Wednesday News & Notes from Ocala Horse Properties

Last weekend eventers went indoors at Saumur in France, and who can blame them given the quite frankly hostile weather we’ve been having this winter. I know that we all love cross country proper, but there’s a lot to be said for indoor activities at this time of year. Watch the full class in today’s Video Break.

Also in today’s news, it’s Bubble Wrap Appreciation Day, and, after winning the rodeo when my horse decided he fancied trying his hand at being a bronc the other day, I’d appreciate being wrapped up in the stuff next time I pony up.

And in another (kind of) relevant official day, let’s take a minute to celebrate our horses’ stripey relations for International Zebra Day. Although not technically from the same family – zebra are actually more closely related to donkeys than horses – there’s no denying that they’re still pretty cool. Check out how the two species compare here.

As always, go eventing!

U.S. Weekend Preview

Galway Downs 2024 Kickoff H.T. (Temecula, CA) [Website] [Entries] [Ride Times] [Volunteer] [Scoring]

Sporting Days Farm February Trials H.T. II (Aiken, SC) [Website] [Entries] [Ride Times] [Volunteer] [Scoring]

Three Lakes Winter I H.T. at Caudle Ranch (Groveland, FL) [Website] [Entries] [Ride Times] [Volunteer] [Scoring]

Wednesday News and Reading

We’ve had some – admittedly, tentative and fleeting – signs of spring over here in the UK which can mean only one thing: Badminton approaches. Find out how things are coming along on site in Jane Tuckwell’s Director’s Blog.

Skipping out on your groundwork? You’re doing both you and your horse a disservice. As a new horse owner, if I had $1 for every time I’ve been told that groundwork is the key to all the niggles I’ve been experiencing, I could rest easy at night knowing my horse could be well fed for at least the next year. It’s all well and good enjoying your time in the saddle, but the real work begins on the ground, and if you put the effort into building a good foundation, you’ll reap the rewards in every other way you spend time with your horse. Australian Grand Prix dressage rider Nicholas Fyffe explains why groundwork is so important and shares three handy exercises you can work on right away.

We all know that what we put into our horses’ feed buckets comes out as poop, but that’s not all… Whenever I go to my feedstore I’m overwhelmed and perplexed at the vast array of different sacks stacked floor to ceiling. So many choices. But taking a pin-the-tail-on-the-donkey kind of approach to picking out a feed isn’t an option – not just nutritionally, but in terms of the massive impact feed can have on behavior too. Here’s a handy guide to what ingredients do what.

All that time at the barn adds up to some pretty neat transferable skills. From cleaning stalls and braiding manes to first aid and being handy with a power tool or two – here’s a look at what trainers think are the most useful barn skills they’ve picked up in their day-to-day activities.

Got yourself a smart cookie? Not sure if your equine pal’s a straight A kind of customer or a class clown? Put them to the test with this fun intelligence test for horses. Apparently I’ve got an Albert Einstein on my hands, which is obviously great when I want him to remember something good, but tricky when it means he’s got the brain capacity to plot multiple ways to use his smarts against me.

And finally, a tale about a horse and a girl. As a first generation horsegirl from a totally non-horsey family, I’m so envious of people who feel that horses are in their blood. For sure, I have horses in my heart, which I’ll take over not having horses in my life at all, and I know that moving forward, my daughter (and potential future grandkids) will be of the horsepeople breed. There’s just something about the love we find at the end of a leadrope, and if you’re looking for a heartwarming read to enjoy with your breakfast, this is for you. (Spoiler alert: it’s a tearjerker so perhaps have a tissue handy.)

Sponsor Corner

Come home to Ocala luxury! This gorgeous home is located on 4+ acres situated in an equestrian community just 4 miles from the World Equestrian Center. Check out this reel from Ocala Horse Properties to get the inside scoop.

Video Break

Here’s Saturday’s indoor eventing from Saumur for your enjoyment. The commentary is in French, so a chance to brush up before Paris, but let’s face it, horse is a universal language, n’est-ce pas?

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