Florida Horse Park—–

Gus and I had a great weekend at the Florida Horse Park.  Friday we did our dressage test in the hardest rain imaginable.  It was raining from 8am-5pm or so, and 40 degrees was about the high for the day.  We all looked like drowned  rats with white, see-through, breeches on.  White breeches are not a good look for anyone, but add about 25 gallons of water, and you have a look that is darn near punishable by law.   Aside from the terrible weather and the sloppy arena footing, Gus did about as well as I could have ever expected.  We ended up with a score of 34.7 (65.3%) which put us into 7th place out of 35 riders in our Open Training Division.  I was absolutely thrilled with the results because I was competing against several former (and future) olympians and big trainers. 

We had much better weather for the second day of competition.  It was in the high 50’s and sunny when my Wetherbrooke girls showed up from Ohio to watch Gus and I do stadium.  I was soooo happy to see faces from home.  They drove for all those hours, through all that terrible weather to come support us at our first Florida show.  I felt so loved!!!  It was great having them here, and I even got to serve Elizabeth breakfast in bed on Valentine’s Day.   For those of you that don’t know her—-she is one of my all-time favorite students that I just love to torment!  Anyway, Gus and I had one rail down in stadium, which dropped us down to 11th place.  I wasn’t even upset about the rail because he had warmed up so well, and we put in a great round. 

Sunday could not have been more perfect.  It was 65 and sunny.  I had been really worried about a few combinations on the x-c course when I walked it.  Gus jumped around like it was effortless.  He was fantastic —except for the part where he climbed a fence into the water—- the rest was beautiful.  I even got to talk to Bruce Davidson Sr. after I crossed the finish line.   It was really neat to see all those famous riders and horses all in one place.  Karen O’Connor parked her trailer near ours.  Buck and Bruce were warming up while I was.  Leslie Law was my trainer and walked my courses with me.  I am in heaven.  Gus and I ended up in 9th place out of 35.  Leslie, of course won—as it should be.

Today I had the day off.  Tomorrow is our “light hack” as Leslie calls it.  Then it’s back to business on Wednesday.

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