Hawley Bennett and First Day at Rebecca

Gina Miles working the lovely Chanel with US Coach David O’Connor

Training to ride the ultimate corner – use whatever tools are available!

Loose horse!

And how to catch it…!

Heading for the Novice/Training Three Day Trot-up

The state of California is very well-represented at Rebecca; after all, it’s only a 20-something hour drive! I was thrilled to catch up with one of the State’s most beloved imported eventers, Hawley Bennet to find out why Ginny is here, looking amazing but she’s not riding her?

Hawley stressed how incredibly grateful she is to Sarah and the entire HBEventing crew that are keeping everything running so smoothly; she also got emotional remembering how wonderful Ginny was at Rolex in the Spring, “I just love her so much, it’s killing me not being able to ride” but she’s crossing everything that she can be back in the saddle in time for the AECs so that she can try and win some of the generous prize money on offer there to help fund her Pau trip, and then keep driving East to trainer Buck Davidson and fly Ginny out to France with the US horses from there.  Buck has been a huge help emotionally, Hawley told me, advising her not to take Ginny to France unless everything is absolutely 100%.  As he pointed out to her, at only twelve years old Gin N’ Juice is in her prime and if it doesn’t happen this year, she can just bring her out again in the Spring. Max Corcoran (Hurray, Max is here!) did later confirm that Gin’N’Juice was indeed a bit wild during the trot-up training! Max is here at Rebecca once more for the Long Format Three Day riders, sharing her wealth of knowledge with them and giving them priceless advice.

Double your fun – I was very lucky to be able to sit and chat with Lauren Kieffer while watching Mackenna Shea work her stunning novice horse Bali with David O’Connor. Lauren flew up here just for the day especially to interview for the Rebbecca Broussard International Travel Grant, and has to get back to ride her horses before competing at Millbrook, and after being gone all last weekend at Fitch’s Corner. Good luck to all the competitors who are applying for the grant – just one more way that Rebecca Broussard’s legacy is making a huge difference to US Eventing.

I’ve tried not to harp on about the weather, but please indulge me before I go for the night! It’s very hot, and no, we don’t have the humidity, it’s dry heat, and it is glorious but it’s hot and I’m not even wearing breeches and a show coat. They’re handing out sunscreen in the press room which makes a huge change for me – I’ve been layering on rain wear for most of the year so I’m definitely not complaining, I just wanted to mention it!

Good luck to all the competitors at Rebecca Farm this year – we have a full day of dressage ahead of us on Thursday starting at 8am, as well as the First Horse Inspection for the CCI* and CCI**. I’ll be there most of the day and bringing you lots more here on Eventing Nation. Thanks for visiting and Go Rebecca!


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