22 October 2007

One For The Horse Lovers

OR: Another Reason I Stunk At The Three Day Event.

To be successful at the Three Day Event, (Dressage, Cross-country, Show Jumping) you needed to have one really big weapon in your arsenal. A good horse. Considering the two main horses I rode were Lemon, a palomino-Appaloosa cross that often lived up to his name, and Fun City, a Standardbred cross with feet the size of dinner platters, a heart of gold but a ‘fraidy cat disposition, was it any wonder I often crashed and burned the first day?

In dressage, you have to look good. The horse has to look good. Together, you have to look damn good. Try looking impressive on the equivalent of a Lemony bleach blonde.




(Me on the infamous "Lemon Drop")

Fun City was a big handsome bay, but I am short legged and we looked mismatched. Not to mention getting a horse with dinner platter feet to do a half pass without tripping over himself. Which he did, once. I could sympathize. Dressage wasn’t our forté. But the big boy could jump. In the arena, out in the fields, over picnic tables and parked cars… ahem.

Lemon could jump, but hated to work at all, resulting in me spending my riding time wondering when the sneak was going to duck a shoulder and plant me face first into a jump. And I’m sure having a horse heave a monumental sigh of boredom then a monumental blast of gas in the middle of the dressage competition didn’t impress the judges either.

But some people do it right. The video shows how the combination of great rider and great horse results in magic. The horse loves her work, without a doubt. This is Danish rider Andreas Helgstrand and his mount Blue Hors Matine. Try and ignore the commentators, who didn’t know when to shut up and just let us watch this horse practically dance to the music. (Video discovered courtesy of Donna G.)

12 comments:

Tracy said...

What beautiful creatures they are! I found myself bopping along to the music as I watched the horse dance. Wouldn't that be fascinating to watch them train for such a performance. You look really good in the pic, Connie! I had no idea the vastness of your talents. Thanks for sharing.

Gabriele C. said...

Pretty horses.

My favourite was a 18 hand black Hanoverian who loved to play Watch the Stars every time I tried to get the headgear on. He also had a way to make his jumping look like he just stumbled over the jumps, but in truth he could hop pretty high. When he wanted. :)

Constance said...

Tracy,

My heels are down and my seat correct. Can't ask for much more than that. *g* Of course that was ***** years ago...

Constance said...

Gabriele,

I had a box in the stable just so I could reach to bridle our "star-gazers". *Cue obnoxious Anonymous comments*

I was a lot braver when I was younger. Now I'm well aware of how much falling off hurts- and can cost!

Carla said...

I thought you did look impressive, and (to my untrained eye) Lemon looks a handsome horse.

Anonymous said...

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Anonymous said...

Connie:

I loved the picture of you on Lemon and the stories about Fun City (especially about the picnic table which I remember). I used to ride with you at Southwinds and still live in the area with a few horses of my own. Your brother mentioned this site and said to give it a look.

Lynne D.

Constance said...

Lynne- Yeah! Someone who remembers the picnic table incident! I was beginning to think I imagined it. :)

Trying hard to remember you. Who did you used to ride? My whole claim to (jumping) fame is Lemon, Fun City, Nightwind, and Junior.

Where did my brother find you? Most people wouldn't admit to knowing him in a public forum...

Anonymous said...

I used to ride with you and Karen B. and was friends with Kathy M. I used to ride and show Hank, Sybil, Maximus Super, Sissy (and Arion when Susie W. was there.) I know your brother as I work at BU and he knows my boyfriend who works there too. The pictures of him are great! I know Kathy M. has the picture of Fun City jumping the picnic table.

Anonymous said...

See,Constance........now you have a nice,friendly "Anonymous"!

Constance said...

How could I forget about Hank! I used to ride him too. Hard to remember people after X years, but my poor foggy memory is kinda remembering now. The picnic table incident, and riding the horses into the pond are what I remember best.

Constance said...

Friendly Anonymous, or big brother Anonymous. Tough call. :)