Classic Eventing Nation

Who Jumped It Best: The 1* Oxer-to-Triple Brush at SRF Carolina International (Part Two!)

Who Jumped It Best?

Earlier this week, we took a look at one of the earliest combinations on Beth Perkins’s Dark Waterspoon, LLC CCI1* course at the Setters’ Run Farm Carolina International, which came up at 7AB and featured a clipped timber oxer on a positive four-stride line to a skinny brush at B. Then, we had a look at half the class’s competitors and how they tackled that A element – and now, we’re looking at the other half and how they got over the B. You know what to do: scroll down through the following photos, then cast your vote for the best effort at the bottom of the page. Go Eventing!

Kelsey Seidel and Diamant de J’Adore YSH. Photo by Tilly Berendt.

Gianna Fernandez and Excel Star Vero Amore. Photo by Tilly Berendt.

Jasmine Hobart and Dresden Green. Photo by Tilly Berendt.

Jordyn Mary and PS Master Cobra. Photo by Tilly Berendt.

Lee Maher and HSH Explosion. Photo by Tilly Berendt.

Mallory Stiver and Hennessy Venom. Photo by Tilly Berendt.

Samantha Homeyer and Final Notice. Photo by Tilly Berendt.

Setters’ Run Farm Carolina International: [Website] [Entries] [Schedule] [Scores] [Live Stream] [EN’s Coverage] [EN’s Form Guide] [Volunteer]

Win a Trip to ANY Event of Your Choice with Ride iQ

Will Coleman’s 2021 winner, Off The Record, adds another Aachen rosette to his collection, finishing tenth on his return. Photo by Tilly Berendt.

Have you got an equestrian event bucket list stashed away somewhere? Perhaps you’ve always dreamed of a trip to Badminton, or fancy a week spent at a European Championship or Pan-Ams, or you fancy the crème-de-la-crème all-discipline showcase of CHIO Aachen (truly the ultimate bucket list event, if you ask me!). But travelling around the world to follow horse sport isn’t necessarily a cheap endeavor, which can make some of those dreams feel a little out of reach.

Enter Ride iQ, the clever app-based learning system that allows equestrian education to be accessible to everyone, no matter where they’re based. Now, they’re expanding that idea with a rather brilliant contest that’ll allow one lucky winner to pick an event of their choosing, grab a pal, and plan the trip of a lifetime — all expenses paid.

Entries close on April 5 at midnight ET, and entering is totally free. Click here to get your name in the hat, and start coming up with your destination of choice — we reckon the EN archives are a pretty good place to start hunting for some inspiration!


Making it to the Makeover – Don’t Protect Them

Well, here we are again! Back on the Makeover path for 2023! Against my better judgement, I found myself hitting the “Submit” button on the Makeover application. I was delighted, and a touch worried, to receive the coveted acceptance email two weeks ago. With a full-time job training and selling young warmbloods, a farm of my own full to the brim of client and personal horses, a family with a 4 year old (going on 13), and oh — did I mention a broken ankle? — maybe a touch worried is the understatement of the century. If you don’t laugh you’ll cry, right?

Yet, there’s one thing I wasn’t at all worried about, and that was finding my makeover mount. With all the fantastic connections I’ve built over the years, I was lucky enough to have him already standing in my barn. Just a month prior, I had gotten a text from a friend asking if I needed a new project, and even though I really didn’t, I found myself hooking up the truck and trailer to pick up a barely castrated 4 year old liver chestnut with the most adorable white face. (Do you see a trend in my decision-making abilities here?)

Lucky Devil — a 2019 gelding by Daredevil, out of Lasting Rose.

So, Lucky Devil came home with me. And for the last two months he’s been adjusting to sport horse life, doing ground work and building muscle. I had sat on him one time and was eagerly creating a training plan in my mind when it was all derailed by a broken ankle. Here we are laughing instead of crying again!

But we make do (mainly because we have no other option)! So as I hobbled around my barn, doing what little my family, friends and boarders would allow me to do with the horses, my toddler asked me one day if she could feed Lucky treats. Here I was, with a barely four year old horse, gelded maybe two months ago, standing in the crossties, myself in a boot and my little girl begging to give him cookies. I reluctantly agreed and hovered nervously. Much to my surprise, Lucky was an absolute saint and gingerly took treats from her hand. I watched in awe.

I marinated on the interaction for a long time. How did I end up with such a lovely, quiet animal, even though I’ve barely worked him? Was it sheer, dumb luck? Probably. Was it my skill in choosing horses? Definitely not. The more I thought about it, the more I realized that there have only been a handful of horses that have stepped foot on my farm in the last three years that I didn’t trust to be around my daughter. Maybe three in 50+ horses that I didn’t inherently trust. But why?

Sale horse, Love that Star, snuggling with Emmy.

Here’s the conclusion I’ve come to: I don’t protect them.

The overriding factor in each of these dozens of horses is the way they’re handled the moment they step foot on the farm. I don’t protect them. Not in turnout, not in the barn, not at any point in my relationship with my horses. Now, I promise I love them dearly, so just hear me out.

In turnout — I let them be a horse. I don’t try to protect them from all the things that come with being a horse. Minor injuries, bites, the weather, etc. I let them roam, play and interact with other horses. I’ll say that one again — I let them interact with other horses. I’ve learned that horses teach other horses so much faster than you or I ever would. They learn about personal space, about reading body language, about being respectful. All of these things play a factor in creating a calm, trustworthy animal.

Happy ponies in turnout!

In the barn — I let them be a little stressed. My barn is not the calm, quiet mecca for horses. There’s kids running around, tractors, four-wheelers, noises and spooky things. I don’t protect them from trivial outside stressors and because of that, the horses learn very quickly most things are no big deal.

In my relationship with them — I’ve stopped babying my horses. I set boundaries with my animals and I don’t protect their feelings when they overstep those boundaries. It is very important to me that I react to unwanted behavior swiftly and fairly. If they take over my personal space, nip at me, or rush through a gate, whatever it may be — I give them a big no and then take the pressure off. Horses learn when the pressure comes off and in order for the pressure to come off, you have to put it on in the first place! (I’m thinking this one is a whole blog post for another time!)

While I may not be riding, I may not be training, I may be months behind other trainers on this journey, I know I’m still creating a solid foundation to build upon with every interaction. Maybe I’m a bit old-fashioned, but my horses are consistently fantastic to be around and easy to train because I don’t protect them. Their minds are calmer, they are less stressed and more willing to trust me in all situations. I’ve created a safe space for my horses by not protecting them, by letting them make mistakes and learn from those mistakes. So when it comes time to step back in the stirrups, I know Lucky will be willing, honest and trusting in me.

Wednesday News & Notes from SRF Carolina International

Three time’s a charm. Will Coleman and Chin Tonic HS. Photo by Tilly Berendt.

The Setters’ Run Farm Carolina International may have crowned its winners last weekend, but we’re still not over all the excitement and fun of the ten year anniversary event (and the celebration of 25 years at the Carolina Horse Park!).

Records were broken, music videos were made, hat tricks were scored, and football was played.

Despite picking the winner as part of my Eventing Manager team, once again my non-horsey husband beat me in the rankings. One day I might trust the stats rather than the gooey feeling I get in my heart over certain horses!

Missing it already? You can relive all the fun and games with a H&C+ subscription.

Read EN’s roundup of the 4* competition here.

U.S. Weekend Preview

Full Gallop Farm March II H.T. (Aiken, SC) [Website] [Volunteer]

March Horse Trials at Majestic Oaks (Ocala, FL) [Website] [Entries] [Ride Times] [Volunteer] [Scoring]

Texas Rose Horse Park H.T (Tyler, TX) [Website] [Entries] [Ride Times] [Volunteer] [Scoring]

Wednesday News and Reading

I have a soft spot for certain event horses and there’s a Don Geniro shaped imprint in my heart. Sometimes it’s their name, or their color, the big white blaze down their face, or their kind eyes. It may be that they’ve inspired me in some way or that they evoke happy memories of days watching eventing. Often, it’s just something I can’t explain. I’ve heard riders talk about how a horse will tell them when it’s time to retire. In true Don Geniro quirkiness, he gave his rider, China’s Alex Hua Tian, the heads up mid-way through a World Championship cross country course. And so we start the eventing season without Don Geniro – Alex’s friend, 5*, World Championship and Olympic partner of ten years. I, for one, will miss him. We wish ‘The Don’ and his lucky new rider well in their dressage adventures. [Don Geniro Retires From Eventing]

There’s a whole bunch of interesting takeaways from the National Equine Forum – from addressing the equine industry in a changing world, to tackling unwanted behaviors in horses, playing for ‘team equestrian’ and how we’re all social media influencers for our sport. [Here’s A Summary]

Eventing legends Pippa Funnell and Tina Cook teamed up to deliver a masterclass demonstrating some of their training techniques. With advice about pole work and run outs, neck straps and nerves, seats and pelvic floor muscles, there’s plenty for us to be working on. [A Dream Team Masterclass]

While we were in Carolina, British eventers were out in force in Lincolnshire. There were wins for Oliver Townend and a fair few of the Badminton entries had successful spins around in preparation for the big one – Laura Collett, Izzy Taylor, Kitty King and Ros Canter, to name just a few. An Eventful Life has the full round up. [Two’ll Do For Oliver]

Equestrianism may be the only Olympic sport where men and women compete as equals, but it’s not as equal as we may think. Tania Millen from Horse Journals investigates gender equity and equality in equestrian sports around the world. [A Level Playing Field?]

I’ve heard many riders say that there are no bad rounds, just opportunities to learn. And that’s what a growth mindset is all about. It may sound a bit buzz-wordy, but it actually makes a fair bit of sense. From setting realistic goals, to celebrating the small wins (and the big ones), in a sport with the ups and downs that equestrianism has, a growth mindset is invaluable. [Every Day’s A School Day]

Can you help out this University of Edinburgh Master’s student who’s looking for eventers to complete her dissertation survey? The research, part of an MSc in Equine Science, relates to noseband tightness, clipping whiskers, and volunteering at competitions. To be eligible, you need to be over 18 and have competed in eventing in the last 18 months. [Contribute Here]

Sponsor Corner

Cross country day vibes from SRF Carolina International.

Video Break

It’s National Goof Off Day today so we advise you stop work immediately and watch this video of Boyd Martin having everything totally under control while his wife Silva’s away competing.

Tuesday Video Break: Let the Carolina International Helmet Cams Commence

It’s time for us to relive the action from this year’s Setters’ Run Farm Carolina International, thanks to the helmet cams donned by many competitors throughout the weekend. Our first helmet cam comes to us from the CCI2*-S division, where last year’s CCI1*-S champions Olivia Coolidge and her off-track Thoroughbred, Bold Impression (Bolductiv – Good Impressions), made the step up. Olivia and “Benny” steadily moved up the leaderboard throughout the weekend, eventually finishing in 13th overall as they aim for the CCI2*-L at Ocala International later this spring.

Enjoy the ride!

Carolina International
[Website] [Final Scores] [Live Stream Replay] [EN’s Coverage]

Lauren Billys Shady, Allison Springer, Kaylawna Smith-Cook, Jordan Crabo Receive 2023 SCES Grants

Southern California Equestrian Sports (SCES), an equestrian non-profit organization specializing in fundraising support, is thrilled to announce the allocation of eleven grants to the equestrian community.

Riders in various disciplines were awarded. Among them, Olympians, Para Equestrian athletes, promising young professionals, and individuals who demonstrated long term dedication to their sports. Avery Brown ($4,500), Sarah Mason-Beatty ($2,000), and Mia Rodier-Dawallo ($1,500) were recognized in Dressage. Three-Day Eventers Lauren Billys Shady ($3,000), Allison Springer ($3,000), Kaylawna Smith-Cook ($1,800) and Jordan Crabo ($1,500) were additionally named as athlete recipients.

In addition to grants given to the athletes, SCES also awarded grants to Desert International Horse Park ($5,000), Nilforushan Equisport Events ($1,500), the Spokane Sport Horse Farm ($5,000) and Area VI Eventing ($5,000). In total, SCES awarded more than $30,000 in grants to assist those in the equestrian community in their pursuits.

SCES Grant Recipient, Kaylawna Smith-Cook
Photo: Sherry Stewart

“We are incredibly proud to recognize and support the outstanding achievements of our equestrian athletes” Dave Kuhlman, President of the SCES, added. “Through the generosity of our incredible donors, we are honored and proud to help a variety of organizations and events in our community. We look forward to continuing to provide support and sponsorship as much as possible in the years to come.”

SCES is known for assisting equestrians and organizers in raising tax-deductible funds to support their National and International goals. They are proud to support all this year’s recipients as a part of their mission to support horse sports and competitors in a variety of disciplines at the international levels across the country.

“I am thrilled and honored to have received a special grant from SCES recognizing my hard work and dedication to the sport! This is an incredible organization to work with and has been instrumental in my ability to train and support my equine partners on my competitive journey,” stated recipient Allison Springer.

By continuing to create innovative and inspiring opportunities for any equestrian or competition meeting the eligibility criteria, in any discipline that is nationally or internationally recognized, SCES provides qualifying parties various opportunities to continue to grow equestrian sports worldwide. SCES is open to riders in all equestrian disciplines, from a variety of countries, competing at the international levels of competition (FEI), which proudly includes Paralympic Athletes.

“Receiving support from an organization that understands the financial commitment it takes to compete at the highest levels of equestrian sports is truly an honor. I am grateful for everything Southern California Equestrian Sports does to help equestrian athletes on an ongoing basis,” said recipient Sarah Mason-Beatty.

SCES grants have given countless athletes and events opportunities that may have otherwise not been available. Funded strictly through donations and operated nearly exclusively by volunteers, SCES continues to work to assist athletes, and now equestrian events and organizations as well, raise funds to meet and surpass goals whether it be competing internationally or improving an equestrian competition.

Andrea Pfeiffer, president of the Area VI Eventing Council remarked, “Receiving a grant from SCES allowed us to host a lovely awards dinner and presentation that otherwise would not have been possible to honor our members. This was a tremendous gift, and we greatly appreciate the support of this foundation and what they do for the entire equestrian industry.”

To learn more about how SCES can help you in your fundraising efforts, please visit their website at

About Southern California Equestrian Sports

Southern California Equestrian Sports, Inc. (SCES) is a non-profit organization dedicated to helping equestrian riders and organizers raise tax-deductible funds to compete in and support their National and International competitions throughout the United States.

SCES is designed to help athletes and owners expand their financial resources to train and compete by allowing supporters to receive tax-deductible benefits for contributions. SCES understands the financial commitment it takes to compete at the highest levels of equestrian sports and established an organization to help foster development and competition.

SCES will consider any equestrian or competition meeting the eligibility criteria, in any discipline that is nationally or internationally recognized, for grants. The seven FEI disciplines are Combined Driving, Dressage, Endurance, Eventing, Jumping, Reining, and Vaulting.

SCES has been granted tax-exempt status under Section 501(C)3 of the Internal Revenue Code. All contributions are tax-deductible at the maximum allowed by law and donations can be made on behalf of Southern California Equestrian Sports, Inc.

To learn more about how SCES, please visit

Farewell to Primmore’s Pride

Pippa Funnell and Primmore’s Pride after their Kentucky victory in 2003. Photo by Michelle Dunn.

One of the great eventing horses of our time, Pippa Funnell’s Primmore’s Pride was put to sleep on Monday at the age of 30.

Eventing enthusiasts likely know well the name Primmore’s Pride; a true-blue event horse that lived for the long-format days, “Kiri” found much success at the pinnacle of the sport. Perhaps best known to the eventing public as the bookend winner of Pippa’s Rolex Grand Slam, the majority Thoroughbred gelding bred by Joanna and Roger Day won both the 2003 Rolex Kentucky Three-Day Event as well as the 2003 Burghley Horse Trials. He was helped along by stablemate Supreme Rock, who won Badminton Horse Trials in 2003 to help secure the Grand Slam for Pippa.

It wasn’t only the Grand Slam that earned Primmore’s Pride his due. He showed early success as a young horse, finishing first in the prestigious Burghley Young Event Horse prize as a five-year-old and going on to top that with a win as a seven-year-old in the Young Horse Breeding World Championships at Le Lion d’Anger. In his debut at the now-five-star level, Primmore’s Pride was sixth at Burghley, following that up with a win as a ten-year-old at Kentucky. Pippa and Kiri’s first shot at the Olympics together came in 2004 when they were named to the British team for Athens. They’d make good on their success to date, finishing third individually and earning a team silver medal.

Pippa Funnell and Primmore’s Pride. Photo by Michelle Dunn.

As one final marker of definitive success and Breyer horse status, Primmore’s Pride picked up one final five-star win at the only major event he’d not won yet: the 2005 Badminton Horse Trials.

“I will be forever grateful to [owners] Denise and Roger Lincoln for giving me the opportunity to produce and compete a horse with such incredible ability,” Pippa wrote on social media. “Pippa Woodall for looking after him with such great care during his retirement, thank you. He gave me some momentous life changing victories such as winning two legs of The Rolex Grandslam plus two medals in Athens…I will never have another horse that will score 3 x 10’s [sic] for an extended trot like you did at the Games. You were incredible, despite being ever so slightly arrogant.”

The first year I attended the Rolex Kentucky Three-Day Event, I kept my program. I’d attended as many autograph signings as I could and tucked it away for posterity down the road. While writing this tribute, I went back into my bedroom and found the program, acting on a memory that I’d been lucky enough to make the year Pippa and Kiri won the first leg of the Grand Slam my “eventing debut”.

Photo by Sally Spickard.

So here’s to the legends like Primmore’s Pride: the ones you remember long after they’ve galloped past you, the ones who make you feel a little silly because they make you want to take on the biggest courses in the world — if only you had a horse just like that. We won’t soon forget the endless memories, and our condolences go out to Pippa and all who knew and loved Kiri.

Tuesday News & Notes from Kentucky Performance Products

Wow — what an enormous couple of days it’s been for eventing news. Between the release of Badminton entries (with no waitlist for the first time that I can remember!), the passing of Oratorio and Primmore’s Pride, the swapping of nationalities of Georgie Goss (nee Spence; formerly British, now Irish), the semi-retirement of Vanir Kamira, and, honestly, I’m probably still forgetting something, I’ve barely had time to even process my jet lag from Carolina. Something tells me it’ll hit me at some point this week though. Wish me luck!

Events Opening Today: Riga Meadow at Coole Park Combined TestWindRidge Farm Spring H.T.Texas Rose Horse Park H.T.- Modified Pending USEF ApprovalStable View Local Charities H.T.Catalpa Corner May Madness Horse TrialsThe Event at Skyline

Events Closing Today: CDCTA Spring H.T.Pine Hill Spring H.T.Rocking Horse Spring H.T.Stable View Spring 2/3/4* and H.T.

Tuesday News & Notes from Around the World:

If you’re a fan of showjumping, you’re probably a fan of supermare HH Azur. But where did McLain Ward’s superstar — who’s now won two Rolex Grand Slam legs — come from? Here’s the full story.

Despite vocal demand and a whopping 25 years of development, UK vets are reporting limited uptake for the new strangles vaccine. The vaccine, which is 94% effective in the prevention of this nasty respiratory virus, could be a huge boon for busy yards with plenty of horses coming and going. Here’s more on that.

Jessica Phoenix is an unarguable champion of OTTBs — and this lovely piece sheds some light on where the delightful Wabbit and Mike came from. I just really love horses with human names, tbh.

Sponsor Corner: I once groomed at a five-star for a horse who would go on hunger strike the second he arrived anywhere new. That is EXTREMELY stressful, frankly, especially when you know there’s a gruelling cross-country challenge to come. This useful article from KPP explains how to increase your horse’s appetite and avoid those quiet panics in a temporary stable somewhere in Germany.

Watch This: 

In honour of the great Primmore’s Pride, who died yesterday, relive his showjumping round with Pippa Funnell at the Athens Olympics in 2004.

Monday Video: Bettina Hoy and Silva Martin Mic’d Up at Bruce’s Field

The EN team is in agreement here: we could listen to mic’d up lessons all day long (so keep ’em coming!)

Here we have a really great treat in getting to listen in as Boyd Martin is coached through his dressage warm-up aboard Fedarman B at the $50,000 Grand-Prix Eventing Festival at Bruce’s Field by not one, but two German dressage coaches!

Wife Silva Martin was joined by Olympian Bettina Hoy in telling Boyd to keep his hands down and elbows unlocked. Isn’t it nice to know that even the pros still hear some of the same things that us plebeians do in our own lessons day-to-day? If you pick up anything from this video, I think it’s proof indeed that the building blocks of riding stay the same all the way up the levels. Isn’t that a heartening though at you stay the course on the quest to keep your shoulders back?

Thank you Boyd, Bettina, and Silva for sharing!

GPE at Bruce’s Field: GPE WebsiteH&C+ Livestream ReplayEN’s Coverage

Sneak a Peek at 2023 Badminton Horse Trials Entries

Lauren Nicholson and Vermiculus. Photo by Shannon Brinkman Photography.

What better way to kick off spring than with a released list of Badminton 2023 competitors? With only 45 days until the 2023 Badminton Horse Trials, presented by MARS Equestrian begins, the event is coming up right around the corner! We’re taking an early look into the accepted entries released today.

There are currently 88 entries, with a strong showing from Great Britain, and riders representing Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Ireland, Lithuania, New Zealand, Switzerland, and the United States as well.

Katherine Coleman and Monbeg Senna. Photo by Shannon Brinkman.

For the United States, we’ll see Katherine Coleman and first time 5* mount Monbeg Senna, Lillian Heard Wood with long-time partner LCC Barnaby, and Lauren Nicholson with Pratoni mount Vermiculus.

Lillian Heard Wood and LCC Barnaby. Photo by Shelby Allen.

Oliver Townend has five accepted entries in Swallow Springs, Cooley Rosalent, As Is, Pratoni partner Ballaghmor Class, and Tregilder, though due to FEI regulations he will have to narrow those entries down to two come competition time.

We see a strong field overall, with numerous competitors from the 2022 FEI World Championships – Pratoni:

– Michael Winter (CAN) with El Mundo
– Ros Canter (GBR) with Lordships Graffalo and Pencos Crown Jewel
– Laura Collett (GBR) with Dacapo and London 52
– Tom McEwen (GBR) with Toledo De Kerser and CHF Cooliser
– Oliver Townend with Swallow Springs, Cooley Rosalent, As Is, Ballaghmor Class, and Tregilder
– Susie Berry (IRL) with Ringwood LB
– Padraig McCarthy (IRL) with HHS Noble Call
– Austin O’Connor (IRL) with Colorado Blue
– Aistis Vitkauskas (LTU) and Commander VG
– Amanda Pottinger (NZL) with Just Kidding
– Tim Price (NZL) with rides Coup de Coeur Dudevin and Vitali
– Felix Vogg (SUI) with Cartania
– Lauren Nicholson (USA) with Vermiculus

While we would typically see a wait list with entries above the initial cut-off at 85, there are just 83 entries to go forward with in 2023. The 2023 Badminton Horse Trials will also have a significant schedule change to allow for flexibility around King Charles III’s coronation, which will take place on Saturday, May 6. Ordinarily, this would be cross country day at Badminton, but the schedule has been adjusted to have dressage on Friday and Saturday with a competition break for coronation, followed by cross country Sunday and show jumping Monday.

Tickets must be purchased ahead of the event, with early bird pricing through the end of March. Find more information on tickets and the event schedule on the Badminton Horse Trials website.