And just like that the spring season was gone . . .
All the plans.
All the excitement.
All the goals. The calendar now has scratch marks on the days we were meant to travel and nothing more for the rest of the season can be filled in yet.
So here we sit – watching the news, looking at maps, happy we don’t live in the worst hit areas and empathizing with the people that do.
What to do now? We need to keep this glass half full.
Some barns are open and some are shut – hopefully we respect the farm owner’s wishes and take care of fellow boarders and ourselves and take all precautions.
If you are riding, this is a great time to practice the basics. How round can you make that circle? How straight can you get to the jump AND go away from it? How long can you go without stirrups? It’s also a great time to get outside as the weather gets better and go for a long walk. We have to remember that it is still five weeks (at best case scenario) before any horse goes out the start box. We need to pace ourselves – this virus, unfortunately, is a marathon, not a sprint.
Some have chosen this time to give their horses some time off. The crews that are lucky enough to be in California or South Carolina or Georgia or Florida have already had a mini season. These horses have earned a bit of downtime.
Some people have made the decision not to ride. Riding is dangerous and if we do fall off that could take up another hospital bed for someone that is sick, but those horses still need care and movement and turnout.
What is important for ANY of these horses is to make sure when the end is in sight, we are ready to roll. Horses and riders are fit enough, shoes are on schedule, vaccines are done, teeth are floated, trailers are checked, we have practiced, we start back at the right level, and we can do our best for our horses to be successful.
We can make the most of this mini break – without competition we now have time, if we choose, to tidy up all the details and be more than ready when we hear “3 . . . 2 . . . 1 . . . have a great ride!”
COVID-19 Updates from USEA
We know a lot about the athletes representing the USA on our Tokyo team, but what about those essential people, the grooms? Catherine Austen finds out more about Courtney Carson, Emma Ford, Bridget London, and Steph Simpson in this edition of Tokyo Talk.
Ian Stark’s cross-country course resulted in changes among the FEI divisions on Saturday
Cross-country day for the FEI competitors at Rebecca Farm resulted in big changes in the top three standings in the 4* divisions. The current top three riders in the CCI4*-Long all put in double-clear rounds to maintain their dressage scores from the first day of competition.
Phillip Dutton and Z are on the road to Tokyo! Dutton, the 6-time Olympian, is going into his 7th Olympic Games. Dutton’s first three Olympics he represented Australia and helped secure the team gold medal twice (1996 - team gold, 2000 - team gold, and 2004). The 2008 Beijing Olympic Games were the first Olympic Games that Dutton rode for the U.S., and he has been on the U.S. Olympic team ever since. Dutton’s most recent Olympic performance at the 2016 Rio Olympics, he earned the individual bronze medal with Mighty Nice.
Rebecca Farm FEI dressage scores are tightly packed
The FEI competition at Rebecca Farm continued today with the CCI3*-Long, CCI4*- Short, and CCI4*- Long dressage. With scores ranging from the mid-20s to the low 30s, the standings in all divisions are tightly packed.