Friday, July 24, 2015

Slightly distracted and Officially Bitten

So, this past week has been the start of the big Event here in my hometown. It literally called The Event at Rebecca Farms. It a 3 day event that started about  13 years ago by a local family who was very involved in the sport. Since then, it has grown to impressive levels. It is now deemed one of the top cross country courses in the US.  Riders from all over the country fly in with horses to attend this event. It's also an Olympic Qualifier. This year they added an international level 3 Star division. It's a big deal, really. One of the top riders in the US is in attendance this year,  Buck Davidson (and my hubby got to meet him and talk to him.. and he didn't even realize who he was at the time.. GRRRR!!!) It is spectated  by well over 20,000 people each year plus most of the riders bring in multiple people and/family and turn it into a vacation.  You can imagine what that does to the traffic here which is already horrendous for our little town that doesn't have the infrastructure to support it.Our little town bursts at the seams for a couple of weeks.

Over the years, we often went out to Rebecca Farms to watch a few hours of dressage or cross country and wander through what seemed like endless vendor tents. Its always exciting and fun to attend.  I usually know a couple of riders and try to watch their go, cheer them on and pray they don't crash on X-country. There was one year a well respected trainer from the northwest ended up badly injured. She passed away as a result of her injuries. It was definitely sad and scary.

This year we have had the opportunity to be a little more involved behind the stages of the Event because of the work T is doing for a local Eventing trainer (the same one I am taking lessons with). This year, we know alot more of the riders and the horses in attendance at the Event because T has worked with several.  One of those horses competed in the 5 year old division  It was exciting to see how far this horse has come in such a short time. 6 weeks ago, the horse wasn't allowing anyone to even get on him without a huge bucking fit. Yesterday, he took 5th place. He went clean in Novice Cross Country and his dressage score was a 28.8. Impressive.
It's been fun watching scores  and seeing those riders we know (and their horses) do well. Its definitely a different experience to be on the back side of things, at the barns , as opposed to being a spectator.  What has been most striking to me is seeing some of the people who are riding in this . I have always had this preconceive notion that in order to compete at a show like this, the rider and horse really had to have everything perfect.  That isn't really  the case. While there are alot of top riders here , there are just as many  novice riders, junior and adult,  that are out there doing it.  I found myself thinking several times, "if that person can do it, I could certainly do it". I guess I have officially  been bitten... I might make this one of my top goals for 2016 . We will have to see.
In the meantime, Saturday I will take my mom out to watch on Saturday and enjoy a few hours away from the party planning chaos and stress!

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