a genius.

Will Coleman and OBOS O'Reilly. Photo by Rare Air Photography.

Will Coleman and OBOS O’Reilly. Photo by Rare Air Photography.

EN: If you could take a spin on any horse, past or present, who would it be?

Will: I think one of the more incredible horses we didn’t get to see as much as we all wish we could have, Pippa Funnell’s Primmore’s Pride. He was just an incredible animal, could move on the flat, an absolute beast cross country, and then show jumping you could have put them up to 1.40m and he could have popped around. He was a true three sport star. That would be a cool horse to take a spin on, and big enough for me.

EN: What has been your favorite cross country course to date?

Will: My favorites are probably the ones that scared the $#!t out of me the most before I went out on course. I did Burghley in 2003 when Wolfgang Feld was designing, and he built some serious courses.

I did it back on Fox In Flight an he jumped clear with four seconds over time on a 12 minute track. I’ve never seen anything so big and I had a magic round. It was also my first four star and after completing that I felt that if I could jump around that, I could jump around anything. I look back on that as a definite “Welcome to the NFL” moment.

Tuesday News and Notes from Cavalor

Will Coleman and OBOS O'Reilly competing in the Fourth Level Test 1 class Saturday at Dressage at Lexington. Photo by David Taylor. Will Coleman and OBOS O'Reilly competing in the Fourth Level Test 1 class Saturday at Dressage at Lexington. Photo by David Taylor.

There is a lesson to be learned from this past weekend. Always be aware of your surroundings — you never know when an Olympic eventer will ride down center line at a dressage show.

Remember to stalk the show program so you can be at the ready with a camera, or at least a cell phone, to snap a shot of a horse you last saw at Rolex Kentucky.

This past weekend, I got a chance to witness Will Coleman riding at the Virginia Horse Center for something other than an event. Will and his wife, Katie, brought six horses to Dressage at Lexington to show off their sand box skills.

I was able to step away from my wife, who was competing at DAL as well, to catch a glimpse of Will riding OBOS O’Reilly in the Fourth Level Test 1 class on Saturday. All I can say is watch out, Blenheim!

Events Opening Today:  Corona Del Sol Heat Buster Horse Trials (TX, A-5),  Town Hill Farm Horse Trials (CT, A-1),  Moqui Meadows H.T. (CO, A-9),  Chattahoochee Hills H.T. (GA, A-3),  The Event at Woodland Stallion Station(CA, A-6),  KY Classique H.T. (KY, A-8),  Loudoun Hunt Pony Club Fall H.T. (VA, A-2),  Silverwood Farm Fall H.T. (WI, A-4)

Events Closing This Week:  Applewood Farm YEH/FEH & Modified Eventing (NJ, A-2),  Catalpa Corner Charity Horse Trial (IA, A-4), Olney Farm H.T. (MD, A-2),  River Glen Summer H.T. (TN, A-3),  Silverwood Farm Summer H.T. (WI, A-4), Millbrook H.T. (NY, A-1)

News and Notes:

“Warm Up Rio” to mark one year until Olympics in 2016! Aquece Rio gets underway in just 24 days which makes the coming Olympics seem that much closer. Running concurrently with the test event, 16 countries will be sending delegations to Olympic Equestrian Center in Deodoro to take part in the Observers Programme. 12 International Technical Officials along with a large team of National Technical Officials will also be attending the event. This CIC2* will feature a cross country course designed by Pierre Michelet, who was responsible for the WEG track in Normandy last year that will test the field of play. The event allows for testing of many other components including scoring, stabling operations, spectator flow and management, and media operations. [Around The Rings]

Eventers take on jump jockeys at Barbury in JCB Champions Challenge.  A team of four jump jockeys, took a team of four eventers consisting of Andrew Nicholson, Mark Todd, Tina Cook, and Harry Meade in JCB Champions Challenge at Barbury. The jockey’s team edged out the eventers in the final leg of the challenge to be crowned victors, even after a stewards’ inquiry. The purpose of the JCB Champions Challenge is to raise aid for the Injured Jockey Fund. [Barbury International]

Valegro and Totilas to square off at X. Totilas with rider Matthias Alexander Rath have been named to Germany’s team for the European Dressage Championship next month. Setting into motion a show down of epic dressage proportions. Totilas and Valegro have meet before in 2011 and in 2014, where Totilas reigned supreme. With Charlotte Dujardin and Valegro being current world and Olympic champions, the pair may have the momentum to walk away victorious over their German counterparts. Once Valegro and Totilas enter at “A” on August 12th, we will “C” who will exit on a loose reign, fist pumping. [Horse Talk]

Breyers by the truck load are coming to Kentucky Horse Park! Maybe you’re a little girl at heart with a Breyer horse addiction. Maybe you’re realistic about your annual household income and what it truly costs to own a live horse. Either way you don’t need a reason to enjoy BreyerFest at the Kentucky Horse Park. This is the 26th year for this annual festival celebrating all things horses, both in model form as well as 200 guest horses that will be in attendance. The theme for BreyerFest 2015 is “Vive La France” with a limited edition collectible of a French Ardennais Stallion, Simba, included with each three day ticket purchase. The festival lasts 3 days, July 17-19, and is expected to welcome over 10,000 horse lovers. pKentucky Horse Park]

Tuesday Video:

K.C. Cowles and her own Miss Carlisle won the Open Preliminary C division at The Maryland Horse Trials at Loch Moy Farm I this weekend. Check out her winning cross country ride as they tackle the Loch Moy Monster for a beautiful clear round.