Wednesday, September 14, 2011

A golden warmblood?!

The horse that I originally called my trainer about, was a cremello Canadian Warmblood. I had a few hold ups on him.... he was only 4 years old, he had been a stallion up until 6 months ago, and he wasn't trained past 1st level.

Side Story: When I was 13, I was the luckiest girl in the world, and my parents must have seen some amazing potential because they flew me, my mom, and trainer out to an AMAZING auction in California. The auction had Hanoverians fresh from Germany. Most were about 3 years old, and had not been in training for very long. There were also tons of mares in foal, and also some yearlings. It was an amazing experience, and I got to ride on tons awesome horses. I ended up getting Anika, a beautiful 3 year old mare, and we grew up together, we trained eachother (with the help of our trainer, haha!), and had an amazing relationship. When I turned about 17, and began thinking about college and boys.... horses were on the back burner, and I am so ashamed to say that I didn't even really get sad when we sold her. It finally hit me my 2nd year of college. I missed riding, I missed dressage, I missed HER.

I tell that story to say this: I have ridden and trained a baby. I was not sure if I wanted to do that again. Also, he was a stallion just 6 short months ago. Mix that with the young age, and you have an almost certain recipe for disaster considering I haven't really been on a horse (for dressage purposes) in about 8 years.

I went ahead and trusted the description of the horse, and set up a meeting. My trainer couldn't come, so we videotaped it. He was nothing like what I imagined. His light colored eyes were actually beautiful. He was calmer than any other dressage horse I have seen, and I was actually able to ride across an open field to get to the arena with out a worry in the world that he would spook.

The biggest problem was that we was TOO lazy! I wasn't wearing spurs or carrying a whip, and I had to kick for every step that we took. My mom even noted that she could ride him... she is happy with slow trots and canters that may break at any step. She is comfortable on those horses, where I like some energy, I like the ability to explode from a corner and lengthen strides. This was not that horse! It just wasn't in his personality!

Here is the video, see for yourself!

The Call.

The first person that I called when I knew that I was going to get back into dressage riding was my trainer, Julie Harkness. I had tried, unsuccessfully, to get back into riding about 2 and a half years ago with out her help. Not that I didn't want it, but just that I knew that what she had access to was not what I could afford. I rode him a handful of times, but that horse definitely had some issues!

Well, I called her up, told her that I was beyond excited to start riding dressage again, and she excitedly told me that just a week ago she had decided to sell her horse Phaedra. You don't understand.... I have known Phaedra since her birth, and watched as Julie trained her, fell in love with her baby, and dreamed of riding the massive beauty. 

I actually had already been online horse shopping, mainly just for fun. I found a very pretty gray Hanoverian in Montana. To me, Montana doesn't feel far and foreign because my family lives there. When my parents told me to start looking in Texas, I realized that this is very much for real, and that a horse from Montana would tack on about $5000 in extra cost.... travel to test ride, trainer commission to also look at her, and horse travel expense back home. 

After I began searching near my hometown, I found a beautifully odd cremello horse about 45 minutes out of town. He was a golden Canadian Warmblood, and had unique tan/blue/gold eyes. Yes, they were very different.

I called my trainer, initially to get her opinion on this cremello horse, but also to ask her if she knew of any horses for sale that may work for me. She squealed and said that she had just decided to put Phaedra up for sale, and I immediately told her I would love to ride her! I hadn't even told her my price range yet... and if all the pieces to my puzzle were not already fitting magically into place.... she was IN my price range. I arranged to ride her Sunday, September 4th. I couldn't even sleep the night before... I know, deep inside I am like a 10 year old!

Here is some video of my first ride on Phaedra:

Next up, was the cremello gelding. I was surely NOT going to rush into buying a horse until I had looked at other options. I was set to ride him the next morning. More to come...... :)