Thursday News & Notes from SmartPak

Aiken sunsets! Photo by Chris Talley.

Aiken sunsets! Photo by Chris Talley.

This week, the winter weather finally hit Virginia. We went from 65 and sunny on Sunday to 12 degrees on Monday night. Sorry clipped ponies! Hello to my house and my car being filled with coats and jackets and vests and scarves. The most ridiculous thing about working outside all winter is getting dressed in the morning and looking like the Michelin Man, and then stripping half of the clothes by the middle of the day, only to re-layer by the end, and then collapse into your house at the end of the day. Welcome to my life.

U.S. Weekend Preview:

Ocala Winter I H.T. [Website] [Entry Status] [Ride Times]

News From Around the Globe:

The United States Equestrian Team (USET) Foundation is pleased to announce that it has awarded the 2016 Amanda Pirie Warrington Grant to eventing rider Jenny Caras of Cartersville, Georgia. The Amanda Pirie Warrington Grant is awarded through the USET Foundation Amanda Pirie Warrington Fund. In 2015, 19-year-old Caras, with her talented mount Fernhill Fortitude, took the eventing world by storm as one of youngest riders in the country successfully competing at the CCI*** and CIC*** level. As the recipient of the grant, Caras will receive up to $5,000 to help offset expenses associated with her training over the next year. Her main target will be to travel with “Forty,” an 11-year-old Irish Sport Horse gelding, to the Bramham Horse Trials in England over the summer. [Jenny Caras Wins Amanda Pirie Warrington Grant]

The US Eventing Association has met the $25,000 fundraising challenge set down by eventing supporter Jacqueline Mars to renew the 2009-2010 Frangible Fence Study. Mrs. Mars had challenged the USEA to raise the money within six weeks, and now that the goal has been met, she will donate a matching $25,000 to the study. Peep our very own David Taylor buying a Eric Bull cross country jump to benefit the cause! [Frangible Pin Study Renewed]

The theme of day two of the Robert Dover Horsemastership Clinic was Forward Forward Forward! Robert Dover, Laura Graves, and George Williams all stressed that the solution to most problems was more forward motion, and it is the first step towards better collection. The riders were also encouraged to check their horse’s reactions to aids as they were riding, and make sure that the horses kept their sensitivity and reaction times. [Robert Dover Day Two]

Hot on Horse Nation: The Bomb Proofest Dressage Horse in History: Part Two

Chris Burton’s four-star winning thoroughbred gelding Newsprint passed away yesterday at the age of 20 from liver disease. The thoroughbred gelding was ridden to win the four-star Australian International Three-Day-Event in Adelaide in 2008, and was second at the Pau 4* in 2011. He was competing at the lower levels since 2013, and was dearly loved by all that he knew. [Liver Disease Claims Life of 4* Eventer]

Lil throwback for ya: