Dressage Day Chats: Meghan O’Donoghue, Lynn Symansky, Dana Widstrand

Meghan O’Donoghue and her scrappy OTTB, Pirate, took the eventing world by storm (and stole a few hearts along the way as well) last year when they rocked around their CCI4* debut to the tune of a 12th place finish. This year, Meghan and Pirate are ready to do it again, although Pirate was definitely ready to get the dressage over with and move on to the fun part. Pirate experienced a few moments of tension throughout their dressage test and are currently tied with Kyle Carter and Madison part in 21st on a 61.8. Meghan feels that this weekend will not be a dressage competition, as should be expected, and we all know that Pirate relishes these next two phases, so we are definitely crossing our fingers for this lovable pair this weekend.

Lynn Symansky and Donner rode the test ride before the judges this morning, and Donner certainly looked raring to go considering he has yet to run a cross country course this year. Lynn has played it safe with the Flying Deer this spring after team vets found a small filling in one of the 11-year-old OTTBs ankles. To that end, Lynn plans to head to Jersey Fresh and Bromont in the next couple of months. She said that he feels great and that he tends to keep himself fairly fit, so she feels confident that bringing him back will be a fairly smooth process.

We featured Dana Widstrand and “Super Rover” (Relentless Pursuit) on our Rolex Rookies series, and we definitely found this pair inspiring. Rover just turned 18 yesterday, but don’t tell him that because he thinks he’s about half that age. Dana is looking forward to her dressage test and says that Rover is well settled in and ready to go.

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