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Tilly Berendt

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Sport Horse Nation Spotlight: Ten Tantalising TBs

In the market for a new four-legged partner? You may find your unicorn on our sister site, Sport Horse Nation. To help with the search, we’re going to feature a selection of current listings here on EN. We include the ad copy provided; click the links for videos, pricing and contact information.

There’s nothing that lights my fire quite like a good Thoroughbred, and I know I’m not alone in harbouring a not-so-little obsession with these kind, endlessly generous, talented athletes. Luckily for all of us, particularly in this crazy market, Sport Horse Nation has plenty of excellent examples of the breed advertised at the moment, whether you’re looking for a project or an established partner to take you to new heights. There’s even a potential lease opportunity in there, which is never easy to find! Here are ten that caught my eye while I was writing my Christmas wishlist today…

Talented 2014 TB Event Horse

TEMPTER – Chestnut 2014 Thoroughbred gelding by Speightstown, over 16.2 hands. This elegant horse is well schooled and responsive to the aids. He has done several Starter events, and is ready to climb through the levels. (He won his last outing, finishing on his 25.8 dressage score.) He has an uphill balance, good movement, and a bold athletic jump. He is straightforward and easy to ride, and ready to begin his serious competition career. Suitable for an ambitious amateur or Young Rider with some experience. $18.500.

We also have many other excellent horses available, from green prospects to experienced Eventers. We can also help you sell your horse. Visit www.teamwindchase.com/forsale.htm for more info. Phyllis Dawson, Windchase, Hillsboro, VA E-mail: [email protected] Phone: (540) 454-3834 cell, (540) 668-6024 stable, (540) 668-6548 home.

Lovely 2016 thoroughbred gelding ready to take on the 2022 eventing season!

Overwork aka Leon is a 5 year old 16hh thoroughbred gelding with a kind disposition and incredible talent. He has 3 great gaits that have mistaken him for a Warmblood and a powerful jump.

Leon is very honest and has competed beginner novice and will easily move up the levels in the right hands. He is sensitive to the aids and has an incredible work ethic. Snatch him up and have an awesome athlete to compete in 2022!

Competitive 3* Packer with Advanced Miles

For Sale- “Capability Brown”

Capability Brown is sadly offered for sale, to a perfect home! 16.2hh, 2010, Thoroughbred Gelding. Bane has competed all over the country at the intermediate/3* levels, moved up to the advanced level last year and completed his first 4*-Short this year at Jersey Fresh! A wonderful horse to bring a talented young rider up the levels. Bane is a serious cross country horse, he is experienced, confident, fast, brave, and light in the hand. Very safe and will give a rider tons of confidence on the cross country! Obedient and extremely well trained on the flat, scopey and honest jumper! Competitive 3* horse with more advanced miles for the right rider! No vices, no previous injuries or soundness issues. Will consider lease to own for the right person. Berryville, VA. Priced 6-Figues. 703-463-7457

Career Highlights-

⭐️2021-
Red Hills OI- 5th
Jersey Fresh 4*-S – 11th
Millbrook Advanced- Completion
VAHT CCI3*-L – 9th

⭐️2020
Red Hills OI- 7th

⭐️2019
Groton House Prelim- 1st
Bromont Canada 3*-S – Completion
Millbrook OI- 7th
AEC OI- Completion
Morven Park OI- 3rd
Ocala Jockey Club CCI3-L 12th

⭐️2018
VAHT CCI2-L 7th

Perfect Petey – YEH ready for 5yo year

Perfect Petey is ready to find his perfect person, and bring more smiles to the people around him. Resurgent (Sky Mesa – Galloping Ami) is a stunning 2017 TB gelding who was the highest priced Sky Mesa to ever sell. Standing at 16.1hh, he is impeccably bred, raced lightly, and then retired sound before journeying into sport horse land in spring of 2021. Petey has competed in a handful of recognized events and YEH qualifiers, and never finished worse than 4th at a YEH qualifier, stacking up against some of the top warmbloods in this country. He is ready to run novice, and will be moving up in just a few weeks time.

Easy to flat with a massive canter, and point and shoot to fences with scope to spare, Petey would be best suited to a competent YR or amateur, or could go up the levels in a professional program wanting more. Hacks out in a group or alone, same off property as he is on, and has extensively traveled around the east coast – competed at places such as KHP, Chatt Hills, VHP, and Fair Hill.

Clean legged with no history of injury, and a full set of radiographs on file (including back) for interested parties.

Proudly offered for sale in Midlothian, VA: Gone Skiing

2016 15.3H OTTB Mare by Fed Biz out of Woodland Sprite (Grand Sire is Giant’s Causeway)

“Aspen” is a total sweetheart who was purchased as an event prospect. She is brave, smart, and a scopey jumper. She has been in professional training since 2019, loving every minute of her new job, and would clearly excel as an event horse. She requires a confident rider since she is still green, but she shows a lot of promise and will progress quickly with a confident rider. Extremely sweet on the ground, not at all mareish, and she truly loves her people. A good home is a must.

$8500 OBO

Please contact Lainey at (804) 301-5888 to indicate interest.

Slick Moves, FEI and Prelim 2014, 16.3 Thoroughbred Gelding

Zuko has all the makings of a horse that will reach the top level of sport. At 7, he has experience at prelim, multiple top 5 placings at training level, and top 5 at CCI*L. He has been an absolute joy to help produce. This horse will be someone’s career maker.

He has beautiful fluid gates, and a canter to die for. Zuko is a very competitive and consistent horse. He is brave XC, and careful in SJ. He has no disobedience or vices. And he is a joy to be around and travel with. He is suitable for a young rider looking for their first superstar, and he has the talent for a professional looking for an upper level mount to add to their string.

Zuko’s 2021 achievements include:
2nd Middleburg OT
4th Area II Championships OT
9th Waredaca OP
5th VAHT CCI* L

Zuko is now qualified for CCI** S and ready to make someone’s dreams come true for the 2022 season.

Your Next Best Friend!

Mr. Barron
Aka Ronnie

2008 OTTB 16.1hh Two-star Eventing machine. Looks for the flags and goes! Three elegant gates, dressage scores in the low 30s and an excellent counter canter. Safe, clear and fast on cross country. Ridden and competed by an adult amateur his eventing career with many ribbons including qualifying for AECs the last four years. Suitable for AA, Jr. or Pro. Hacks out alone or with buddies. Travels well. Very sweet guy that loves to cuddle. Only selling him because of his potential. Always sound and healthy. No Vices. Mr. Barron is ready to move up to Intermediate or take his next person up the levels. Ronnie is very quiet and relaxed at home, occasionally giving beginner lessons. He would benefit in a program that has regular stadium jumping practice. He is rideable even after sitting in a stall for a few days. He wakes up at shows but doesn’t need lunging or pre-rides to perform well. He is all go for cross-country with only one stop in 35 starts. Ronnie is a lighter build TB which has proven to keep him sound for six years of heavy conditioning and competing. Straight-forward, tough and uncomplicated feet. He is quiet in his stall and in the pasture. He does appreciate regular turn-out, preferably on grass. Ronnie is the sweetest horse I have owned. I would love to see him go to a home that would appreciate and love him.

Training packer ready to move up

2011 OTTB 17.2+ hh mare (JC name Affirmed Coed)

Sire: Prefer; Dam: Hopeful Coed; USEA Horse ID 201088

8 Training level competitions at recognized shows with no XC jump penalties

1st place at Texas Rose and 2nd place at Heritage Park in 2019 (Training level)

Selling because I realized I don’t have the bandwidth to compete two horses while working a full-time job with a commute. Mal has not been competed in ~1 year because I moved and am building out a new barn/facility. Had planned to move her up to Preliminary level before COVID hit and before I moved. Then life happened.

Mal has excellent ground manners. Clips/ties/trailers. Can hop on her from just about any object (necessary as she’s a tall girl!). Will carefully jump anything you point her at.

XC is her strength. She’s ready to pack a young person up through the levels or for an AA to move up to Prelim/Intermediate. Could also see her excelling in the Hunter ring.

Videos are of Mal running XC a year ago and packing around a beginner a few weeks ago.

Price negotiable to an excellent home.

Sale or lease on versatile 2015 TB gelding

Churro is a 2015, 16h2 OTTB gelding. He truly is a stunner, but his best attribute is his brain! This is the smartest, most quiet horse in the barn, yet he is a forward, sensible ride. He is the same wether he is ridden 5x a week or has had a month off, hop on and ride! He is the same at shows as he is at home.

He is easy for everything : vet, farrier, trailer, clip, trail rides alone or in group, you name it he does it.

Churro has lots of experience eventing up to Novice (Pre-Training) level, he is schooling Training level with ease. Always in the top 3 after dressage with scores as low as 25. Very consistent and well schooled on the flat, he could have a career in straight dressage easily. Has a spotless record on xc, this horse loves to jump and is very brave. Could also become a show jumper or probably even a hunter with the proper training. He is so trainable that you can direct him any way that you want!

Not an UL (Prelim +) horse due to a mild heart murmur. Full report available. Has been cleared to keep his current exercise level and has shown no limitations in that lifestyle.

For sale, lease or lease to own. Priced in CAD$

Honest and correct 12 yo training level OTTB gelding

Fire For Effect (JC Aristarchus), Arty, is a sound and dependable 2009 15.3 hand OTTB gelding. Recently finishing 9th in the training division at AECs, Arty is the kindest and most hardworking horse I’ve ever had the pleasure of riding. I purchased Arty directly off the track in 2017 and he has remained my personal horse. He has accumulated an expansive and clean record through training level including the Retired Racehorse Project and American Eventing Championships. Arty consistently scores in the low 30s and has never had a jump penalty on cross country.

Arty would be best suited for an eager teenager or adult amateur looking for a dependable, but forward thinking mount. Arty is quiet enough for a beginner at home, but is forward and game at shows. He is a solid citizen; no vices, extremely well mannered, stands for the farrier, clipping, bathing, mane pulling, etc. He is kind in the pasture, quiet in the stall, and an overall easy keeper. Loads easily and hauls quietly. He truly checks all of the boxes.

Arty is proficient at second level movements and schooling prelim fences. He is very honest on course and deserves a rider that won’t take advantage of his eagerness to please. While Arty could take the right rider up to prelim, I believe he would be best suited running training and below.

With 23 career starts on the track, Arty has proven to be a sound athlete. He has correct conformation, plenty of bone, solid feet, and requires little maintenance.

I am willing to wait for the perfect, loving home for Arty. With a young daughter and a full time career, I simply do not have the time to give Arty the riding opportunities he loves and deserves. Serious, adult inquiries only. While I am happy to share current radiographs and exams, any further PPE will be at buyers expense. $30k. Located in Ball Ground, Ga. Contact Erica Addison for more information. 256.710.5535.

Listings included in this article are randomly selected and not confirmed to be current and active before inclusion. Sport Horse Nation features user-generated content and therefore cannot verify or make any warranty as to the validity or reliability of information.

Tuesday News & Notes from Legends Horse Feed

 

If you’ve ever dreamed of a career in equestrian photography, we’ve found one heck of an opportunity for you, courtesy of Shelley Paulson Photography and Eye Candy Jumpers. Want some industry leading mentorship and the chance to go to Wellington to hone your craft? Click on the post above for all the deets and to register your interest. Happy snapping!

Events Closing Today: Horse Trials at Majestic Oaks

Tuesday News:

The Holekamp/Turner Grant, which funds a trip to the Young Horse World Championships at Le Lion d’Angers, is one of the most coveted grants in US eventing — but what does winning it mean for a horse’s future? Check out some of the graduates and what they’ve been up to since making the trip to France.

Does your workout regime consist of riding, mucking out, and traipsing back and forth to the field? There’s a strong case to be made for adding in supplementary training — and if you’ve ever met an equestrian who’s tried Pilates, you’ll know that there’s a lot of love for this mixed discipline workout. Here’s why you — and your horse — should give it a go.

Everything Chris Bartle touches turns to gold, and that’s just the facts. Formerly the German team’s secret weapon, he’s spent the last few years turning the Brits into an unbeatable beast of a squad. But what’s actually behind his remarkable ability to transform the very good into the truly legendary?

Breeding is no joke, and if your precious mare is in foal, you’re more than likely quietly stressing out about the whole thing pretty much constantly. Save yourself a bit of anguish — and get prepared to spot the signs of anything amiss — with this comprehensive piece.

In need of some inspiration before you fire the clippers up this week? Check out these 50 artistic shave jobs and start planning how you’ll explain your motives to your yard owner.

Video Break:

Winter is coming, and Michael Jung‘s retirees La Biosthetique Sam and fischerRocana are certainly embracing it.

Monday News & Notes from FutureTrack

The season has been firmly put to bed, which means that the indoor cross-country circuit can begin — and the Sweden International Horse Show certainly delivered on that front. 12 combinations representing five countries came forward for the fast and furious class under the lights, which saw Sweden handily take the team competition and their leading rider, Frida Andersen, take the individual win with Box Leo. With all the uncertainty around the new COVID variant, which has already seen travel restrictions come into play in Europe, I certainly hope this won’t be the last of these classes we get to enjoy this winter.

National Holiday: It’s Cyber Monday, so if you’re not totally shopped out from the weekend, you could nab some serious deals online to finish up your Christmas shopping or stock up your tack room.

U.S. Weekend Action:

Pine Top Thanksgiving H.T. (Thompson, GA): [Website] [Results]

Your Monday Reading List:

Another week, another slew of reasons why Brexit could be the biggest danger yet to the UK’s horse industry. This time, the criticism comes from the FEI’s veterinary director, Göran Åkerström, who points out that the long waiting times and administrative nightmare of the extra border controls is likely to stop people from travelling between Britain and continental Europe unless they absolutely have to. No man is an island, as the saying goes, but at this rate, the UK’s horse industry certainly is.

Virginia-based trainer Ally Smith doesn’t just focus on producing horses for showjumping and eventing — she also provides a lifeline for working horses heading to the slaughterhouse. This might be my favourite lockdown venture yet.

More and more, buyers in the market for a new horse are looking for the holy grail: a totally clean sheet from the vet. But do you actually need your horse to have perfect x-rays and no lumps, bumps, or oddities, or is learning to manage minor issues part and parcel of owning competition horses?

Heading down to the southern sun from one of the colder states this winter? Lucky you — but before you go, brush up on how the move might affect your horse’s health and what you can do to prevent any issues from arising. Oh, and have a margarita for me, please.

We’ve all had those moments when, after receiving a particularly disappointing score in a test, we assume the judge doesn’t like us, our horse, the brand of saddle we ride in, or somethingBut while some degree of subjectivity will always come into play, judges work hard to be as objective as possible — and as a rider, the best thing you can learn is to control the variables you can and do the very best you and your horse are capable of on the day.

The FutureTrack Follow:


I’m not sure I’ve ever seen anyone more badass than Danish vaulter Amanda Staalsø — and even if you don’t fancy ever doing flips on top of a horse, her content will definitely inspire you to go big or go home.

Morning Viewing:

Bicton CCI5* winner Gemma Tattersall is becoming a real force to be reckoned with on the showjumping circuit too, and she began her Oliva Nova circuit with a bang, winning the 1.40m gold tour with the excellent MGH Candy Girl. Catch their blazing round here:


Sunday Video: Meet the Eventers of the 2021 Thoroughbred Makeover

We’re huge fans of the Thoroughbred Makeover and National Symposium, which gives ex-racehorses a brilliant platform to show off their talents and offers fantastic incentives for riders to give one of these big-hearted horses a second chance at a second career. Last month’s Makeover finale was a bumper edition, combining two years’ worth of entries into one jam-packed event — that’s roughly 400 horses across the disciplines!

Both the 2020 and 2021 eventing finalists’ rides have been compiled into two action-packed videos, which provide some serious inspiration if you’re thinking of making an entry into next year’s Makeover — or if you just want to get the very best out of your own OTTB. We also highly recommend catching up on the Makeover Masterclass, which is a hefty watch at well over two hours, but will give you a priceless primer on how to pick your next project and begin the training process. Perfect winter viewing, we reckon.

Applications Open for the British CCI3*-S European Cup Team

If you’re a British rider competing at CCI3*-S and would like to try your hand at representing your country in a European Championship, the European Cup — formerly known as the Rural Riders European Championship — could be the perfect opportunity for you. Ordinarily held every two years, it was last run in 2019 as this year’s planned edition, set to run in Lausanne, Switzerland, was postponed. Now, the Cup will run in 2022 and 2023 before returning to a two-year cycle and running again in 2025.

The unique competition allows up to eight combinations to compete per country, with six team places and two individual places available. In a unique twist, all the team riders must perform a test together in a long arena, emphasising the need for some seriously good team bonding beforehand. Though the competition is held at CCI3*-S, cross-country is held prior to showjumping, giving competitors valuable experience of the championship format.

So who’s it for, anyway?

“There are generally two types of rider who can enjoy the journey through career progression when representing Great Britain in the CCI3*-S European Championships,” reads British Eventing’s guide to selection. Those are as follows:

  • Those who are no longer eligible for BE National or International youth teams (which are for riders 12 to 21 years old).
  • Riders who began eventing at a later age or those who, during their young rider years lacked the necessary horse power or opportunity to compete at CCI3*-S level.

The eligibility requirements are as follows, per BE:

  • Riders and Horses either separately or together must not have completed a CCI4*L or CCIO4*S in the last 2 years prior to the next European Cup unless this was as a Junior or Young Rider.
  • Riders and Horses either separately or together must not have completed a CCI5*L, European or World Championships or Olympic Games at any time.
  • Combinations should be able to ride as part of the Team dressage squad (6 x combinations in a 20×60 arena at the same time) as well as the usual individual/Team CCI3*S format.
  •  As a guide for competitors, they as a combination should aspire to achieve an average dressage score of 30 or below, an average show jumping score of 4 penalties or better and an average cross-country score of no more than 10 penalties slower than the fastest time in the class.
  • Athletes/combinations who wish to be considered for selection should be aiming at least one result at 2* or above of 28 or better dressage, maximum of 4 penalties in show Jumping and clear xc within 3-time penalties of the fastest horse in xc.
  • Riders must be a British passport holder.

Applications have now opened if you’d like to be considered for the 2022 competition, which will be held in Lausanne from September 1-4. Applicants will need to commit to training and selection days, and will be observed by selectors at national and international competitions throughout the selection period next season. To brush up on the full selection guidelines, click here — or, to go ahead and get your name on the list, fill out the form here. Applications will close on December 20.

Fitness Work on Hills: An Excerpt from ‘Training Horses the Ingrid Klimke Way’

In this excerpt from “Training Horses the Ingrid Klimke Way,” Olympian Ingrid Klimke shares why she feels hill workouts are necessary fitness builders for the equine athlete. Reprinted with permission from Trafalgar Square Books (www.horseandriderbooks.com).

Photo by Horst Streitferdt.

Training on hills is part of our regular working program. Going uphill and working on hills strengthens the entire musculature, promotes conditioning, and is good for the horse’s balance and surefootedness.

Ideally, we travel to hills for training every fifth day. There, we begin with a 10- to 15-minute stretching phase at the walk — good training for building up the horse’s entire musculature. When we begin uphill, the horse must strike off very energetically from behind and use his whole back. In the beginning, I must make sure not to ride up- or downhill when it’s too steep: a horse needs to adjust slowly to the new demand being made of him. With regular training, the overall steepness can be increased.

At the end of the stretching phase at the walk, I work in posting trot at an easy tempo for 10 to 15 minutes. In trot, I also work both uphill and downhill. Training on the hills is especially exciting for stallions as it presents many new sensations for them to process. Temporarily, this excitement promotes a dynamic through which you can enhance the horse’s entire way of going, making it more expressive, imposing, and cadenced. When riding uphill, you bend slightly forward and push your weight down into your heels. Of course, the horse must, at some point, learn to trot downhill and maintain his balance as he does so. As this takes place, you bring your upper body back slightly, in order to always keep your seat in balance with the horse.

After the trot phase, I canter on at a quiet tempo. Often, with young horses, the canter work on hills is often still weak. Most of the time, horses that are familiar with this exercise accelerate as the hill gets steeper. On the other hand, young horses often lose power quickly and, for example, break to trot. Initially, allow your horse to go in his chosen tempo and do not drive him uphill. You should always introduce this training to a young horse very slowly and carefully, so as not to overwhelm him. While the horse may have become accustomed to varying ground conditions while going uphill, coming downhill really requires the highest levels of concentration.

When cantering in a large group, it’s a given that there is the danger of horses egging each other on and getting hot. Therefore, it’s advisable to work in small groups. Only horses that fit together well based on their level of training should get to canter together. But it is not only the horse’s training level that needs to be considered: what’s “inside” your horse is also a decisive factor. For example, with my horses, ambitious Bobby always wants to try to pass the equally ambitious Escada. Therefore, at a certain point in their conditioning, they must go their separate ways, otherwise, they simply gallop much too fast. In contrast, the amiable Soma will happily canter more calmly with Geraldine, and they can easily take turns following one another when ridden. Along these lines, Weisse Düne is easy to regulate, even when she is following other horses (although, this may change with time).

The more regularly and often the horses gallop in the hills, the more conditioned and strong they become. This can definitely increase their motivation and ambition, and then the groups need to be reorganized to accommodate. Therefore, begin gallop work very quietly, not galloping for more than 2 minutes. If your horse still has enough strength, you can take a 3-minute walk break and then gallop uphill again one more time. Afterward, slowly transition down to a trot, spending 5 to 10 minutes at a slow trot before finally transitioning to the walk. We ride long enough at the walk for the pulse and breath of our horses to completely return to normal.

Pick up your copy of Training Horses the Ingrid Klimke Way from Trafalgar Square Books HERE!

Friday Video from SmartPak: A Day in the Life of Hayley Turner

I often think of jockeys as the paternal twins of eventers. We’ve got much of the same blood running through our veins; the same hunger for adrenaline, the same healthy dose of insanity and joie de vivre that means our brains are mostly just hard-wired to go really, really fast. So I was delighted to nab a spare fifteen minutes to delve into the life of British jockey Hayley Turner via this fascinating video. I know so many of you will relate to the dualities of her life: the hard work, the dark and early mornings, the aching loneliness, all of which is juxtaposed against the thrill of chasing a goal and the magic of finding yourself totally in sync with a horse.

Go Racing.

Hot to Trot: Styling Tips for Your Next Sashay Down the Horse Inspection Runway

The key to a great look? Knowing yourself and taking confidence in what makes you feel good, like Sweden;s Malin Josefsson. Photo by Tilly Berendt.

Occasionally, I’ll end up shooting the breeze with another photographer or journalist who, in the course of the conversation, admits in hushed tones that they always feel a little bit overwhelmed by trot-ups — how to find interesting angles, how to pull a decent story, how to pay lip-service to notable brands without it coming across as shoehorned #sponcon. Not me. In the heady moments before a horse inspection, I slowly transmogrify into a bargain basement Anna Wintour, perched in my front row seat and ready to cast my beady eye over outfit after delicious outfit, much as I do when live-tweeting the Met Gala, though with fewer kitchen cocktails involved. (Unless, of course, I’ve been roped in by EN’s US squad to pen an unofficial jog awards post, in which case just as much alcohol is involved, and I’m usually writing them while wearing lipstick and sunglasses in a bubble bath that’s dangerously close to overflowing. It’s hard work being this wildly glamorous, but someone’s gotta do it.)

Though it doesn’t technically count as it’s a team outfit, Great Britain’s Sarah Bullimore looks super-smart in crisp white with statement Fairfax and Favor boots at the European Championships — a simple, effective outfit that would suit anyone and any venue . Photo by Tilly Berendt.

So when my pals at ritzy British footwear company Fairfax and Favor suggested we put together a jam-packed post full of trot-up outfit tips and some of our favourite looks of the 2021 season, it was absolutely no surprise that I, the Carrie Bradshaw of the team, was asked to do it.

(Actually, the conversation went something like this:

SCENE: SLACK APP INBOX. CUT TO DM BETWEEN EN EDITOR SALLY SPICKARD AND FASHIONABLE PROTAGONIST TILLY BERENDT

SS: …and so that’s the brief, basically. Do you think you could do that?

FP: Absolutely! Delighted you think I’m the person for the job. I have many opinions already.

SS: I mean, you’re the only one who’s remotely into fashion, so it’s sort of yours by default.

FP: I will…take that.

END SCENE)

Mollie Summerland’s Luhmühlen dress was actually a last-minute lucky find at H&M, which proves that a great look doesn’t have to break the bank. Photo by Tilly Berendt.

And so, dear reader, here you are: safe in the hands of a sort-of-certified fashion expert-of-some-description; a journalist who, if nothing else, has been trusted to dress at least two riders for five-stars in recent memory, so mustn’t be that bad at it, right? (Right…?!) I’ve rounded up some of the trot-up looks that really caught my eye this season, and put together some pretty solid advice if you always find trot-up prep a bit of a stressful situation. Do you need to follow my advice? Not at all! Fashion is subjective, and I’m a thirty-year-old woman who still tries to bring emo bangs back into style approximately twice a year, so feel free to take what works for you and discard the rest. If you’re already consistently slaying on the horsey runway, you might not need any of the advice that’s to follow from here on out — and equally, if you view trot-ups as a purely functional task and think this is a pretty frivolous topic to fritter away 2,000 words on, that’s totally cool too. If, however, you’re somewhere in the middle — keen to make the most of the moment, aware that a great outfit can give you the chance to elevate your personal brand and promote sponsors, and feeling just a bit frazzled by all the options — then I hope that together, we can venture towards the light, to a safe space devoid of tweed ponchos.

Find your style

Maybe you’re planning ahead for your first-ever trot-up, or perhaps you’ve reached your hundredth and still find yourself rummaging around for a vaguely clean shirt minutes before the ground jury assembles. In either case, finding yourself in the fashion hinterlands can be pretty overwhelming, and understanding how to put together an outfit that doesn’t make you feel like you’re playing dress-up in someone else’s clothes can seem like a confusing time-suck. But ultimately, it doesn’t have to be a tough task — what we really want to do here is to create an outfit that’s very you. Think about the outfits you gravitate to in ‘normal’ life. Who are you when you’re not on a horse?

Ariel Grald presents Leamore Master Plan in a simple but striking outfit that had the EN group chat buzzing — and unanimously considering taking up Pilates. Photo by Tilly Berendt.

“Someone who’s eagerly awaiting their next opportunity to get on a horse,” you might be thinking. If clothes really, really aren’t your thing, start by working out what you feel confident about, and emphasise that. Maybe it’s a feature — like Ariel Grald, you might have toned arms to rival Madonna’s, in which case centring your outfit around a great sleeveless top or dress is just the good and right thing to do — or maybe it’s a sentiment. One of my absolute favourite sartorial choices at a trot-up this year was just a small, significant accessory: at Kentucky this spring, Ema Klugman opted to display her allyship via her mask. While I do hope the masks themselves will soon be consigned to history, along with the pandemic, I think this could usher in a great wave of literal statement pieces on the trot-up strip, most obviously in the form of graphic tees. Whether you want to make a point about global warming, human rights, or you simply want to share a quote that means a lot to you, don’t be afraid to be let your clothes do the talking.

Ema Klugman used a simple accessory to make a major statement at Kentucky — and even now that masks aren’t required on the strip, you can incorporate the things you stand for into your outfit. Photo by Shelby Allen.

It’s all about tailoring

The most simple and easy to execute piece of advice I can give you is this: great tailoring will change your life. Or at the very least, it’ll ensure you always get profile pic-worthy photos on trot-up day. The most obvious place to consider this is in a blazer or sport coat, which should be slim cut and offer adequate movement through your shoulders. Save boxy, oversized blazers for the riders’ party — they tend to just look shapeless while you’re running, whereas a coat that’s cut to suit your frame will be flattering at all angles and in all paces.

As before, the best way to tackle this is to know your body and what you feel great in. What kind of shape would you tend to go for if you were invited to, for example, a wedding? What’s your go-to night out outfit that makes you feel reliably excellent, and how can you incorporate similar components into a look that’s horse-friendly?

Tamie Smith and Mai Baum were my best-dressed pair at Kentucky this spring – and it’s completely down to tailoring. Her smart (and brave) cream ensemble looks like it was made for her. Photo by Shelby Allen.

Functional footwear

When I write up trot-up reports with heaving galleries of images, it’s always the shoes that people comment on — for better or for worse. It’s not generally because the commenter doesn’t like the look of the shoes, if they’re leaving a disparaging bit of feedback; instead, it’s that they view them as ‘wildly impractical’ or ‘impossible to run in’, despite significant photographic evidence that the wearer did, in fact, manage to run in them.

Liz Halliday-Sharp and Deniro Z. Liz has opted for a small block heel — and a Fairfax and Favor Amira boot — which is easier to run in than a higher, thinner heel. Photo by Shelby Allen.

Ultimately, your choice of shoe will come down to your own comfort level, and the confidence you have in your horse on the day. If, like me, you lost your university years in a haze of cheap nights out at neighbouring nightclubs, you might be quite adept at running (and much, much more) in a heel. In that case, I say sod the haters — go forth and conquer. A heel — even a relatively insignificant one — elevates any outfit, and can provide the opportunity for a statement shoe, but err on the side of caution and opt for a blockier heel, as a skinny stiletto could snap over uneven ground, putting you in an avoidable risky situation.

If you’d rather skip the heel, a Chelsea boot is always a classy option, or you can find flat versions of many knee- and thigh-high boots, such as Fairfax and Favor’s Regina or Amira styles.

Kevin McNab and Scuderia 1918 A Best Friend — though admittedly, I have to disqualify this image from 2021’s best, purely because I actually took it at the tail end of 2020. Sorry, Kev. Photo by Tilly Berendt.

For men, styles aren’t just limited to dress shoes, which can look a bit identikit and uninspired a lot of the time. Try pairing a sport coat with a sharp, clean trainer, like Australia’s Kevin McNab does. In doing so, he makes his footwear the focal point of the outfit, which isn’t just quite a cool look — it’s also really savvy promotion for his sponsor and major owner, sneaker company Scuderia 1918. If you’re working with a clothing or footwear company — whether they’re an ongoing sponsor or have provided some free or discounted clothes (or you’d like to try to persuade them to!) — follow Kevin’s lead. Rather than going all out with a head-to-toe statement outfit full of the brand’s boldest pieces, pick one really eye-catching item and let it do all the talking, keeping the rest of your outfit simple and complementary. For example, if you choose a statement boot, such as an oxblood red thigh-high, pair it with a neutral pair of skinny jeans, a white shirt or dark, slim-cut sweater, and a matching nail polish or lipstick to tie it all together. The same idea works if your showcase piece is a bright blazer, an interesting belt, or a graphic tee — don’t overpower them with too busy an outfit. Let the rest of your clothes be the stage, and keep the spotlight on your piece of choice.

Will Rawlin dons midnight velvet while presenting VIP Vinnie at his five-star debut at Bicton. Photo by Tilly Berendt.

Use novel materials to play up classic cuts

Sometimes I feel for the menfolk, who have fewer options where fashionable turns are concerned at trot-ups. But actually, there are so many clever variations on the trot-up suit that can be employed — and one easy way to elevate an outfit is to opt for something a little bit less ‘accountant chic.’ Will Rawlin really nailed this at Bicton this autumn, where he made his five-star debut: though the cut of his outfit is a familiar one, with a slim trouser, crisp shirt, and tailored sport coat, his choice of a deep, sultry blue velvet made the look so memorable. We’ve seen other variations on the theme over the years — Paul Tapner‘s wooden bowtie at Badminton a few years ago; Tom Crisp‘s Liberty floral shirt under a slim-cut blue tweed suit that I am happy to take all the credit for, also spotted at Badminton. I’d love to see an emerald silk blazer on someone next spring, and to be totally honest with you, it might end up being me.

Emma Hyslop-Webb knows what she likes, and she’s made it her brand — you’ll always spot her in a splash of hot pink, which takes the lead in her otherwise understated outfit. Sticking to a theme like this makes it easier to shop for new pieces and helps make you recognisable on the circuit, so it’s savvy as well as stylish. Photo by Tilly Berendt.

In any case, this advice works for men and women alike, and will be particularly helpful once you’ve figured out what works best for you. If you know you’ll always wear skinny jeans to show off your great pins, try deviating from classic denim: black leather is an obvious and commonly-used alternative, but the truly bold could go for a snakeskin, or a punky tartan. There’s a pair of high-waisted silver snakeskin skinnies in my wardrobe just waiting to be called into service the next time I’m tasked with dressing someone. Admitting that might guarantee that no one ever asks me again, but they really would look incredible alongside a dappled grey.

Minimise the accessories

Or, at the very least, be sensible about them. By all means, embellish your outfit, but keep in mind what you’re there to do: you need to run alongside a hot, fit, unpredictable animal, and you need to not be hindered in your attempt to do so. For that reason, it’s best to avoid anything that flaps or jangles, such as statement necklaces, bangles, or scarves. Enormous earrings are risky, too, though I say this firmly as someone who was frightened into submission by an old riding instructor that any piercings were almost guaranteed to be ripped out by a horse at some point. Mind you, she was referring to the lip ring I’d recently acquired, but having since heard horror stories of someone having a nipple ring yanked out while walking down a barn aisle (fully clothed!), I’m inclined to think she might have been onto something.

 

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Instead, pick something a bit less likely to get in your way. Bold belts are great, and a big, kitschy buckle is particularly on trend at the moment, or treat yourself to a bright manicure for a pop of colour. Laura Collett is queen of the themed manicure, and Mollie Summerland went for a patriotic touch for her winning trip to Luhmühlen this year. If you’re desperate to channel your inner Jackie O with a silk scarf, consider tying it into a ponytail or as a retro headband, which actually leads me rather nicely into my next bit of advice…

Avoid a hairy situation

If you’re blessed with a voluptuous mane, you’ll be all too familiar with the struggle: just one errant gust of wind and you’re Cousin It, sprinting blindly down the strip and praying you don’t fall over a potted plant. Wearing a jaunty hat to keep it in check is hardly any better; the EN photo archives are teeming with pictures of hats doing some interpretive sky-dancing as their person disappears out of shot.

Hang onto your hats! Kylie Roddy debuts SRS Kan Do at Pau. I loved this look on Kylie, but it also served to demonstrate the associated risks of hat-wearing. Photo by Tilly Berendt.

The solution? Hat pins, if you must wear the fedora — and otherwise, functional, pretty hairstyles that’ll keep your mop in check. Half-up styles are easy to execute and work brilliantly if you, like me, look like the lovechild of Miss Trunchbull and a founding father with your hair up; practice before the big day with a claw clip or an embellished barrette to nail the art. Or go all in, and all up: sleek ponytails and buns offer an instant facelift, which most of us will be grateful for on Sunday morning after a particularly raucous riders’ party the night before. Pinch some mousse from your braiding kit to tame any flyaways and ensure a Kardashian-crisp slicked-back look. Pair with a sweep of bronzer on each cheekbone to revive yourself from the dead and make yourself look like you just emerged from the salon, not the back of a random horsebox.

Avery Klunick goes full French with a beret for the trot-up at Le Lion d’Angers. Yes, it also fell off. Photo by Tilly Berendt.

Something I’ve discovered this autumn, much to my own chagrin, is that TikTok really does have its uses here — it’s absolutely heaving with impossibly polished-looking fifteen year olds who know how to finesse complicated updos with total ease. I’m ashamed to admit I turned to them for help for a reason black-tie event, and shamefacedly, I must now hand you over to the teens. Here’s one example of a relatively simple look that’ll make a big impression at your next trot-up — and all you need is some braiding bands.

@updo_1688 #hair #greenscreenvideo #greenscreenvideo #Updo #Time #Wig #for ♬ Hello – OMFG

Also useful to have in your wardrobe is a dressy headband, which can instantly elevate a look and hide (most) hair sins. And absolutely essential? A can of dry shampoo, obviously.

Safety is stylish

It might not yet be de rigeur on the trot strip, but dressage star Charlotte Dujardin proved in Tokyo that you can look just as good in a riding hat while presenting your horse. And if yours has a tendency to act up in situations like this, or is making his trot-up debut? Give yourself one less thing to worry about and don the hat. Our favourite way to build an outfit around it? Think coordinated, smart schooling attire (or startlingly-clean-model-from-pages-of-tack-catalogue): a tidy, sleek ponytail, a smart shirt or polo tucked into a pair of breeches in tan or a fun colour, a belt, clean gloves that go with the rest of the outfit, and polished boots. You can still make bold fashion choices: perhaps you school at home in a pair of brown fully-laced boots, and you’ve been aching to pair them with a rust, aubergine, or forest green breech and a crisp white shirt. This is a super opportunity and will likely rocket you to the business end of the best-dressed list, too.

Ultimately, though, the first and final rule of fashion is simple: just have fun, choose what makes you feel good, and let that fill you with confidence. That’s the greatest accessory you’ll ever wear. (An incredible pair of boots is a close second here, though — so if you’re ready to treat yourself, head on over to Fairfax and Favor’s website to find your next winning look!)

Thursday Video: Showjumping, But Make it Festive

In need of an easy watch while you recover between courses this evening? Then tune in for a seasonally appropriate update from British vlogger Megan Elphick, who’s dressed up as the ultimate greedy gobbler for a Thanksgiving-themed jumping challenge. Poultry outfits: they give you wings! Literally.

Wednesday Video from Kentucky Performance Products: Tackling Britain’s Big Bs

Badminton, Burghley, Bramham, Blenheim: they’re the stuff that daydreams and bucket lists are made of; hallowed grounds where only the lucky few will get the chance to leave the start box. And for Sarah Olivier? They’re a very, very cool part of the day job. Tune in to find out which eventer’s wise words changed her mindset, how she’s adapted to eventing in the wake of motherhood, and what she does to get herself in the zone before tackling the world’s biggest fences, all in this super interview with the Equestrian Experience podcast!

Challenge: Maintaining condition during competition and training

Solution: Equi-Jewel®, a high-fat, low-starch and -sugar formula developed to safely meet the energy needs of your horse.

Whether you have a hard keeper that needs extra calories to maintain his weight, or a top performance horse that needs cool energy to perform at her peak, Equi-Jewel can meet your horse’s energy needs. Equi-Jewel reduces the risk of digestive upset, supports optimal muscle function, maintains stamina, and helps horses recover faster after hard work, all while providing the calories your horse needs to thrive.

The horse that matters to you matters to us®.  Call 859-873-2974 or visit KPPusa.com.

New Zealand Chef d’Equipe Graeme Thom Steps Down

Graeme Thom demonstrates how he plans to spend his free time this winter. Photo by Samantha Clark.

The New Zealand eventing team’s chef d’equipe Graeme Thom is stepping down from his role after five years in the job, culminating in the Tokyo Olympics and a team trip to CHIO Aachen this season. Interestingly, this is actually the second time he’s resigned from this role: he stepped down just a handful of months after first taking the job in early 2017 due to a flare-up of a spinal issue, though he gamely took the role back on swiftly thereafter to guide the Kiwis through an extended Olympic campaign.

“He has been on the frontline for a rollercoaster of an Olympic cycle which ran for five years and included a WEG and two Olympic preps in succession, with the postponement of Tokyo,” says Jock Paget, who can be found these days in his role as ESNZ High Performance General Manager. “Add that to the numerous changes to senior management, some legends of the sport retiring and a global pandemic, it’s hard to imagine how Graeme managed to finish the year with the same level of motivation and skill to contribute to the amazing success of Fair Hill and Pau. He has been the linchpin, who was tasked with the job of pulling everything together for the HP Eventing Programme and as a result has formed many strong connections.”

The positive changes that Graeme has set into motion will be offer enormous momentum for the eventing squad going forward, Jock says: “He has an incredible mind and has brought some innovative and world class concepts to the team and programme. We are hugely appreciative of Graeme and his time with us. His input has been invaluable and he will always be a part of this team. We wish him all the best for his next chapter.”

At the forefront of the Kiwi efforts is power couple Tim and Jonelle Price, both of whom were full of praise for the Canadian.

“For me personally, he has been instrumental in all the successes – both with the team and at events where I have competed individually,” says Tim. “He has been the lynchpin in terms of the logistical side and all the really important connective tissue aspect of what we do. That has enabled us to do our jobs to the best of our ability and to prepare to do our jobs to the best of our abilities which is where the true success is created. He has been amazing with the preparation and training. We will certainly miss him – no doubt we will still see him out and about but we will always be very grateful for everything he has done behind the scenes, a lot of it thankless – he just gets it all organised!”

Jonelle concurs: “It feels like we are on the cusp of some great things following a difficult time bouncing back from a generational change. We are hugely grateful for his help and guidance in getting to this point and hope we can produce some results in the coming years that will reflect the ground he has made. His professional approach and concise strategy and execution are key factors that we will look to take forward with us.”

Graeme debriefs with James Avery following cross-country at Bicton’s CCI5* earlier this summer. Photo by Tilly Berendt.

Graeme himself bid a bittersweet adieu to the squad he’s so enjoyed working with over the past five years: “From the riders to the coaches, horse health team, athlete support, selectors, owners and those at ESNZ who have given so much to the team,” he says, going on to credit High Performance Sport New Zealand and the New Zealand Olympic Committee. “Our team, programmes and ability to participate at the Olympic Games would not exist without them.”

Graeme’s modus operandi upon taking the role was not to make enormous structural changes, but rather to make small changes that would reap big rewards — an ongoing process that’s put the team back on the up-and-up.

“I feel a lot of comfort from the buy-in and trust by the riders and staff to the incremental improvements, which have in turn have led to continued good team camaraderie and moral,” he says. That moral became increasingly important during the pandemic, when travel restrictions meant that many competitions were off the table and even training often had to be conducted remotely. But, he says, “when you see the determination of our riders, led by the Prices, to just keep going through these challenging times, it inspired me to make the effort as well.”

Now, as Graeme prepares to hand his role to his as-yet-unannounced successor, he hopes to see more young Kiwi talent come to the epicentre of eventing — and more great horses join the squad, too.

“It is great that a few more riders have made the trek to the UK and that they recognise it is an absolute must if they want to be compared to the best and grow to beat the best. It is important to be looking forwards and managing the gaps amongst our horses – both relative to each other and to the world stage.”

Though Graeme’s plans — for now — involve enjoying some well-earned down-time in one place, he hopes to take on another role within sport in the future. Having previously successfully helmed the Canadian team, it’s not out of the realm of possibility to expect that we could see Graeme taking charge of another squad in the not-too-distant future.

“I will investigate what opportunities may exist and look forward to staying within sport if possible,” he says. “It has been an honour and a privilege to have been part of the New Zealand eventing team.”

Wednesday News & Notes from Haygain

How’s everyone’s meal-planning going? Good? Over here in England, I’m gearing up for one of my favourite social media stalking days of the year — the day when I can silently and savagely judge everyone’s meals from afar. You’re putting marshmallows on what, sorry?!

U.S. Weekend Preview:

Pine Top Thanksgiving H.T. (Thompson, GA): [Website] [Ride Times] [Entry Status] [Live Scores]

 

Wednesday News & Reading List:

How lucky are we — by which I mean eventing fans generally — to still get to cheer William Fox-Pitt on at the top levels? We’re even luckier, I reckon, to learn so much from him, whether that’s through his frequent magazine columns, his candour in interviews, and the many training books and clinics he’s been a part of. The FEI has rounded up some of their favourite snippets of wisdom from the maestro — and they’re all worth remembering!

It’s almost time for a fresh new year of competition, and with that comes new and revised rules. Catch up on USEF’s key rule changes in this handy primer.

We’re delighted to hear that 2010 Badminton winner Paul Tapner is back in the saddle, over a year after a freak accident out hacking left him with a serious brain bleed. During his recovery, he said he’d never ride again — and though he’s still firm in his decision not to get back to competition, he’s enjoying riding several horses at home, including his former five-star mount Bonza King of Rouges. Welcome back, Taperz!

Watch This:

Have you ever fancied diving into the rich history of the USET Headquarters in Gladstone, New Jersey? (I certainly have ever since I gobbled up Animal Planet’s Horsepower: The Road to the Maclay, truly the most mediocre bit of television ever made, as a tween.) Horse&CountryTV have released a new documentary feature on the iconic facility, which is available as part of your membership — so click here to sort out your evening entertainment!

Video Break:

I’m already deep in my daydreams about next summer’s trip to Rome for the World Championships. Time to rewatch Bettina Hoy‘s record-breaking test in 2002 — which scored a 20.8, or a 13.8 in today’s scoring. Can anyone come close next year?

Tuesday Video: Pass By Peer Pressure with Pippa Funnell

Last week, equestrian charity World Horse Welfare held its annual conference, which was jam-packed with talks and seminars on some of the industry’s hottest topics. Fortunately for anyone who couldn’t be there, they’ve also been putting out some fantastic web-based content — including this panel discussion on how to deal with the pressure you might feel from those around you to make certain decisions in your riding. At the forefront of the discussion is Pippa Funnell who, as the first rider to openly use sports psychology in her career, has always been something of an industry leader when it comes to the tough mental challenges involved with equestrian sport. She’s joined by WHW’s Jordan Headspeath and lawyer and rider Gill Keegan for a super chat that’ll help you clear your head, set your own goals, and shrug off uninvited input. Pour yourself a glass of wine and treat yourself to a game-changing watch.

#EventerProblems Vol. 280: When an Apple a Day Doesn’t Keep the Doctor Away

Horse-ownership, we tell ourselves and our normal, non-equestrian friends, is an endless treasure trove of joys. There are all those soothing hacks, the crunching of autumn leaves underhoof; there’s that incomparably soothing sound of a barn full of horses munching hay as you close up for the night. There’s all those days out competing, which, like the daydream fodder that came before them, always end with tears of joy, an armload of prizes, and the awed respect of all our peers.

Wait, who the heck are we kidding?! Horse-ownership is like performing an at-home black-market kidney removal, popping the excised organ into a gift box, and handing it to your vet. Do you really need the second one, either? Because honey, you’re going to need something to appease the farrier, who’s got wind of the fact that the vet’s getting the VIP treatment and has subsequently struck a deal with your horse that means you’re seeing him far more regularly than you’d really have hoped for. And if your horse is in one piece with all four shoes attached to all four hooves, and all four hooves more or less connected to functional limbs? You better believe that’s your moment to fall apart at the seams. Fortunately, you’re in great company, as our latest batch of #EventerProblems proves.

Don’t forget to tag ’em with #EventerProblems for inclusion in a future edition! Go Eventing.

Tuesday News & Notes from Legends Horse Feed

 

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Forget Nintendo Switches and endless updates of Animal Crossing — if you really want to delight the small person in your life this holiday season, take them to the nearest water jump and let them go fishing using a lunge whip. Ziggy, daughter of World Champion Ros Canter, reckons it’s the best entertainment a gal can get, and I’m inclined to agree with her.

Events Closing Today: Full Gallop Farm Jingle Bells H.T

Tuesday News:

Have you ever thought about the things you’d like to say to the younger version of you? Erin Brown, the ‘Concrete Cowgirl’, sure has, and has penned a poignant letter to the past. I reckon it’ll resonate with a lot of you.

We all love our golden oldies, but looking after them properly does require commitment — like staying abreast of all the potential health concerns they can face, and learning how to cope with them properly. Winter’s woes can make that a particularly stressful process, and if your horses need to stay inside more often as the weather takes a turn for the worse, you might find yourself dealing with heaves. Here’s how best to tackle it if you do.

More today from the world of modern pentathlon, which is in turmoil after the unfortunate scenes at this summer’s Olympics. Displays of less-than-expert riding and the ‘punch’ heard ’round the world led to the removal of riding from the sport after the Paris Games in 2024 — but those within pentathlon aren’t happy with this hasty decision, which reshapes a sport that was born with the modern Olympic movement. Now, athletes are revolting against mismanagement — and coming forward with horror stories from previous events.

Yesterday, we shared news of the newly formed Tiggy’s Trust — now, here’s more information on that super race day and launch party at Cheltenham Racecourse next month, which will bring together some of racing and eventing’s most vibrant names for a brilliant day of sport in honour of one excellent girl and the phenomenal legacy she leaves behind.

Video Break:

Love horses and art? Then you’ll enjoy this brief video with artist Ludovilk Myers, the man responsible for jazzing up the FEI’s resident horse statue for its anniversary this year.

Weekend Winners: SAzEA and Fresno County Horse Trials

We’re honing in on the end of the season now, but the weekend just gone still gave us plenty of eventing action to get excited about — most notably, the Area X Championships in Arizona, where our winners had plenty to celebrate!

Our unofficial lowest score award this week goes to West Coast-based Aussie eventer Rebecca Braitling, who finished on an impressive 22.9 in the Open Novice at Fresno with six-year-old Dassett Banker, making his US eventing debut after starting his career in the UK this year with Craig Barr and Amelia Walker. The gelding, who’s owned by Arnell Sport Horses, led from pillar to post, finishing on his dressage score and demonstrating exactly why he was worth flying over to California.

SAzEA Fall H.T. (Tucson, Arizona): [Website] [Results]

Area X Open Preliminary Championship: Ashley Fischer and Cimbria RC (41.2)

Area X Open Training Championship: Jennifer Achilles and Excel Star Lance (29.1)

Open Training: Astrid Gardner and Broctane (35.6)

Area X Open Novice Championship: Laura Worl Kober and Sterling Impression (29.5)

Novice Rider: Jennifer Achilles and Excel Star Solstice (31.8)

Open Novice: Sophie Hardesty and Castle Black Jack (27.1)

Area X Open Beginner Novice Championship: Meghan Martin and Red Sunrise (23.3)

Beginner Novice Rider A: Kilei Knickerbocker and Elite Symphony (37.3)

Beginner Novice Rider B: Kristen Hatch and Pepi’s Find (29.2)

Open Beginner Novice: Katherine Mynter Dykhouse and Felicia (36.5)

Introductory A: Hayley Hanson and Crossing Traffic (31.1)

Introductory B: Ginny Fay and Salmon River Rowan (30.3)

 

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Fresno County Horse Park H.T. (Fresno, California): [Website] [Results]

Open Intermediate: James Alliston and Karma (35.0)

Open Preliminary: Grace Wechser and Raskadero (33.5)

Open Modified: Gabriella Ringer and Get Wild (27.1)

Open Training: Madison Lloyd and Overdraft (26.6)

Training Rider: Mia Brown and Duke HW (31.4)

Training Three-Day: Barbara Slaughter and Catchy One-Liner (39.0)

Novice Rider A: Gina Coons and Lumiere de la Nuit (31.2)

Novice Rider B: Sophia Johnson and Arogorn’s Elegant Falcon (34.7)

Open Novice: Rebecca Braitling and Dassett Banker (22.9)

Novice Three-Day: Maddie Berry and SPF Vision Quest (35.6)

Beginner Novice Rider Jr: Sofia Seto and Armi (28.0)

Beginner Novice Rider Sr: Karen Burks and Avoca Druid (24.3)

Open Beginner Novice: Andrea Baxter and Robin 55 (29.3)

Beginner Novice Three-Day: Kaitlin Shade and Kaweah Barry Moon (37.9)

Open Introductory Jr: Emma Oatman and Air Lift (36.0)

Open Introductory Sr: Jennifer Wang and Cornet Star (37.2)

 

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Monday News & Notes from FutureTrack

 

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It’s Thanksgiving week, which means that, as a UK resident, all I can think about is my innate Black Friday panic. Will I find the best deals? Am I going to end up buying a bunch of stuff I don’t need out of sheer panic? What DO I actually need? Oh god, have I got to start thinking about what I’m buying people for Christmas today?!

Fortunately for you guys, once I’ve done some hyperventilating into a paper bag, EN will be rounding up some super deals and shops you should check out while you’re ticking your own list off this week. Hopefully we’ll all get through this without anyone buying a 4′ turnout rug just because it’s cute.

More importantly, though, this week is about gratitude — and in my opinion, expressing gratitude means sharing your wealth with those who have less, whether that’s literal wealth, food at your table, time, or joy. This post from Luhmühlen winner Mollie Summerland encapsulates the spirit of this week for me: at the end of the day, we’ve all got to look out for one another, because we’re all sitting down at the same huge, mad table to eat.

National Holiday: Finally, one I can get behind! It’s National Go For a Ride Day. Apparently we’re all spending too much time stressing in front of our screens (yes), and today’s vibe is to head outside and go for a meander just for the fun of it. I’m going to hack past the local golf course and daydream about galloping across it.

U.S. Weekend Action:

SAzEA Fall H.T. (Tucson, Arizona): [Website] [Results]

Fresno County Horse Park H.T. (Fresno, California): [Website] [Results]

Global Eventing Roundup:

Just two FEI events took place over the last few days: in Colombia, Bonza International hosted classes at CCI1* and CCI2*-S, while France’s Le Pouget closed out the European season with classes up to CCI4*-S and, evidently, one heck of a Saturday night party. You’d be forgiven for thinking that Europe couldn’t possibly pull out any more four-star horses needing runs, after a jam-packed autumn season that’s included a European Championships, CCI4*-L classes at Boekelo, Blair Castle, and Blenheim, ass well as five-stars at Bicton, Maryland, and Pau. Despite all of that, though, the class boasted 39 entries from around the continent and beyond.

It was a win for the home side in the feature class, as five-star rider Camille Lejeune and the nine-year-old Good Size de Quatre Chenes completed their climb to the top spot with a penalty-free cross-country round. The leaderboard was tight and tense throughout: dressage leaders Maxime Livio and Waitangi Amazon, who’d started off on a very respectable 26, dropped to 24th place after a tough showjumping round saw them tip five rails and add 0.8 time penalties. Maxime’s decision to withdraw before the cross-country finale put Spain’s Alexis Gomez in the lead, riding his 2019 Le Lion d’Angers mount Madagascar C, who had produced a foot-perfect showjumping round to stay on 28.1. But the time proved influential in the final phase, and when Alexis added just 3.2 penalties, it was enough to relegate him to third place, opening the door for Camille — who had added just 1.2 time in his showjumping round to his first-phase score of 28.1 — to take the win, followed by France’s Aurelie Gomez aboard Slamm de la Selune, who had been thoroughly consistent through each phase. Just one pair would finish on their dressage score; that was France’s Julie Simonet and Sursumcord’or, who wound up fourth on their 31.9.

Your Monday Reading List:

The untimely death of a horse is always heartbreaking news, but Forgeland Tiger Tot leaves behind her an inspiring legacy: she was bought for just a scant £3,000 by owned Katie Corteen, and together, the four-year-old mare and inexperienced rider began their journey from BE80 (Beginner Novice) through to Advanced, learning about the sport in tandem. Within just five years, they’d finished sixth in the National Intermediate Championship and stepped up to three-star — proving that sometimes, the most unconventional method really is the one that gets the job done.

Three cheers for continued advancement in veterinary science, after a circus pony with a fractured cannon bone was able to make a full recovery following surgical intervention. The pony’s leg, which was injured after it was hit by a truck, suffered a complete break of the bone — and believe me, those X-rays will make you cringe — but so expertly was a single plate installed that the little guy was completely recovered within three months. Okay, okay, so a Shetland pony’s work demands are probably a little bit different to those of an eventer, but we’ll take this as a win for the horse world.

One of the goals I’ve set for this off-season is to master my focus. I know I’m not alone in this: it’s so hard to snap into that tunnel vision, particularly if you’re squeezing competitions in around a full-time job and a busy life, and so often, I find myself cantering around the outside of a dressage arena benignly wondering about whether I need red or yellow onions to make a lentil stew, and if I actually remembered my important deadline date correctly or if I’ve missed it by a week and destroyed my entire career as a result. Fortunately for all of us, top rider psychologist Charlie Unwin has some super tips for finding focus — and they mostly involve stepping away from the ‘Gram.

If you’re the type of person to mentally and emotionally hibernate while eventing’s on hiatus (guilty), here’s something to look forward to instead: The queen of racing, Enable, is expecting her first foal in January. Apparently she’s as natural a broodmare so far as she was a racehorse — she conceived on her very first covering to the excellent stallion Kingman, which took place on Valentine’s Day. Romantic.

The FutureTrack Follow:

French photographer Christophe Taniere captures such evocative black and white images of equestrian sport, and I can’t stop browsing through them and daydreaming about filling a white wall with them. If you’re missing the buzz of championships, his account will help you relive everything.

I’m Listening To: 

It’s been a hot minute since I’ve shared a mucking out podcast rec, but after seven weeks of driving to events all over Europe, I’ve amassed a fair few new favourites. Chief among them? My Therapist Ghosted Me, starring Irish comedian Joanne McNally and model Vogue Williams. It’s wildly irreverent and enormously low-bro and I adore it. Not for the pearl-clutching brigade, but if you like to laugh so hard you snort a little bit, you’ll love this. It might just be enough to get you excited about getting out onto the yard on those icy cold mornings.

Donation Station:

The tragic loss of young rider Tiggy Hancock earlier this year sent shockwaves through the eventing world, well beyond just her native Ireland. Roundly remembered as a talented, kind, motivated teenager with a heart of gold, she’s been around some of the world’s biggest events this year in spirit, thanks to the yellow ribbons that Ireland’s top riders have been sporting. Now, Tiggy’s Trust has been created as a poignant legacy for the young star: it will serve to provide training opportunities for young riders without resources, as well as opening doors for aspiring riders to get their start in the saddle. Mental health services will benefit too, as this was a cause that Tiggy was very passionate about. To find out more about the Trust, to donate, or to book tickets for its launch day at Cheltenham next month, click here.

Morning Viewing:

Watch a bunch of bright-eyed racehorses head out for a trip to school over an arena eventing course, and be glad you don’t have to ride in such a tiny saddle…

Tuesday News & Notes from Legends Horse Feed

 

It’s baby season, folks, and we’ve got two rounds of huge congratulations to deliver over here in the UK to two five-star eventers, their partners, and their new tiny people. Julia Norman and husband Tristan welcomed baby Max into the world on November 12th, while James Sommerville and his wife Lucinda were joined by daughter Aoife Olivia yesterday. Both babies are gorgeous and thriving, and we look forward to seeing them join the rabble of mad lorry park children in the seasons to come!

Events Closing Today: Sporting Days Farm Horse Trials IVRocking Horse December H.T.

Tuesday News:

No one’s having a particularly nice time in the wake of Brexit, but the UK’s formerly thriving equestrian industry is being hit particularly hard. Conservative-leaning newspaper The Telegraph has published a short but searing indictment of how the government is handling the situation (which is to say, quite predictably, not at all), featuring comments from showjumping gold medallist Nick Skelton, who has been forced to relocate to the Netherlands as a result.

Rustling up equal rumblings is the Olympic three-to-a-team format, which was introduced at Tokyo this year. The format change, which was brought in to allow for more flags within the sport and is considered by many to be a last-gasp attempt to keep horse sports at the Games, has been criticised as unfair to riders and horses alike. Catch up with the viewpoints from the FEI General Assembly here.

Do you know an ex-racehorse who’s become a major character in their second life? Retraining of Racehorses, the UK’s foremost ex-racehorse support system and charity, is accepting nominations for their second-ever Horse Personality of the Year Award — click here to find out more and to make your nomination!

Badminton’s back for 2022, baby — and if you’ve ever daydreamed about working at this iconic event, there’s a pretty sweet job being advertised right now. Badminton’s team is looking for someone to helm their digital content, working across their website and social media channels to create engaging content that’ll make everyone as excited as you are for the return of this showpiece competition. Fancy the best behind-the-scenes view of the event? Check out the job spec here.

Video Break:

Interested in a more in-depth look at the three-to-a-team debate? Here’s a clip of Swiss showjumper Steve Guerdat arguing the case at the General Assembly.

Monday News & Notes from FutureTrack

How cool is this little discovery from Sara Kozumplik Murphy? While we probably can’t all hope to have finished the year with a totally clean slate in the showjumping — I know I definitely can’t — this is such a good reminder of a few crucial points. First up? You should absolutely schedule in time to review your year, whether on your own or with your trainer, and do so with a fine-toothed comb. What are you averaging in the dressage? Get those test sheets out, and have a look at individual marks, too. Is there a certain movement you nail each time? Where’s your weak spot, and how can you improve upon it this winter? Do the same with cross-country and showjumping: honestly assess your record, take notes of where you had problems and where things felt their very best, and use it to help plan out your next few months of training. You’ll probably find a few pleasant surprises in there (‘I’ve scored 8s every time in my medium trot!’) and it’ll help you chart your progress from year to year — and at the very least, it’s going to ensure you come out even better next year. That’s a win in my book!

National Holiday: It’s National Clean Out Your Fridge Day. As someone with a leaking fridge and a newly instated kitchen floor towel, I feel TRIGGERED.

US Weekend Action:

Tryon International Three-Day Event (Tryon, Nc.): [Website] [Results] [EN’s Coverage]

Horse Trials at Majestic Oaks (Reddick, Fl.): [Website] [Results]

River Glen H.T. (New Market, Tn.): [Website] [Results]

Your Monday Reading List:

There are few things cooler than seeing a superstar eventing mare’s offspring go on to the top levels. But while we all wait impatiently for those Classic Moet/Upsilon babies to make their debuts (they’re three now, it’s coming!), meet the delightful and diminutive Mr Fahrenheit III, who stepped up to five-star this year with Great Britain’s Simon Grieve. The son of Phoebe Buckley’s extraordinary Little Tiger is actually the result of her prize for taking the Best Mare title at Burghley in 2008 — in honour of her success, she was awarded an embryo transfer. And now, here we are.

Okay, okay, I lied — there is something that rivals that level of coolness, and that’s rescue horses smashing it in their second lives. That’s exactly what’s happened for Clarissa, who was one of the few survivors of a horrific abuse and neglect case in Pennsylvania five years ago. After an extensive rehab process — including several months in an Anderson sling, because she was too weak to stand on her own — the incredible mare has gone on to the USDF National Finals with her owner and best friend Taylor Dowd. Her new show name? Against All Odds. Who’s cutting onions in here?

Recently, I had a long chat with an event rider who swore up and down that the most useful thing they ever taught their horses was how to jump out of trot. But, they lamented, so few people opt to do that — and when they introduce it to their own students, it feels like they’re suggesting sitting trot without pants on. It’s not hard to see what they mean: if a horse can comfortably jump a reasonably sizeable fence from trot, they’ll have another tool in their arsenal if something goes a bit pear-shaped in a cross-country combination and they need to see themselves safely through. This article from hunter trainer John French might not be specifically aimed at eventers, but it’s a great starting point if you want to add trot jumps to your winter training in a productive, progressive way.

It’s 2021, and BLM roundups of wild mustangs are still taking place. Whether there’s a better solution to be had is a pretty bottomless topic for a debate, but nonetheless, activists and ecologists continue to work towards a kinder fate for these remarkable horses. One of those is ecologist Craig Downer, who has written this fascinating piece about observing the horses undisturbed in their natural habitat.

Are you heading to the 2021 USEA Annual Meeting and Convention? If so, you’re probably already struggling to figure out what you want to see on the jam-packed calendar. Fortunately for you, USEA has rounded up the six can’t-miss seminars that’ll provide the hot conversation topics of the winter season. Our pick? Making Strides for Equality and Growing the Sport, helmed by friend of EN Dr Anastasia Curwood and Heather Gillette, from 9.00 to 10.00 a.m. on Saturday, December 11.

The FutureTrack Follow:

Okay, okay, she’s not an equestrian Instagrammer, but actor Amanda McCants earns her slot here with this reel, which so accurately pokes fun at the silliest bits of horse girl culture. Let’s make 2022 the year we finally accept that it’s fine to be able to back up a trailer AND contour your face, if that’s something you’re into being able to do.

Morning Viewing:

Meet up-and-coming 4* eventer and vlogger Ashley Harrison:

Friday Video from SmartPak: Sneak a Peak at Pratoni with Andrew Hoy

2021 hasn’t even finished yet and already, we’re daydreaming about next year — a season that’ll revolve around the World Championships, set to take place just outside Rome at Italy’s Pratoni del Vivaro. It’ll be an interesting year, because the World Equestrian Games format has been dismantled in favour of discipline-specific championships scattered around the world, and so eventing will share the stage with just one other sport — combined driving. Frequent followers of Les Etoiles de Pau will be well familiar with how brilliantly the two sports mingle on the main stage, and also how chaotic a shared prize giving can be.

Anyway, there’s a long way to go before we need to think about laps of honour — first, we want to get a closer look at what to expect from the venue itself. Fortunately for us, Aussie Andrew Hoy took a trip there last week with a couple of his up-and-coming horses, and has shared this head cam footage from his trip around the CCI3*-L with Bloom des Hauts Crets, who finished second. Enjoy tagging along — and being every bit as nosy as we are!

Wednesday Video from Kentucky Performance Products: Five-Star Domination, Shrunk in the Wash

Whether you love feisty little chestnut mares from afar (safe; sensible) or you prefer to have them in your own string of horses (risky at best), you’ve probably long been hopelessly in love with the patron saint of the genre, Cathal Daniels‘s Rioghan Rua. Originally intended as a sales horse, the teeny-weeny 15.2hh powerhouse was sent to the then-teenaged rider to produce and move on by her breeders, Mags and Frank Kinsella.

But quickly, it became evident that the savvy rider and the ultra-sharp mare had a special understanding — an understanding that was compounded when she made the step up to become his Junior Europeans mount at just six years old. She would go on to compete at the Young Rider Europeans, too, all while tackling her own age championships at Le Lion d’Angers, and the pair stepped up to five-star at Pau in 2016, when Red was just nine and Cathal a bright-eyed and bushy-tailed 20. Since then, they’ve been part of the silver medal-winning Irish team at the World Equestrian Games in 2018, took the individual bronze at the European Championships in 2019, headed to Tokyo, where they had to step into the reserve spot after a minor health concern, and completed four five-stars in fine style.

But this isn’t the Rioghan Rua Wikipedia page — it’s a chance to get you behind those famous orange ears. (This, arguably, is the safest place to be — signed, someone who has strayed too close to her hind end.) Check out this excellent helmet cam video, courtesy of Irish Eventing Times, from last month’s Pau CCI5*, where the dynamic duo finished 13th and best of the Irish. Do the jumps look a little bigger from the back of a glorified pony? Totally. Are you ever in doubt that this superstar will clear them? Not even a little bit.

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Tuesday News & Notes from Legends Horse Feed

 

 

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The dawning of the off-season always brings with it a spate of bittersweet retirement announcements, and the latest to hit the airwaves is that of the excellent five-star mare Wieloch’s Utah Sun, piloted by Sweden’s Louise Romeike. Among the 17-year-old Holsteiner’s accomplishments are a clear run at Badminton in  2019, an eleventh-place finish at the 2017 European Championships, and competitive finishes at Aachen, Blair Castle, and Luhmühlen. Happy retirement, Urmel!

Events Closing Today: Pine Top Thanksgiving H.T.

Tuesday News: 

What are the ingredients that make up a champion? Find out with US Eventing, who got to know the five winners crowned at the Area IX championships earlier this fall in Utah.

US-based Jordanian equestrian Shayne Allise Steyteyiah is en route to the history books, as she works towards becoming the first-ever Middle Eastern woman to compete in dressage at the Olympics. Find out more about this intrepid rider here.

Equestrian fashion has come a long way since the days of rubber boots, Moody Mare hoodies, and waxed jackets. But what actually goes into producing the next must-have outfit, and how can you start your own career as a horsey fashion maven? Horse Pilot’s founder Guillaume Janin recounts his own journey.

Could potassium levels in your grazing have a negative effect on  your horse’s health? Nutritionist Dr Lucy Waldron separates fact from fiction.

Video Break:

Hitch a ride around Italy’s Montelibretti CCI3*-S with Australia’s Andrew Hoy and Creevagh Cooley.

Monday News & Notes from FutureTrack

The major international event of the weekend was Italy’s Pratoni del Vivaro (yes, the site of next year’s World Championships!), which hosted classes up to CCI4*-L. Germany’s Sandra Auffarth took top honours in the feature class with her Tokyo mount Viamant du Matz, finishing on their dressage score of 27.5, while France’s Maxime Livio finished second with Carouzo Bois Marotin, making it a one-two for Selle Français horses in this bumper year for the breed. Busy bee Tim Price followed up his win at Pau 5* the week before last with third aboard the smart Spartaco, and the US was very well represented by Matt Flynn and Wizzerd, who put an unlucky Boekelo to bed by finishing sixth and looking supremely classy every step of the way. Our U.S.-based contingent that traveled over for the European circuit this fall is wrapping up their tour now — both Matt as well as Sydney Conley Elliott stayed on after Aachen/Boekelo to compete and will soon be heading home as the season winds down.

U.S. Weekend Action:

Galway Downs International (Temecula, Ca.): [Website] [Results]

Full Gallop Farm November H.T. (Aiken, Sc.): [Website] [Results]

Full Moon Farms H.T. (Finksburg, Md.): [Website] [Results]

Rocking Horse Fall H.T. (Altoona, Fl.): [Website] [EResults]

Texas Rose Horse Park Fall H.T. (Tyler, Tx.): [Website] [Results]

Your Monday Reading List:

Stormhill Kossack, the former top-level mount of Andrew Nicholson, Giovanni Ugolotti, and Gemma Tattersall, has been put down after a long and happy retirement. Read more about the gelding, who was 23 years old, in this sweet tribute.

Your horse might not be able to talk, but he makes plenty of noise — it’s just up to you to work out what it all means. Fortunately, this excerpt from the book ‘The Horse’s Point of View’ gives you enough insight that you can upgrade from simply saying “bless you” every time he snorts.

Researchers at the University of Bristol have itemised a number of factors that contribute to a higher fall risk while eventing. These factors, which include longer courses and more frequent runs, are the newest set of guideposts in the long fight to make the sport as safe as possible.

The removal of riding from modern pentathlon has caused an understandable stir, with many delighted to see the back of this phase after Tokyo’s embarrassing scenes. But within pentathlon itself, the decision hasn’t been a popular one, with 650 athletes issuing a vote of no confidence in the president of the sport’s primary governing body.

SmartPak’s 12 Days of Deals begins today! Piper and Hadley breeches are buy two, get one free if you shop using code 12Deal1 at checkout. Click here for more.

Morning Viewing:

Get to know Yasmin Ingham, the young British superstar who took the win at Blenheim this year, in the first part of this in-depth interview from an evening with the Pony Club.