Thursday News & Notes from Ecogold

The only 5* set in a city center. Photo via Adelaide Equestrian Festival Facebook.

We’re just a week out from our first 5* of the year, which surely calls for a massive eventing high five! ✋

That’s right, this time next week the high flying horses and riders of the Aussie and Kiwi eventing scene (and their canines – yes, there is a ‘Dog Jog’, of course) will be strutting their stuff at the First Horse Inspection before embarking on the only 5* event to take place in a city center. It really is a sight to behold so it’s great news that those of us not able to make the trip can watch along on H&C+ (subscription required).

Mike Etherington-Smith is the man in charge of the cross country course – here’s what he has to say about designing in an Olympic year, making things fair to the horses, and whether he’ll be ‘mean Mike’ when it comes to the finishing touches:

Adelaide Equestrian Festival [Website] [5* Entries] [Schedule] [Scoring] [Live Stream]

Close on the heels of the Aussie offering, Defender Kentucky Three-Day Event kicks off in just two weeks time. Could we be more excited?! Hard no on that front, for sure. We’ll be bringing you MUCH MORE on this – you know it! – but for now, here’s Jay Hambly, assistant to course designer Derek di Grazia, with his insights into Derek’s designing:

Defender Kentucky Three-Day Event [Website] [Entries] [Schedule] [Tickets] [Scoring] [Live Stream] [EN’s Coverage]

We’ve got a big couple of weeks coming up, so lock on to EN, buckle up and go eventing!

U.S. Weekend Preview

F.E.N.C.E. H.T. (Tryon, SC) [Website] [Entries] [Ride Times] [Volunteer] [Scoring]

Longleaf Pine H.T. (Raeford, NC) [Website] [Entries] [Ride Times] [Volunteer] [Scoring]

Unionville Horse Trials (Unionville, PA) [Website] [Entries] [Volunteer] [Scoring]

Spring Bay H.T. (Lexington, KY) [Website] [Entries] [Ride Times] [Volunteer] [Scoring]

Twin Rivers Spring International (Paso Robles, CA) [Website] [Entries] [Ride Times] [Volunteer] [Scoring] [Live Stream]

International Events

Barefoot Retreats Burnham Market International (Norfolk, UK) [Website] [Entries] [Ride Times] [Volunteer] [Scoring] [Live Stream]

North Holland Horse Trials (The Netherlands) [Website] [Entries] [Scoring] [Live Stream]

Thursday News and Reading

Kiwi Chef d’Equipe Jock Paget has both eyes on Paris as things start to get serious in selection meetings. Managing a team that has potential Olympians based in both hemispheres can be tricky, but it’s an enviable state of affairs when a country has so many options. Jock talks training schedules, his role in selecting the team, and the positive vibe in the Kiwi camp as they embark on the road to Paris.

Staying with the Kiwi cohort, this week’s edition of the USEA Podcast talks to two New Zealand riders who are vying for Kentucky glory. Matthew Grayling traveled to the States with his ride, Trudeau, in cracking form – on the back of three consecutive wins, no less – and made his debut on US soil at Carolina this spring. Monica Spencer made the trip last year and has burst onto the American eventing scene in fine fashion, taking 7th at Maryland 5* and 5th in the 4*-S at TerraNova last month. They’re both up for the big one at Kentucky. Listen in as they join the Defender Kentucky Three-Day Event preview show with stand-in host Rosie Russell. If you’re wondering where regular host Nicole Brown’s at, she’s been busy at home welcoming her new baby boy. Many congratulations to the Brown family from all of us at EN!

Eventing’s making a comeback in the Caribbean. The sport faced a serious downturn in Jamaica during the 1990s, but thanks to the FEI Solidarity initiative it’s back, with the first FEI competition in three decades being hailed as a new and exciting start for Jamaican eventing.

This is a really interesting – and enlightening – read. When horses display unusual behavior, it’s our job to work out what they’re communicating to us. This article looks at the ways physical pain shows up, or in some cases, doesn’t, as well as considering the psychological and ethological needs of horses that are often overlooked, albeit often with good intentions. The things we do to keep our horses safe can turn out to be more harmful than the perceived danger. None of us want to think that we’re not meeting the needs of our horses, but it’s a question we should be asking of ourselves often. This piece is a good starting point.

Hey buddy, got enough space there? Teaching my horse to stay out of my space has been a crucial lesson for us, and learning it has made all the difference in almost every other area of his training. This is my space, you stay outside. But I get to come into your space (for snuggles etc.) whenever I want. It sounds harsh, but being consistent with this has really improved my relationship with my guy – he knows where he stands, literally, and that makes him a whole lot happier than when he was so insecure he had to step on my toes to feel safe. Here’s how to go about showing your horse how to stay out of your space.

Sponsor Corner

Want to add a dose of adorable to your day? Check out amazing duo Finn and Quinn as they tackle a grid– hands-free! They’re using the new Ecogold saddle pad from the Pony Collection. Shop for yours here and get FREE shipping with code “EN”.

Video Break

Here’s a throwback to last year’s Maryland 5* and the $1 horse who came 5th in his debut at the top level. Mia Farley and Phelps are headed to Kentucky and we can’t wait to see them doin’ their thang at the Horse Park in a couple of weeks.

For now, enjoy this clip of their time at Maryland. You’ll find the full video here.

4 1 vote
Article Rating
Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments