Friday, October 8, 2010

Frank is home!

Been so busy telling you of my WEG adventures that it occurred to me that I forgot to tell you that I brought Frank home.

No problem in trainerville, I just wanted to ride him more than twice a month. See my trainer moved South to a more affordable barn for him and that meant a two hour trip one way for me to see Frank. I did it for a month and decided that it just wasn't going to work for me right now. I mean this is the prettiest time of year to ride and I was missing not seeing him. So, I went barn hunting for a new place for Frank. You would think that living in horse country it would have been an easy task,
not so. Most of the boarding facilities here are for hunter jumpers or dressage riders, mention that you rein and oh boy you might as well have said you were a terrorist! I think that these people thought all I did was spin and slide all day.
Sad for me to realize how little as horse people we know of each other's disciplines.

I did find a barn thanks to the help of one of my co workers and it is only 11 miles from my house. It is a saddle bred barn and yes Frank does look out of place there. The owner however, is a delightful lady and adores Frank and the fact that we do reining. It is something she apparently did in college as a younger girl. The barn is mostly her rescued Saddlebreds that she uses to teach lessons on. Frank is definitely the only quarter horse and the only one ridden western. The students all love Frank and he is enjoying all the attention from the little folk. They turn him out for me in the afternoon and remark at what a gentleman he is.

This week my young ones were on fall break and Dad was kind enough to take them on the road with him to work. That meant a delicious week to myself! I went out and rode every night this week! I am proud to tell you that I have finally got the lead change down and am feeling very good about our progress together as a team. I have a friend coming down on Monday which I am off and we are going trail riding! I will try and get some pictures to share with you.

Happy trails......

Monday, October 4, 2010

Some pictures from WEG

Been trying to get back to blogging and I just can't fit it in most days.

Still in the middle of WEG here. I have enjoyed watching some of the venues. I caught some Dressage the other day and watched the cross country this weekend with spectacular horses and riders. But my biggest thrill so far has been watching the individual competition of Reining!

My work was nice enough to provide tickets to me for the individual finals last Thursday. I made the mad dash across the grounds to the indoor arena in record time!
I got to watch the entire competition and the house was packed! I had great seats
2nd row in fact! My fellow co worker from the IT department was there and had his camera, you guys can thank IAN for these wonderful pictures I am gonna share. Of course he did not snap to many as we were engrossed in watching the competition.
All four Americans qualified for the individual finals, they were later in the competition. The caliber of these horses was phenomenal I tell you, everyone was riding to win!

The first rider was Tim McQuay on a beautiful palamino and he took the lead with a 222 score. Here is a shot of him.

We were ecstatic that USA had taken the lead but there were many runs yet to go.
next up was Craig Schmersal and he let it fly I tell you these guys held nothing back! Check out this slide!

Next up was Tom McCutcheon another Texan for team USA. Right from his opening stop I could tell he was in it to win it. This horse was spot on folks. His stops were blazing and his fast circles were amazing, had me holding my breath. He rocked the house and finished with a 228! Here is his opening slide!

We had one final rider to go and that was Shaun Flarida and his beautiful stallion.
Midway through his performance I could tell something happened. I saw Shaun reach out for his saddle horn to steady himself after the lead change. He finished his pattern but I could tell he was not asking the horse for much. We found out after his run that his stirrup leather had broke and he was riding with one stirrup. His score was a disappointing 207.5. He was favored to win and I really felt for him when this happened. I did not get any pictures of his run unfortunately.

So when the dust cleared and the scores were tallied, USA won gold and silver with Tom McCutcheon and Craig Schmersal! I stayed for the medal ceremonies and must tell you I was moved when they raised the flag and played our national anthem. A definite great day in my life!

I am going to try and watch some vaulting and combined driving this week and will of course keep you posted.

happy trails......