Jessica Bortner-Harris
Articles Written 120
Article Views 87,870

Jessica Bortner-Harris


Become an Eventing Nation Blogger

About Jessica Bortner-Harris

Eventing Background

USEA Rider Profile Click to view profile
Area II
Highest Level Competed Advanced/***
Farm Name Rocky Start Stables, LLC
Trainer Bonnie Mosser

Latest Articles Written

Tipperary’s Saturday Links

I think this photo is just funny. This is my mare, Pretty Hip Hop Hotty, at VAHT last weekend.

It’s the weekend, Eventing Nation!  I hope everyone is having plenty of pony time to go around.  I know I am.  This week was a bright light for me, as Bug has finally been given the ok to start walk and trot fitness work!!!  The past two days, I rode him around with a huge grin on my face.  Oh, how I missed sitting on him!  Unfortunately, he has developed a bit of the Thelwell Pony look, so we will be doing a lot of hills to get him back to fighting weight.

Events This Weekend:

IEA Horse Trials, Classic Training & Novice 3-Day Event  [Website] [Entry Status/Ride Times][Live Scores]

The Colorado Horse Park T3D, CCI* & Horse Trials   [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

GMHA June Horse Trials  [Website] [Entry Status/Ride Times][Live Scores]

Poplar Place Farm June HT  [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

Waredaca HT  [Website] [Entry Status/Ride Times]

Genesee Valley Riding & Driving Club HT  [Website] [Entry Status/Ride Times][Live Scores]

Carriage House Farm CT  [Website]

Lost Hounds Horse Trials will be excepting post entries through Sunday, June 9. The fastest and easiest way to enter is through Xentry with a credit card payment. Riders can also send entries with a cashier’s check or money order to the secretary no later than Monday, June 10. Don’t forget to include the $25 late fee with your entry. [Erie Hunt and Saddle Club]

Difficult Run Pony Club is accepting post entries for its horse trials until Friday, June 7. This is DRPC’s biggest fundraiser of the year, so it’s a great opportunity to support Pony Club while competing in a lovely event. All information on late entries is available in the USEA omnibus. [Difficult Run Horse Trials]


Tatts cross-country will challenge 3* horses

Contest aims to capture the thrill of eventing

Riders4Helmets announces International Helmet Awareness Day 2013

Rothchild races to win Grand Prix at Devon

SmartPak is carrying the new Softshell Competition Jacket by Horseware


Elisa Wallace is doing amazing things with her mustangs…again!

Retired Racehorse Training Project: One of the Chosen

Meet my new OTTB mare, Horizontal Love, aka Sexy. The horse I will be using for the RRTP Trainer Makeover.

As many of you know from reading my posts, Thoroughbreds play a  huge role in my life as an eventing trainer and rider.  I am a huge fan of the breed, and I love bringing them along after the track.

This year, the Retired Racehorse Training Project has a new Trainer Makeover going on.  A friend of mine passed along the information and application to me and suggested that I apply.  Low and behold, I was chosen to be one of the 26 trainers.  I am super excited about the opportunity.

I would love for everyone at Eventing Nation to be able to follow along with myself and the other trainers in this showcase of the American Thoroughbred Racehorse.  The trainers range from a 12 year old girl to eventers to hunter/jumpers to western riders.  It should be a great example of the adaptability and work ethic of this great breed.

Here are a few links to specific eventer pages:

My Personal Page

Daniel Clasing

Lara Borson Knight

Alexandra Knowles

Erin Sylvester

Cathy Wieschoff

I think everyone that has been picked is probably as excited as I am.  I have already gotten started by picking my OTTB.  You can read my first blog here!

Tipperary’s Saturday Links

Fortunately there’s no snow at the Virginia Horse Trials this weekend

I made the trip up to the Virginia Horse Trials early this morning so that  I could get the babies ridden and spend the rest of the afternoon volunteering in the show jumping arena.  The wind was blowing and creating a bit of havoc, but I think the idea of jumping outside won’t seem so bad the rest of the weekend.  Mark Donovan designed yet another great test of positive, balanced riding.  Big props to Kurt Martin and Anna Bella for putting in a lovely round in the CIC** that happened to be the only double clear.  Also, a big shout out to Kaitlin Spurlock and Fernhill Select.  Kaitlin rode one of the most beautiful rides of the day on this very talented horse.  They are currently leading the CIC**.

A special announcement to help for Plain Bay Eventing:

Harmony Grove Farm, an eventing farm in Villa Rica, GA, is having a Lellie Ward clinic and an auction to support Plain Bay Eventing June 15th and 16th. They will be auctioning a County saddle, a month’s feed from Cavalor, training packages, and paintings from a local artist.  

Events This Weekend:

Mystic Valley Hunt Club H.T. [Website] [Ride Times PDF]

Virginia Horse CIC2*, CCI1* & H.T. [Website]  [Ride Times]

Flora Lea Spring H.T. [Website] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

Paradise Farm H.T. [Website] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

Corona del Sol Spring H.T. [Website] [Live Scores]

The Spring Event at Woodside [Website] [Live Scores]

May-Daze at the Park H.T. [Website] [Live Scores]

The Event at Galisteo [Website] [Entries]



Oklahoma Strong

Oklahoma horse deaths at 150

Kitty King leads Saumur 3*

Faudree Stands Eighth Following Dressage at Saumur

Ways to Help Plain Bay Eventing

USET Photos from Saumur CCI***

FEI Nations Cup Teams Underway at Houghton

Mitsubishi Motors Badminton Grassroots film

Horse Trials:  Superstars of Eventing in Action at Pontispool

Smartpak is having a Memorial Day Sale!

How to Change a Trailer Tire from Evention:

Tipperary’s Saturday Links

Phillip Dutton and William Penn are leading the CIC*** at CHC International.

This is a big weekend for events all over the country.  I would like to say, “Good luck” to good friend, Hillary Irwin, and her two superstar mares in the CIC* at CHC International this weekend.  It looks like Chatt Hills is once again hosting a fabulous event.

Events This Weekend:

CHC International HT: [Website] [Live Scores]

Otter Creek HT: [Website] [Times][Live Scores]

CCC Spring Gulch HT:  [Website]

Hitching Post Farm HT:  [Website] [Entry Status][Live Scores]

Fair Hill HT:  [Website] [Times][Live Scores]

Greater Dayton HT:  [Website] [Entry Status][Live Scores]

Kelly’s Ford HT:  [Website][Live Scores]

Kent School HT:  [Website] [Entry Status][Live Scores]


Mark Todd Receives Knighting from Prince Charles

Kim Severson Acquires Fernhill Fearless

FEI Issues Yellow Cards to Two Eventers

Olympic Eventers Head for Houghton

Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials Auction Bonanza

Land Rover Burghley Horse Trials Receive Environment Award


Elisa Wallace is at it again!  More Mustangs!


In the meantime…

Forever West all decked out and ready to show jump at WindRidge Farm HT.

I don’t know about everyone else, but I love spring.  Since I moved to North Carolina in 2006, I have not had one real spring.  It is winter, then it is summer.  I am a big fan of the transitional seasons, and I have been missing spring and fall.  The temperatures have been truly spring here.  We keep saying, “Boy, it’s cold for this time of year,” but really, this is what spring is supposed to feel like!  I am using this time to really enjoy my horses and ride as much as I can in these lovely temperatures.  I know the heat of summer is breathing down our necks!

Since I last wrote, I took Bug up to Dr. Kevin Keane, otherwise known as “The Man” in equine veterinary medicine.  Things just weren’t adding up with Bug, and I wanted a second opinion from someone who sees upper level event horses on a regular basis.  Sometimes, it just takes new eyes to see what’s going on.  To make a long story short, after hours of diagnostics, (Bug is very, very stoic and a bit hard to diagnose.) we discovered that Bug definitely needs some minor shoeing changes, but the biggest finding is an active splint!  After a few weeks of thinking there was something major going on, we have found that it is something easily fixable.  Of course, I won’t be 100% relieved until he is 110% sound, but I am definitely feeling a lot less stressed.  We are hoping that Bug will be back competing later in the summer!

In the meantime, I have been doing a lot of riding.  There are quite a few horses at my farm right now, and I am learning so much from every single one.  If you are looking for a humbling experience, start riding greenies on a regular basis!  They will teach you very quickly that you don’t know nearly as much about riding as you think you do.  I love it!  I am using this down time from Bug to try to get as fit and strong as I can.  Heaven knows it takes a lot of energy to get a wiggly green horse around a BN cross country course!

This past weekend, I took two of my greenies to the WindRidge Farm HT in Mooresboro, NC.  This event is one of my favorites for the young horses, as it is super well run, has a laid back atmosphere, and has challenging but friendly courses.  Alicia Henderson always runs a great event, so I was excited to take the babies out.

Forever West and Pretty Hip Hop Hotty with their BN ribbons at WindRidge Farm HT

The first of the greenies is Forever West, a 10 yo Hanoverian gelding by West Coast.  Cole is a strapping boy who was a dressage horse in a former life.  Unfortunately, by the time he got to me, he had acquired some bad habits in his flatwork.  He had never jumped before, to my knowledge, and it was my job to show him the ropes.  Honestly, it has been an interesting trip with him.  He is very different from the OTTBs that I ride, so it is an ongoing education for me.  This weekend at WindRidge, I felt like Cole really started to get it.  I took him out BN back in February to Full Gallop, and I decided that it was just too early.  I went back to the drawing board, and I’m so happy that I did.  He put in a great test for a 27.6 to lead his division.  The show jumping is on a good deal of terrain in the grass, and I am still sorting out the right pace and connection with him, so it was quite a difficult course for us.  (Honestly, it was difficult for a lot of people, as rails were flying in all levels.)  Unfortunately, my riding cost us 2 rails and first place.  However, I was thrilled with him.  He went in there ready to work and was a really good boy.  He went on to jump a double clear on the cross country on Sunday.  I was so happy with him, as I felt him growing up as the weekend and courses went on.  He finished in fourth, and he was quite proud of his ribbon.

The second of my greenies is Pretty Hip Hop Hotty, a 6 yo OTTB mare.  She has been off the track since early last fall, but I gave her quite a bit of time off before putting her to work.  I absolutely love this mare.  She just gives me a great feeling.  She can be an opinionated redhead, but she just gets better and better every time I sit on her.  She gave 110% this weekend, and I was just thrilled.  Hotty was quite muscle bound and body tight when I got her, and her movement just keeps getting better and better.  She went into the dressage arena and just stepped up.  She scored a 35.7 (even getting one 8!), which had me elated.  She still has so much room for improvement, that I know she will be blowing it out of the water in a few more months.  She went on to jump  lovely double clear show jumping and cross country rounds to bring home the 8th place ribbon in her BN division.  For her very first recognized event and her first BN, I think she was pretty darn amazing.

This weekend has reminded me just how much I love this sport at all levels.  Though I’ve been bummed about Bug being out of the competition scene, I have been blessed with these two amazing green horses who have so much to teach me.  I feel like we are learning together, and when Bug comes back, I will be that much better an Advanced rider because of it.  The horses have so much to teach us if we will just listen.  I feel like Rocky Start Stables has quite a line up of great horses, and I am excited to see what is in our future!



Tipperary’s Saturday Links

Andreas Dibowski and Butts Leon at the Badminton Jog. I got to know Butts a bit while he was with Nina Ligon, and I think he's a really cool guy. Photo by Jenni Autry.

The past two weeks have felt like a whirlwind of eventing news.  This weekend, I am enjoying fun with family and friends, as I happen to have a Cinco de Mayo birthday.  The festivities begin with a good ol’ fashion redneck hootinanny.  Of course, I am not really sure what exactly a hootinanny entails, but my husband assures me that it’s what they call a party around here.  I must send out good luck to Samantha Hay and Manny Diemer, who are down strutting their stuff at the Heart of the Carolinas Three Day.

Badminton Links:

[Website] [Ride Times] [Dressage Results]

[Watch Live @ FEI TV]

Events This Weekend: 

Heart of the Carolinas 3-day Event: [Website] [Entry Status][Live Scores}

Weatherford and Greenwood Farm CIC2*, CIC1*, HT: [Website] [Live Scores]

Penny Oaks HT: [Website] [Entry Status]

Riga Meadow CT: [Website]

MCTA HT: [Website] [Entry Status][Live Scores}

Poplar Place May HT: [Website][Live Scores]


OTTBs made CNN news

Bright Horse Communications and Athletux form partnership

Hilary Moore Hebert: Battle Scars

Video of Badminton 2013 Trot Up

Badminton Grass Roots Report

Aussies lead Day One of Badminton

Zoo zebra passes on at age 37

Bill aims to put racing under US Anti-Doping Agency

Para-equestrian, Jo Pitt, passes away at age 34

First ICP Assessment of 2013 still has spots open

2010 Badminton winner, Inonothing, retired

Smartpak Item of the Day:  Equilibrium Massage Pad (I use my religiously, and my horses love it!!)

In Honor of the Heart of the Carolinas, since Badminton is getting all of the coverage….  Footage of last year’s T3Day winner, Bonnie Mosser riding Isbond:

Forget the Battle, Win the War

Bug and I in a lesson with Bonnie Mosser this spring. Photo by Alice VanBokkelen.

I know that I have used this title before, but it just rings true with me.  It seems to most definitely be the theme for Bug and I.  It has been awhile since I have checked in, and I thought I should give everyone that cares an update.

Ever since Southern Pines, we have been dealing with Bug’s foot soreness.  He has gotten a lot better, but he is still not quite right.  In light of this, our spring schedule has been erased.  To the untrained eye, he may look sound, but I know that he isn’t 100%.  He has been enjoying his vacation by antagonizing the other horses over the fence.  We will get through this battle and move on to the next.

So, here I am with all of my plans in the can.  This seems to be a pretty common theme in our sport, and one has to learn to get out the pencil and start over.  For Bug, there is no planning until he gets sorted.  For me, I have two really cool greenies of my own to get out and about, and I have plenty of others to ride in the barn.  When your good horse is out, what do you do?  I plan to ride, ride, ride.  I’m going to use this time to get my position so rock solid that I’m ready to be even better than before when Bug is back.  What better way to get stronger than to ride squirmy babies?  If there’s one thing about babies, they teach you to get strong and tight in the saddle!

Sometimes, it can be hard not to let my mind walk down the road of sadness, but then I remember that so many have been where I am, and they all survived.  Bug will be back to fight again, and I am just so lucky and blessed to have him in my life.  He owes me nothing.  I owe him everything.  I am enjoying our relaxed time together.  There is no pressure right now.  I can stand in his stall and scratch him (which he demands and will even move around to make sure you get the right spot!) and just breath.

We will be back, and we will win the war!

Tipperary’s Cross Country Day Links

The top four placings after dressage at Rolex: William Fox-Pitt in first, Andrew Nicholson holding second and third, and Allie Knowles in fourth.

It’s Rolex cross country day!!  If the rest of Eventing Nation is anything like me, you’ve now watched William Fox-Pitt’s dressage test with Chilli Morning about ten times hoping you will learn by osmosis.  That test was just beautiful.  I hope everyone at Rolex is having a blast.  I think cross country will be a big factor in the standings, so it will be interesting to see how much the scoreboard will shuffle around.

DON’T FORGET! All your Rolex needs will be met by moving your eyes to the right, and a little up, where we have all the links you could ever want. Additionally, the Rolex Guide 2013 will be updated all weekend long with all the information you can handle!

Red on Right, White on Left, Party in the Middle: Join Eventing Nation today at Rolex for our first annual Reader Appreciation Tailgate Party! Festivities include free beer (21 and up), drinks and snacks, plus fun games and EN swag!!!! Look for the red and white cross-country flags in the tailgate section, and stay tuned to EN for more details.


[Website]  [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

[Watch via USEF Network]   [Watch via FEI TV]

Other Events this Weekend:

Fresno County HT: [Website] [Ride Times][Live Scores]

Loudoun Hunt PC HT: [Website] [Ride Times][Live Scores]

University of New Hampshire HT: [Website][Live Scores]


Ice Horse has some exciting announcements coming up that can be found here.

Cavalor will be hosting a lot of fun events this year at Rolex including  a Sip N’ Sign Saturday (today) @5 p.m. with all their sponsored riders attending Rolex! Follow them on Facebook for updates and stop by the Cavalor booth (#06) to see how you can be entered to win $250 by signing up for the Go Clean Challenge!

Tipperary has launched a new vest, which is sure to become one of your favorites! A select group of dealers will be stocking the new Eventer Pro 3015 vest at Rolex and make sure to look out for Jessica Phoenix, Robert Meyerhoff, Lindsay Oaks, Maddie Blackman, Kendal Lehari,  Lynn Symanski, Daniel Clasing, and Shandis McDonald as they’ve opted to wear the new Eventer Pro 3015 at Rolex Kentucky this year (don’t forget to enter the “Snap That” contest, post here)! The new Eventer Pro 3015 has an improved anatomical fit-mobility with patent pending EVOLUTION FOAMTM that conforms to each individual athletes body shape and size. You can find out more about the vest here

Tredstep Ireland will be showcasing their new line of breeches at the Bit of Britain booth this year! The symphony clothing collection is inspired by the extraordinary beauty and precision of symphonic music. So if you’re at Rolex stop by BoB and try them on and feel the music!

Stop by and visit EN sponsor World Equestrian Brands at the VTO booth all weekend long at Rolex! Brought your furry friend? Definitely make sure to stop by and snag a dog treat from WEB!

And don’t forget the Rolex contests:

Top Dog Contest presented by World Equestrian Brands

“Snap That!” Contest presented by Tipperary


Rolex Dressage Recaps

The Chronicle of the Horse: Fox-Pitt Right On Track At Rolex Kentucky

USEA: William Fox-Pitt and Chilli Morning Lead Rolex Kentucky After Stunning Dressage Performance

Boyd’s Blog: Boyd and Oscar in 12th Place After Dressage at Rolex Kentucky CCI4*

An Eventful Life: Libby Live from Rolex Kentucky – Day Two Update


Walk the cross-country course with Bad Eventer and Jon Holling.  Must read!


Smartpak Item of the Day:  Smartpak Deluxe Fly Sheet




Tipperary’s Saturday Links

From EN reader Becky Staden: "Tornado warning at Fair Hill (last night)! Snapped this while course walking with the Stephen Bradley crew."

I can’t believe that a week from now I’ll be at Rolex!  It will be my first time there, and I am super excited.  I’m heading out to a schooling combined test with the baby Novice horses tomorrow, so I’m pretty stoked about that.  It will be my own mini Rolex, I’m sure.  There are a lot of events going on this weekend.  Sending out good vibes and luck to all of my friends competing at Longleaf, River Glen, and Fair Hill!

Events This Weekend:

Fair Hill International HT: [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

Holly Hill Spring HT: [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

Longleaf Pine HT: [Website] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

River Glen Spring HT: [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

Redland Hunt PC HT: [Website] [Entry Status] [Live Scores]

And the Rolex contests begin:


Professional Horseman’s Council recognizes Copper Meadows

Boyd’s groom, Lindsey Taylor, prepares for Rolex

Ludger Beerbaum: China’s part in horse sport’s growth

Cop in donkey costume to line up for marathon

Rags to riches tale for neglected Haggis

Worth the Trust scholarship applications now available

SmartPak Small Hole Hay Net keeps the trailer less messy

SmartPak shows off their Boston spirit


VAHT Introduces New Course Design


The Virginia Horse Trials is one of my favorite events of the year. Brian and Penny Ross always do an excellent job of organizing this amazing event. The courses are always great, and the Virginia Horse Center is a beautiful facility. Their spring horse trial is coming up quickly on May 23-26. The opening date was April 9, but you have until May 7 to get your entries in! They are hosting Beginner Novice through Intermediate on the national level and a CIC** and CCI* at the FEI level.

Brian and Penny wanted to send out an update on things:

“Penny and I have made the executive decision to move the show jumping outdoors for May. The arena up on the hill is larger and has natural seating around it. We recognize that there are some eventers who don’t come to us because of the intimidating factor that the indoor coliseum has on them and their horses. The warm up will be in the adjacent enclosed arena. We are also very excited that Marc Donovan has agreed to design the courses for us.

“All four dressage arenas will therefore be in the lower arenas, including quite possibly one of them in the coliseum. If we do use the coliseum for dressage, there will be several times allotted for familiarization.

“More news is that after 10 years of design, David O’Connor has stepped aside because of other commitments, and we have hired John Williams for the FEI levels. He and one of our builders, Tyson Rementer, have spent the last week moving earth and laying out the courses. There are some major differences, and we are very excited about the new courses. About the only thing that stays the same from last year are the start box and the first two fences. From that point on, John has let his skills as a designer take over. He has spent an entire week on site tweaking here and there to give the horses and riders a truly educational and fun ride around the Virginia Horse Center.

“Lastly, November 2013 will be our 25th anniversary of organizing here, and we are making plans for a very special event!”

I, for one, am very excited about VAHT this year, and I hope everyone will get their entries in! It always proves to be a great weekend.

The Working Student Search from both sides

Classic Skyline having a nice roll this winter. He's owned by my working student, Alice VanBokkelen. Photo by her as well.

We have had a lot of blogs from working students here on EN.  Working students are an integral part of the eventing community.  Without them, a lot of work would be left undone, and  a lot of riders would miss out on very important education.  Being an up and coming professional, I have started to search for working students of my own.  It is a daunting task, as one must find the person that fits your opening the best.  Not all working student positions are the same, and they can vary greatly from farm to farm.

If you are searching for a working student, it is important to make the job description as in depth as you can.  Of course, I had assumed that with a working student position, there is a lot of work involved.  However, you would surprised at the number of applicants that are totally turned off by having to muck stalls.  This was a great surprise to me.  Also, be sure to include the level of rider you would prefer.  If it’s a job with a lot of unsupervised riding, one doesn’t want beginner riders to apply.

The job description must also make it very clear what the person will get if they work for you.  For instance, I offer board for one horse, housing, and lessons.   There is no pay involved, but there is no charge either.  There are many different packages out there.  Some places charge for certain things, while others will even pay a stipend.  Personally, I think if pay is involved, it’s not really a working student position, it’s a paid position.

On the applicant’s side, be very honest about what you can and will do.  Most working student positions are A LOT of work and require a 6 day work week.  Most professionals keep a 6 or 7 day work week themselves, and they expect their help to keep up.  Every position varies a bit, so be sure that you know what you’re getting into.

The riding part of the position is probably the biggest liability for professionals.  When applying for a position, include some of your show history, references to trainers, and even video of you riding.  It is better for a good match to be made from the beginning, rather than getting there and things going awry.  I am big on checking references, and it is always nice to see some video.  A trial ride is not always possible when people are coming from far away.

Be sure to do the research on where you are applying.  Not only do you want to have an idea of whom you are going to work for, but you need to know where the facility is located.  There is nothing more irritating than thinking you have someone lined up to come, and they contact you to say it’s just too far to move.  I would think that location is the first thing you look into.

Know what you need in order to make the position work for you.  If you are not in a position to work without pay, then a working student position is probably not for you.

If you are searching as an employer or an employee to be, there are a few sources that work well.  Social media is a great, free way to find help or a job.  There are a lot of free group areas on Facebook that allow posting for these things.  Also, Yard and Groom and Sport Horse Nation are other great places to find workers and positions.

All in all, this process is tough on both sides of the situation.  The best advice for both parties is to be as honest and up front about things as possible.  No matter how hard you try to find the right fit, there will still be matches that just don’t work.  However, if you approach the situation as best as you can, you should have better luck in the end.  Don’t give up!



Tipperary’s Saturday Links

Mr. Lincoln, my retired old man, enjoying his life as a free range lawn mower. Photo by Alice VanBokkelen


I don’t know about everywhere else, but the weather here in NC has finally hit spring.  The grass is bright green, the sun is out, the horses are covered in mud.  Yup, must be spring!  This weekend, I will be at the FENCE Horse Trials coaching some students and soaking up the sun.  I hope everyone gets to enjoy a weekend full of sunshine and ponies!

Events This Weekend:

Ocala Horse Properties CCI* & CCI2*: [Website] [Live Scores]

Twin Rivers Spring Three Day & HT: [Website] [Entry Status] [Live Scores]

FENCE HT: [Website] [Entry Status] [Live Scores]

Plantation Field HT: [Website] [Entry Status] [Live Scores]

Pine Hill Spring HT: [Website] [Entry Status]

St Johns HT: [Website] [Entry Status] [Live Scores]


Animals self medicate

Bumper broadcast of Badminton scheduled

Olympians and royalty to reign at Belton Horse Trials

Boyd is teaching at Fitch’s Corner on Memorial Day

Purpose that Defines Us, Purpose that Binds Us

International equestrians unite as FEI Solidarity Ambassadors

Brothers from Another Mother


From our friends at FLAIR:

Tipperary’s Saturday Links

Phillip Dutton and Mighty Nice, the current leaders of the CIC*** at The Fork. Photo by Jenni Autry.

I have been keeping up with The Fork results, thanks to our great crew reporting.  We are still getting Bug sorted out, and I am recovering from a horrible bout of food poisoning.  Ugh.  I guess if I have to be stuck on the couch most of the time, at least I have some good eventing reporting to keep me busy!

Events This Weekend:

The Fork HT: [Website] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

Sporting Days Farm HT: [Website] [Ride Times/Entry Status]

CDCTA Spring HT: [Website] [Ride Times/Entry Status]

Chattahoochee Hills HT: [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times]

Spring Bay HT: [Website] [Ride Times/Entry Status]

FLAIR’s Rolex tickets contest: We had 136 qualified entries. Thank you to all who joined in the fun! Congratulations to the following winning entries! (Each entry number below was drawn by’s random number generator.)

  •  Jess Hill’s #65 entry was drawn for one (1) set of three day passes – FRI, SAT, SUN!
  •  Trish Bosch’s #32 entry was drawn for one (1) set of three day passes – FRI, SAT, SUN!
  •  Tracy McPherson’s #78 Pinterest-shared entry was drawn for one (1) SAT XC Pass!
  •  Courtney Welle’s #66 entry was drawn for one (1) SAT XC Pass!
  •  Britney Hensman’s #50 Twitter-shared entry was drawn for one (1) SAT XC Pass!
  •  Heather Mason’s #129 entry was drawn for one (1) SAT XC Pass!

IMPORTANT: Winning entries must respond to the email they received from [email protected] to finalize the entry. If their response is not received by 9 a.m. CST (10 EST) Saturday, April 6, 2013, their entry will be void and another name will be drawn.


N.J. farm quarantined after EHV-1 outbreak

Derelict British pub to become riding centre

Death at Aintree on day two of Grand National

Bomb strapped to donkey kills four in Afghanistan

Register today for the CCI* at the Colorado Horse Park

Farewell to Pippa Funnell’s Supreme Rock

Buckeye Nutrition Hosts Online Equine Expressions Contest

Love my ThinLine Sheepskin Comfort Pad — check it out at SmartPak!

Tipperary’s Saturday Links

Owner's Course Walk at Galway Downs with David O'Connor. Photo via USEF Eventing High Performance FB page.

Happy Easter weekend, Eventing Nation!  I hope everyone is enjoying their families this weekend, both human and equine (and canine and feline too!).  I am in PA for a clinic, so I get the pleasure of seeing my parents and good friends from home.  I hope everyone has a great weekend full of warm weather!

Events This Weekend:

Galway Downs International HT: [Website] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

Full Gallop HT: [Website] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

Rocking Horse Spring HT:  [Website] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

Morven Park Spring HT: [Website] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

Texas Rose Horse Park HT: [Website] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]


Beautiful multi-million dollar horse farm up for auction  (Let me know if anyone wants to buy this for me!)

Minneapolis police horse, Wrangler, is retiring

Uthopia and Valegro updates

USEA Official Podcast: Horsemanship Seminars with Max Corcoran

Horse owners urged to help prevent disease

World Champion eventer, Bounce, dies at age 30

Canada slams new Olympic qualifying proposal

Tipperary Sportage helmet are very popular in the eventing world.  Check them out at Smartpak!

No Hoof, No Horse

Bug's good looking legs and hooves. Photo by

This past weekend marked a year since I made the big move up to Advanced with Bug.  I was all excited to get out there and tackle the tough Southern Pines XC.  Unfortunately, Bug was a bit foot sore this weekend, and I decided it was in his best interest to withdraw.  There’s always another show, but there is only one Bug.

The weather this winter seems to just be wreaking havoc on hooves.  I have had quite a few horses on the farm with thrush, bruises and abscesses.  We have had a ton of rain, and it seems that whenever the ground starts to dry, the skies open up and pour down on us again.

It is amazing the amount of products that are out there for hooves, but as the old saying goes, “No hoof, no horse.”  Hooves change so much depending on the moisture levels, that you can’t just use one product to keep a healthy hoof.  There are products to moisturize when the conditions are dry, products to toughen the hooves when the conditions are wet, products to assist in hoof growth, and products to just make them look pretty.  It can all be very overwhelming to any horse owner.

At the upper levels, it becomes even more imperative to have your horse’s hooves just right.  I have my Farrier’s Barrier for wet conditions, Sole Pack Ointment for dry conditions, and Thrush Buster and Kopertox for thrush that just won’t quit.  Keeping my kids’ hooves healthy (among everything else!) is certainly a priority.

Of course, nutrition also plays a huge role in hoof consistency.  Again, there are so many hoof supplements on the market, it is tough to decide which one is best.  Bug has SmartHoof Pellets in his Smartpaks, and so far, I have been happy with the results.

How your horse is shod is yet another thing to consider when dealing with hoof issues.  Bug has always been shod in regular steel shoes, but I think, in light of all that has been going on, he may get some pads to help eliminate his bruising issues.  Every time you add something, though, you have to consider how it will effect how your horse goes.  Will they have the same grip on the ground?  Will it change their hoof angle?  Will it actually add more pressure to the sole of their foot?  There are just so many things to consider!

So, EN, what are some of your favorite hoof and shoeing products??

Tipperary’s Saturday Links

My handsome boy in the dressage at SP2. Photo by Lauren Kennedy.


Today kicked off the Southern Pines II Horse Trials.  The high was around 55, and the skies were blue.  It wasn’t as warm as is customary here, but it was better than what they are calling for in the next two days.  I have to send a huge thanks to fellow EN writer, Kate Samuels, for not running me over on the cross country course.  I may or may not have walked right in front of her has she was galloping around the Training.  I was so focused on walking my Advanced course, I didn’t hear her coming!  I think her little mare must be super light on her feet!

Events This Weekend:

Poplar Place HT: [Website] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]

Southern Pines HT: [Website] [Ride Times] [Live Scores]


The USPC Inter-Pacific Eventing Exchange Team is raising funds to support a two-week trip to Australia to compete against teams from the U.S., Canada, Hong Kong/China, Australia and New Zealand. Look for the team’s silent auctions at The Fork, Rolex and Chattahoochee Hills. [Facebook] [Blog] [Donations]

The EDCTSA (Eastern Dressage & Combined Training Schooling Association) benefit show is being held on Sat June 15th at Cottonwood Farm in Vanceboro, NC. Our show will be offering dressage tests, western dressage, dressage equitation, Prix Caprilli tests, Combined Tests up to Novice Level, a Gambler’s Choice and Sport Horse Versatility classes. This is their big fundraiser for the year which goes towards EOY awards as well as different scholarships for both juniors and AA to further their dressage and/or eventing education.  Contact Beth Bengala for more information at [email protected]


Andromaque is the Queen of Southern Pines

Equine Einsteins given a chance to shine

Black Caviar wins 24th consecutive race

Jennie B is checking off the boxes and counting down the days

Lauren Sprieser’s latest blog

Get your Win the War swag here!

British frangible pin approved by the FEI

Researchers develop test to gauge concussion severity

New show jumping Hall of Fame inductees anounced

Love the SmartDigest Ultra.  Check it out!


Hillcrest Farm Spring Schooling Horse Trials

The Master of the show, Janet Cagle. She is often buzzing around in her golf cart and is also the show jumping judge! Photo courtesy of Pixel Pony Photography.

Spring is in the air.  Not only are the recognized events in full swing, but it is time for the schooling shows to really start rolling.  I love taking my young horses and my students to schooling shows to hone their skills. The lower levels are what fuels our great sport, and I think it is important to show love whenever we can!

My working student, Alice Van Bokkelen, and Classic Skyline in the BN. Photo courtesy of Pixel Pony Photography

Hillcrest Farm is one of the many options of places to go here in North Carolina.  It is owned by Janet and Dan Cagle and located in Mocksville, NC.  Janet runs the show by herself and puts a lot of work into getting things ready.  This past Saturday, March 16th, Hillcrest had their spring schooling horse trial.  The day was packed full of horses and riders with 60 entries.  Divisions from Training down through Green Bean were offered.  The cross country and show jumping  are always well planned and fair for the levels.  The atmosphere is always one of fun and relaxation.  There are smiles all around, and people really seem to be having a lot of fun.

Sarah Meyers and D'Grimace were the only Training pair to compete. Photo courtesy of Pixel Pony Photography.

This year, Strouse House Feed and Tackle, was there handing out goody bags of Blue Seal feed, and they also donated prizes for everyone that won their division.  This was a very cool addition to the show.  The Yadkin Valley Hounds Pony Club was there with concessions that looked and smelled amazing.   Unfortunately, with my Fit & Feisty for 2013 Plan, I didn’t get to partake of their yummy goodies!

Sammi Majors and her OTTB, Dunwoody, in the BN. Photo courtesy of Pixel Pony Photography.

Here are the top 3 from each division:


1: Sarah Meyers and D’Grimace -72.3


1:  Hillary Irwin and Pray for You -27

2:  Erin Wilson and Houston – 32.5  (This horse is in his twenties and looks fabulous!  He really loves his job.)

3:  Ashley Godfry and Anastasia- 40

Beginner Novice

1:  Carley Goodnoe and Woodlands Sampson- 27.5

2:  Cindy McNeely and Hurricane Breeze-28.5

3:  Heather Mercer and Flojo’s Ultimator- 29.53


1:  Amelia Lowe and Imma Rockstar- 35

2:  Sydney Davis and The Golden Snitch – 37.5

3:  Elizabeth George and It’s Trouble Time- 37.5

4:  Hanna Melchor and Scotch Bar Willy – 37.5  (this three way tie was broken with XC time)

Green Bean

1:  Heather King and CF Baltic King – 30

2:  Georgia Ranson and Little Willy – 36.83

3:  Jessica Bortner-Harris and PrettyHippHopHotty – 38.2

Katie Hayes and Schuyler in the Green Bean. Everyone was adoring over this pony all day. So cute!! Photo courtesy of Pixel Pony Photography.


All in all, the day ran very smoothly with a lot of lovely horse and rider combinations.  A HUGE thanks to Janet and Dan Cagle for providing such a great learning experience for horses and riders.

Hanna Melchor and Scotch Bar Willy in the Maiden division. Photo courtesy of Pixel Pony Photography.




Tipperary’s Saturday Links

Hillary Irwin and Danehill Sunset staying warm before lessons with Bonnie Mosser. Photo by Alice Van Bokkelen


Only here in the mountains of North Carolina could we have 60 degrees one day, snow flurries the next, and back to 60 degrees.  March weather is crazy here, but I am looking forward to the milder temperatures and better riding weather.  Bug and I enjoyed a lovely gallop today in the sun and spring breeze.  I hope everyone eventing this weekend is blessed with great weather!


Events This Weekend:

Feather Creek Farm HT: [Website] [Ride Times]

The Event at 3 Day Ranch: [Website]

Copper Meadows HT: [Website] [Ride Times]

Pine Top Spring HT: [Website] [Ride Times]


No Good Evidence that Helmets Prevent Concussion

USEA YEH Seminar to be held in Ocala

Lenamore retires at age 20

Immediate position open at the USEA

Effectiveness of Hendra vaccine shown in trial

Eventing stalwart Frances Kinsey dies

Parenting Lesson #2 Learned from My Horse

BE increases Targeted National Competitions

Big donations made for EHV research

Southern Pines I Open Prelim winners, Hillary Irwin and May Day:

The Crazy Rantings of a Road Warrior


I live life like a gypsy most of the time.  Between horse shows and all of my teaching, I do A LOT of driving.  I feel like Wyatt (my awesome truck) and I are attached at the…er…butt.  Having driven up and down the East Coast (and once to Canada!), I have decided that there are a few rules that the other cars on the road need to follow.  We talk a lot about trailer safety, but no matter how safe we try to make things for our horses during trailering, a lot of their safety lies in the hands of other drivers.  There’s only so much you can do.  Here are my few rules:

1.  That space that I’m leaving between my big rig and the car in front of me is not meant for you to dodge into.

2.  Yes, I passed a car.  Please give me time to put on my blinker and move back into the right hand lane before you dodge into it to pass me.

3.  Just because I am a truck and trailer does not mean that I can’t go the speed limit or faster.  Please allow me over into the left lane so that I can pass the bus with its four ways on too.

4.  If I stop quickly, the front bumper of your BMW is going to be under my horse’s butt.  Please refrain from tailgating.

5.  Hanging out in my blind spot is not a good idea.  I am bigger.  I will win.

6.  Passing me and then getting in front of me going under the speed limit will force me to pass you again.  I do not enjoy playing leap frog on the highway.

7.  Pulling out in front of me because you think I’m going to go too slowly is just not cool.  Causing me to slam on my brakes and upsetting the horses causes me much distress.  You never know when I won’t be able to stop and the bumper of my Super Duty will be in your back seat.

8.  Yield on green for a left turn applies to everyone.  Trying to dart in front of the truck and trailer because you think I’m slow is not a wise decision.  Once again, you may find the front bumper of my Super Duty in your car.

9.  Beeping your horn and flipping me off because you made bad driving decisions just doesn’t intimidate me.

10.   If you are at a gas station with diesel pumps mixed in with the gas pumps, please try not to block the diesel if there are other places you can pump gas.  I will just end up blocking everything and causing a royal traffic jam.

These are just a few of my favorite rules.  Please try to be cautious when driving around rigs.  We are carrying precious cargo.

Tipperary’s Saturday Links

Kaitlin Spurlock and Expedience in the CIC*** at Red Hills. Photo via Phillip Dutton's FB page.

Red Hills seems to be the big place to be this weekend, but there are some other events going on as well.  I have some friends competing at Southern Pines I this weekend.  Good luck Jordan, Hillary, Samantha, Margaux, and Clark!!  I am at home riding ponies, enjoying the sun, and taking care of my injured superstar.  I must say, this abscess debacle has made the EHV worry a lot easier on me this weekend.

Events This Weekend:

Red Hills International  [Website] [Ride Times] [Results]

Full Gallop [Website] [Entry Status] [Results]

Southern Pines I [Website] [Entry Status]

Flintridge [Website]

Natalie Rooney and Four Star Farm at the Woodland Stallion Station, in Woodland, CA writes Dr. Maren Engelhardt (from Germany) and I are hosting another amazing Trakehner event, “Trakehner Rendezvoux, The Sky’s the limit!” You won’t want to miss it! We will be showcasing the newly approved Virginian Sky (currently eventing at Preliminary) as well as presenting 8 FABULOUS trakehners for sale!  Maren will also give one of her amazing talks on the subject of Shagya blood in our performance horses!  March 9th, 1-5:30 pm at Four Star Farm’s new facility in Woodland CA. Please come! Enjoy the wonderful horses and FREE food and wine!!


Check out this beautiful mare.  She is free to a good home, as her owner is very ill.

Video of Leslie Brendl and Uminco winners of the FEI Advanced Single Horse Division of Combined Driving

Will Faudree has a new website

Pictures of the dressage from the CIC*** at Red Hills today.

USEF plans Town Hall Meeting to discuss medication and treatment of sport horses

Lucinda Fredericks injured in fall at Tweseldown

Pint Sized Prelim Debutante

Mine That Bird movie out this year

Rachael Alexandra has another operation


Video Throwback to 2012.  Peter Atkins and HJ Hampton Helmet Cam:


Forget the Battle, Win the War 2013

Win the War and I tackling one of the big gallop fences at Pine Top. Photo taken by Hoofclix and used with their permission.

For those of you who are new to EN, I wrote a series of articles last year about the progress of my horse, Win the War (Jitterbug/Bug), and I through our first year at Advanced together.  There were some amazing ups and some not so amazing downs, but we came through 2012 a lot stronger and more knowledgeable.  My coach is the amazing Bonnie Mosser, and I couldn’t have done it all without her.

It has been awhile since I have written any real updates on Bug and I, so I thought it might be appropriate, now that 2013 is in full swing.  Due to Bug’s minor stone bruise at Fair Hill, thus sending us home before we ever got started, we got a jump on our winter training.  I feel like we are the most ahead that we have ever been in the spring.  We spent a lot of time just working on our dressage, and I think it is really starting to pay off.   Any jumping issues that we have had have all been my fault, so I have been working hard to stay disciplined.

Bonnie knows exactly how hard to push me without pushing me over the edge.  She is so insightful and sees the small things that make big results.  She is not only teaching me how to ride, but she is teaching me about our sport.  There is so much more to eventing than just riding.  As riders, we tend to just focus on our riding, but we need to be watching and absorbing and learning.  “Knowing is half the battle.”  (My husband’s favorite G.I. Joe quote, and since we’re on war theme, I found it appropriate.)

Bug rocking the Intermediate show jumping at Full Gallop. Photo by Amelia Lowe.

Bug and I started the season off by running the Intermediate at Full Gallop the end of January.  He was quite fresh for the dressage, but he jumped well in both show jumping and cross country.  At that point, I was still really trying to find a good rhythm and riding style on the cross country.  For that round, I really tried to let him gallop around happily without having to take a tug.  We had some time penalties, but on the whole, it was a nice round.  We finished 2nd, and I was very pleased with my boy.

Starting to year off right!

Our next outing took us back to Full Gallop to run the Advanced/Intermediate for their Wednesday show.  Again, Bug was quite fresh for his dressage.  Both shows, our dressage was before 8 am and the temperature was below freezing.  He went on to jump a lovely double clear show jump round.  Our cross country had some ups and downs.  I couldn’t seem to find my rhythm for a lot of it, so we had some fences that I would have liked to do over.  We got around clean and with less time than the show before, but I was kicking myself for not really finding my mojo.  However, we did end up winning the division, which always brings a smile to Bug’s face.  He didn’t care how badly I rode, he got the job done with or without me.

Photo by Alice Van Bokkelen

In mid-February, I got to ride with David O’Connor in the ICP Symposium.  The morning that I left Ocala, I had a dressage lesson with the amazing Linda Zang.  She gave me some great tips for getting Bug more up in front of me, and I couldn’t wait to try it out at Pine Top that weekend.

Pine Top was to be our first Advanced of the season.  It would be the first time I had run Advanced since the Bromont debacle of last year.  I knew that we were more prepared than we have ever been, and with  my amazing coach there to keep me focused, I was ready to get to the big stuff.  Bug felt great in the dressage, even with the rain and muck.  He was listening to me and quite obedient.  Did I leave points on the table?  Yes.  Did I feel like it was the best test we have had?  Yes.  We had some very lovely moments, even scoring a few 8’s!  I don’t think I had one comment of “on the forehand” in the whole test.  There is still much work to be done to be competitive, but I was very happy with our progress.

The cross country looked like a great course, and I was excited to try out my new galloping position from DOC.  I normally struggle with the gallop fences, as I slow down too much and then rush his last few steps.  However, this time, I felt my fly fences all rode really straight (one of my issues is to let Bug drift in the air) and fluid.  I was thrilled with how much more balanced I was.  Bug was even jumping better!  (As if he needed to get more air than he already does.)  I had really great rides at some of the combinations as well, but there were a few that I just didn’t attack enough.  I sat there as a passenger instead of telling him what I wanted.  Again, my fail.  But, Bug answered the questions with or without me.  Due to this, we had more time penalties than we should have.  It was not a horrible round, it just had some places where I should have been more aggressive.

The show jumping was a big course with terrain, and a lot of rails were flying.  Bonnie stressed to me that I needed to attack the course the way I should have attacked some of my combinations the day before on cross-country.  The course rode forward, and I needed to keep going.  It was one of the best show jump rounds I have ever ridden.  Bonnie was very happy with how I rode.  Unfortunately, Bug barely touched the front rail of fence 3, and we had one down.  This is very uncharacteristic of him, but a lot of people were having that rail, and he just wasn’t quite snappy enough with his front end.  Of course, this meant that he jumped extra high for the rest of the round.   We finished in 9th out of a pretty big division, and I am very happy with our first Advanced outing of 2013.

We were supposed to head back to Full Gallop this weekend to run the Advanced/Intermediate again, but poor Bug has popped a small abscess (it’s no wonder with all of the mud!).  I am going to focus on getting him back to 100% and then, hopefully, we’ll be headed to Southern Pines II for the Advanced.

Our theme for 2013 is “Forget the Battle, Win the War.”  Our big goal is to be on the gold medal team for the WEG 2014.  I say “gold medal team” because:  A. Assuming our country will do any less is already losing the war, and B. One shouldn’t just want to make the team, they should want to bring home the gold.  That being said, we have A LOT of work to do before then.  I know there are some amazing horses and riders in this country.  I also know that I am sitting on one of the best horses in the country.

Fundraiser Bumper Stickers for 2013.

Each season is a stepping stone toward our big goal in 2014.  This spring season our goal is the CCI*** at Jersey Fresh in May.  Being an up and coming rider that owns all of my own horses, I am constantly struggling to make ends meet and getting Bug everything he needs to be 110% happy.  With this in mind, I have decided to continue my t-shirt fundraising each season.  Also, I have been asked to add a bumper sticker to the works.  If anyone is interested in buying a t-shirt or bumper sticker, you can do so by ordering through PayPal on my website or you can send me a check or money order to my farm address.  I will be taking orders through April 15th, and the items will be shipped after that.  Bumper stickers will actually be “Buy One, Get One” as we could not figure out how to make the PayPal button charge you $5 shipping for every sticker.  I GREATLY APPRECIATE any orders. Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions at [email protected]

The Spring Tour 2013 Fundraiser T-Shirt.

I want to thank everyone for all of the support and kind words that I have gotten over the past year.  It boggles my mind just how many fans my amazing horse has!  Bug is truly a once in a lifetime horse, and I am so blessed to have him.  If you ever see us at an event, don’t hesitate to come up and say hello and give him a pat!  He would expect no less.



The One That Started It All: Florestan du Serin

Every horse that we ride has a lot to teach us.  The longer we ride, the more we can pick out skills that specific horses have taught us along the way.  However, there is always one horse that starts it all for us.  The one that teaches about riding and makes us into the rider we are today.  This new series is going to tell the stories of the horses that started it all.  This week, I got to chat with Josh Barnacle about his first Advanced horse, Florestan du Serin.  Photos are used with Josh’s permission.

Josh Barnacle and Florestan du Serin rocking around the CCI*** at Fairhill

Californian Josh Barnacle’s aunt, Janet White, was his long time supporter and horse owner.  Thanks to her help, Josh acquired Florestan du Serin from a pig farm in France.  Flo Flo, as he was lovingly called, helped Josh complete his first Advanced at the age of 17.  This big French horse didn’t look the part of an event horse as he stood in the field, but he ate up cross country courses like they were nothing.

At 15, Josh and his aunt Janet set off to France on a whirlwind horse shopping trip.  They saw many horses during their trip, but the big bay in Sebastian Chemin’s field caught their eye.  At 9 years old, Flo Flo was older than they wanted, but there was just something about this 17.1 hand horse that caught their eye.  He hadn’t done much in France besides some jumper shows, but Flo would prove to be a cross country horse to be reckoned with.

Upon his arrival in the states, Josh set to work with his then coach, Yves Sauvignon, to get Flo ready to event.  They did their first Training level event together at OakRidge Training Stables.  Flo had a beautiful, floaty trot that was jaw dropping, and though his canter wasn’t quite as breathtaking, he still managed to eat up a cross country course.  That summer, Josh and Flo moved up to Prelim at Woodside.   Janet White had to say of Flo:

“The first glimpse of a creature in love with xc presented itself-not on the xc course but on an unruly hand walk around the property. Getting his first glimpse of the xc course, he puffed up bigger than his 17.1 self and just ignored any human around him. As each event came and was completed, and the jumps got bigger and increasingly difficulty, Flo became harder to handle on the ground at the shows. So began our search for places to walk him on the competition grounds where he could not see a xc course.”

That fall, Josh and Flo did their first CCI* together at Galway Downs.  There were 60 horses in the division, and 15 year old Josh and Flo finished second.  That was when Josh realized what an amazing horse he had brought back from that pig field in France.

Again at OakRidge, Josh and Flo moved up to Intermediate the following spring and went on to do a CCI** at Galway.  Flo and Josh were a great team and ended up moving up to Advanced at Copper Meadows.  Josh was 17, and Flo had taught him a lot.  Unfortunately, during the XC, Flo tried to bounce the one stride of the sunken road, and catapulted Josh out of the tack.  Their first Advanced outing didn’t go so well.  The next Advanced outing, however, went well, and Josh decided to come to the East Coast that fall and attempt the CCI*** at Fairhill.

Unfortunately, during a quick trip from the farm in the East Coast to go somewhere close, Flo ended up over the divider in the horse trailer, fracturing both splint bones on a hind leg and causing a lot of trauma to his hind end.  Disheartened, Josh and Flo made the trip back to California where Flo had both splint bones removed and began the road back to health.

Flo’s career was riddled with injury.  He seemed to be pretty accident prone, and for a big warmblood, the injuries really ate into his conditioning program.  He was a tough guy, though, and he always seemed to pull through things.  Tendon lesions, open wounds, fractured bones all seemed to make an appearance in his career, but Flo kept coming back and wanting to continue his career.

In 2005, after his trailer debacle, he went on to complete 4 events and win the last long format CCI** in the US.  After that, there was more time off and ups and downs.  Finally, in 2008, Flo was back in action and the goal was to shoot for Fairhill.  This time, after many more ups and downs, they finally made it.  Flo finished 29th out of a huge field, and Josh finally got to complete his first CCI***.

Flo is retired from upper level competition.  He took a few young riders around, and actually won the JYOP with a young rider last summer at Woodside.  He hangs out at Janet’s place and loves life.  He seems to miss being a big event horse, but he also enjoys taking Janet for hacks through the vineyards.

Flo taught Josh everything there is to know about upper level competition.  The ups and downs that horses tend to bring, and the bond that you share with them.  The horses become so much more forgiving of your mistakes when the bond is there.  Josh says that he learns something from every horse that he sits on, but Flo Flo taught him more than any of them.


Tipperary’s Saturday Links

How you doin? My stallion enjoying one of the sunny days that we had this week. Spring can't come fast enough!

With the EHV-1 scare, I hope everyone is taking the time to take their horses’ temps daily if they have been traveling.  There’s nothing like a good outbreak to keep us all on our toes.  If you are planning to go to any shows, make sure you know what protocols the venues are following, as you might need a health certificate within 72 hours.

Events This Weekend:

Rocking Horse HT: [Website] [Ride Times]

Sporting Days HT: [Website] [Ride Times]

Twin Rivers HT: [Website] [Ride Times]

Meadow Creek HT: [Website]


USEA Area IV Silent Auction

A horse in Quebec euthanized after testing positive for the neurologic strain of EHV-1

Smartpak gives advice on keeping weight on horses in winter

COTH tells Holly Payne’s injury story

Cowboy actor Dale Robertson dies at 89

Moonwalking Shetland pony featured in British commercial

The Carolina Horse Park is implementing EHV-1 Protocol

Cases of EHV-1 in Canada, Utah, and New Jersey

Tracie Robinson, Olympic eventing dressage coach, banned for drunk driving

ICP Symposium Show jumping with Yogi Breisner, Training Level