Ocala, FL (September 16, 2010) – Chester Weber, the United States’ reigning National Four-In-Hand Combined Driver, turned up the intrigue on the exciting and challenging world of Combined Driving when he was interviewed on the radio show “Horsetalk With Heather” on September 14. Weber is part of the United States Combined Driving team that will compete at the upcoming 2010 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games in Lexington, Kentucky.
Radio show host Heather described Weber as a “Combined Driving legend and King of the Chariot,” while interviewing the Four-In-Hand Champion. Weber did his part to uphold that status earlier in the year when broke his own record by becoming the first driver to win the National Championship eight years in a row. With the goal of winning the National Championships behind him, Weber is now preparing for the wild ride of competing at the World Equestrian Games.
While on the radio show, Weber described Combined Driving as a “Ben Hur-like” ride, and not only described the work involved in preparing seven horses for competition but also talked through the three different phases in the competition, dressage, the marathon and cones, and the equipment needed for each phase.
Your horse is perfectly justified in coming off the bit if all you do is give the aid for a transition. To do transitions on the bit, you need to give two sets of aids at once: the transition aid and the aid to tell him to stay on the bit — the connecting aids. When you give these two sets of aids at once, you’re telling your horse to do a transition on the bit.
Essentially, you’ll superimpose the connecting aids over the aids for a transition. That is, you’ll give the connecting aids before, during, and after the transition.
In this case, the connecting aids last several seconds. Apply them lightly before, during, and after the transition so that you “bridge” the transition with your connecting aids.
It was all about the upper levels today at the 2010 Land Rover/USEA American Eventing Championships. Five divisions including Advanced, Intermediate, and all three Preliminary divisions show jumped today in the beautiful arenas at Chattahoochee Hills.
The Advanced show jumping was the first to go in the Grand Prix arena this morning. The WEG Short Listed riders who did not run cross-country yesterday show jumped both before and after the actual competition which created a different atmosphere in the arena. After the dust settled, overnight leader Becky Holder and Courageous Comet knocked only a single rail during the Marc Donovan designed course. However, they had a rail in hand over the two competitors nipping at their heels, Nate Chambers and Will Faudree, and the experienced pair remained gracefully atop the leaderboard.
“I’m so proud of him,” sighed Holder happily after her round. “The show jumping has always been rough for me. I always get rattled in there and get in a hurry… but we’ve both come a long way.”
9 September 2010 – The Fédération Equestre Internationale (FEI), the governing body of horse sport, is to unveil an innovative photographic celebration of equestrianism entitled Inspire at the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games in Kentucky, USA.
Inspire brings together 16 images of inspirational equestrian legends and young talents who represent all the equestrian disciplines on the programme of the FEI’s four-yearly flagship event. Athletes from Jumping, Dressage, Para-Equestrian Dressage, Eventing, Driving, Endurance, Vaulting and Reining are shown in surprising and eloquent contexts, many of which incorporate subtle or playful references to their disciplines. Most of the images unite two people in rural or urban backdrops and highlight the bond of admiration and inspiration between them.
The origins of the athletes are diverse and serve as a reminder of the geographical spread of the 133 National Federations affiliated to the FEI.
Wellington, FL (September 13, 2010) – The ups and downs of dressage rider Caroline Roffman’s riding and training life are now available for everyone to read about, as Roffman has joined an elite group of equestrians who journal online about their training experiences at Barnby Notes. Roffman is a public notebook contributor for www.barnbynotes.com, joining public notebook contributors and riders Stacee Collier, Maria Lithander, Geena Sturzebecher, Genay Vaughn and soon Tami Hoag.
“As we all know, riding, training, competing and dealing with horses is a roller coaster experience,” Roffman said. “It’s great to look back on Barnby Notes and have a sense of accomplishment and it’s also great to look back and see how you fixed something. I started writing for Barnby Notes before the Young Horse Championships and soon I will be adding my notes from Gladstone.”
Barnby Notes also gives dressage riders the chance to read through notes kept by Lendon Gray, Susanne Hassler, Betsy Steiner, Courtney King-Dye, Beth Baumert and Charlotte Bredahl, just to name a few. Barnby Notes believes that riders need to ride, write and reflect and that the practice of writing down ideas, such as training techniques, increases memory retention by 80 percent.
Traverse City, MI – September 12, 2010 – The sun came out for a gorgeous day in Traverse City, Michigan on Sunday as the 2010 Great American Insurance Group/USDF Region 2 Dressage Championships and Dressage by the Bay Fall Classic concluded their final day of competition. Ending the show with an exciting victory were Katherine Poulin and Brilliant Too who won the FEI Grand Prix Championship.
From Chagrin Falls, OH, Katherine Poulin and Brilliant Too had the highest score in today’s Grand Prix Championship, scoring a 62.766% from the judges, Sandra Hotz at ‘E’ and Gary Rockwell at ‘C’. Judy Kelly and Leonardo finished in second with their score of 62.600%, Amanda Johnson and Pip earned third place honors with a 62.234%, and Brad Cutshall rode Pointjack to a score of 61.277% to finish in fourth place.
Another bumper episode with British Chef d’Mission Will Connell, Kim Severson, Amy Tryon, and Karen O’Connor, plus Pippa Funnell makes her return to the British squad and her debut on the show. Tune in right here.
8 September 2010 – Following the FEI Dressage Committee meeting in Mannheim (GER) on 27 and 28 August, the Committee has put forward proposed changes for the judging system to be presented at the upcoming FEI General Assembly in Taipei (1-6 November).
The proposals are based on several pilot studies that took place during the 2010 season and feedback from within the sport. They are the result of detailed analysis of the fitness for purpose of current judging methods in Dressage with the aim of achieving maximum transparency and fairness and, as a consequence, trust in the sport.
The proposed changes are as follows:
Seven judges (instead of five) for defined events such as Olympic Games, FEI World Equestrian Games, FEI Continental Championships on Grand Prix level as well as FEI World Cup Finals.
Yesterday, a gorgeous new mare moved into our barn. Wowzer… she’s a dish! She was being led down the walkway when I saw a young gelding in the turnout next to me strut and prance and flip his long mane at her. He kept telling her to look over and see how beautiful he is. He nickered and shouted to her that he was the best and smartest horse in the whole barn. When she didn’t react, he hollered at the top of his voice that the rest of us were nothing but old nags unworthy of her. She stopped and turned his direction. I watched her watch him, with great interest. She looked him up and down, flipped her tail at him, and walked off in a huff.
Later, I noticed this fellow was upset and depressed. I strolled over and stood by him, just to keep him company. Eventually he raised his head and quietly asked if I knew why the pretty mare had spurned him. I told him, as gently as I could, that it appeared to me that his superior attitude had turned her off. I shared my belief that when we act like we’re better than everyone else, that same everyone else starts to feel uncomfortable and stops wanting to be around us.
I told him that it’s okay to have confidence, and it’s okay to let our best light shine. But, if we go a step further and act arrogant and superior to our friends and peers, we are intentionally making them feel “less than.” That’s not right. It’s a delicate line between confidence and arrogance. Confidence energy radiates outward and feels good to be around. Arrogance energy sucks inward and is uncomfortable for others to be near.