Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Happy Horses

Sorry about the lack of posts last week by the way, busy week at work.  So now for the updates:

Tucker has been turned out for a week now, and is definitely starting to feel like himself again.  He's been a much more pleasant horse to be around.  The first few times he went out, we gave him some Ace just to make sure he wouldn't go bananas and hurt himself, but after that he was content to graze and visit with the other horses across the fence line.

I've ridden him four times now, and that is going well too.  I can't tell you how good it feels to be back on my horse again.  It was like my whole body breathed a sigh of relief as soon as I swung my leg over and looked down to see my favorite view:

I can't explain it really, but this horse just feels like home to me.

The first three rides were at the walk, and I did my best to make it interesting for him.  The first two times, I gave him a 1/2 cc of Ace just to take the edge off, and realized the second time that I didn't really need it, but I just wanted to be sure -- again to avoid injury (either to him or to me).  During our walking rides I alternated between working walk and moseying along on a long rein, extended walk, collected walk, leg yields, serpentines, spiraling in and out circles, etc., just to try to keep his mind busy and get his parts moving.  He pretty much thought this was a complete snooze-fest, but complied nonetheless.  I thought I would be bored too, but surprisingly 30-40 minutes went by in a blink.  Amazing how much I missed riding my horse -- it's been two months since he's done much more than walk, and almost three weeks since I've sat on his back.

Last night we trotted for the first time.  We did about ten minutes at a working walk, then trotted two or three times around, with a couple of circles thrown in,  then back to the walk for ten minutes, then trotted the other way, and then cooled out.  Believe it or not, he was huffing and puffing after just this little bit of work, but it was really warm last night so I'm sure that had something to do with it. 

He feels great.  Nice and relaxed, forward, not too stiff (though he was pretty stiff the first couple of rides at the walk), and very, very happy to have a job again.  I had a crazy moment right before I started trotting where I got worried about whether or not he was sound... but of course he is, and I was just being paranoid.

I have never met a horse that looks more pleased with himself after he works. I hope I captured it well enough in these photos, but my horse was downright cheerful after our ride last night. He absolutely loves having a job.

(Does this expression remind you of another photo?)

He's getting nice and shiny too, which I love.  Guess that's what happens when all you can do is groom for two months!  He looks so darn skinny though, I hate that.  He definitely lost muscle in his neck and his topline, and probably dropped a little weight just from the stress of stall rest.  He is a hard keeper and drops weight really fast.  All this nice spring grass will hopefully help take care of that though.

His leg is looking really good, it's healing a little more every day and doesn't seem to bother him at all.  Here's the progress:

Much better than the way it was before, huh?

And Miss Julie is doing well too.  We wanted to quarantine her since she came from so far away, just to make sure she wasn't sick and wouldn't be bringing any foreign bugs to the other horses.  So, she's been a little cranky about being stuck in a stall, but she's starting to go out now, so that should settle her right down.  She's been very well behaved about hand-walking and grazing so my guess is she just doesn't like the idea of being stall bound (can't say I blame her).  I helped Allison groom her last night and she seemed to enjoy it, although she needed some gentle encouragement that the show sheen bottle was not going to hurt her.  She got over it quickly with some patting though, and appears to be very smart.  She is very affectionate and likes to groom you back when you scratch an itch for her, which is very sweet.  Here she is greeting me when I pulled into the barn last night:

Sorry about the bad photo quality and the glowing eyes, but I thought her expression was too cute not to share.  I have some better ones on my camera from the night we shipped her in, so I'll post those soon. 

All in all, two very happy horses... I must be doing something right!

Monday, April 25, 2011

Fluffy Gray Cat: Free to a Good Home

No, not really.  But when I got up at 6:30 this morning to discover what Sterling had done during the night, he would have been free to the first taker. 

It's never a good sign when the first words out of your mouth in the morning are:  "What the #$%^* is THAT?"  It's the kind of morning that only a pet owner can truly appreciate. 

At one point during the night I half woke up to the sound of a loud crash, but figured he was just tearing around the apartment like a crazed lunatic for no reason at all, as per usual, and had knocked over a picture frame.  Given that my usual one-hour drive home from my grandparents' house took a solid 3 1/2 hours with traffic (including an entire hour spent creeping across a bridge), I was tired, so I did not get up to investigate.  Big mistake.

This morning I discovered that the loud crashing noise was Sterling knocking the screen out of the window, through which he spent the night carrying earth worms into my apartment.  Yes, I woke up this morning to find several HUGE slimy, filthy, stinking worms creeping and crawling around on my floor.  One of which he had previously ingested.  I'd have to say, on the list of "Worst Possible Ways to Spend the First Five Minutes of Your Day," peeling earth worms off your carpet is right up there at the top. 

The cats of course spent these minutes trying to trip me and howling because the arrival of their breakfast was delayed during this process.  Which caused me to look up at them in complete and utter frustration, as I scrubbed worm guts out of my carpet, and ask of their desparately starving (overly plump) faces emploring me for food like the children who are actually starving on those info-mecials, "WHY do I even HAVE YOU?"  An hour later on the train, I thought to myself "Did I really spend the morning cleaning up worms?  How can this possibly be my life?"

I try to provide a nice environment for my pets.  Plenty of cushy pillows, cat beds, and comfy perches.  A ridiculously large collection of cat toys.  Things upon which one can sharpen one's claws (of course, they still prefer my couch when I'm not looking).  Plenty of food (though they will tell you otherwise).  A nice clean litter box.  Regular grooming.  And THIS is the thanks that I get.  It really makes me question why on earth anyone would want a cat.  When I see their sweet little faces greeting me after work tonight, I'll probably change my mind.  Until, of course, one of them does something else completely unnecessary and disgusting.

Anyone have any ideas for how to keep a cat away from a window screen?

Monday, April 18, 2011

An HP in DQ Land: My Dressage Lesson

Since Tucker is still out of commission (though the vet is coming to check him today -- cross your fingers), I have been looking for other rides on the weekend.  I've been curious about dressage for a while now, and figured now would be the perfect time, especially since I'm boarding Tucker at a barn run by a dressage instructor (Cindy), who graciously offered to give this hunter princess a dressage lesson. 

I have to admit to a bit of naivety here.  I've probably spent a collective 20 minutes in a dressage saddle in my lifetime, occasionally hopping on in someone else's tack to help a rider get her horse past a spooky corner or something of the sort.  So going into the lesson, I figured how different can it be?  My stirrups will just be longer.  I can adjust. 

Haha.  Haha.  Ha.  About the time I picked up my posting trot, the mare I was on was probably quite confused, and thinking to herself, "You seemed to know your way around tacking up... but... clearly you have never been on a horse before?  Are you okay up there?  Are you having some kind of seizure?  If not, can you please get your feet out of my elbows?"  Cindy had to walk over and put my leg back where it was supposed to be a couple of times.  It didn't stay there.  In fact, I pretty much lost all communication with the lower half my right leg and couldn't tell you what it did for the duration of the lesson.

Now, to state the obvious:  Dressage is completely different.  The seat is different, the leg is different, the hands are different, the posture is almost the opposite of how I normally ride.  My hip angle usually stays closed.  My weight is down in my heel.  My hands follow, all the time.  My shoulders are angled a little forward.  I close my leg with the back of my calf.  I send the horse forward by sending my hips forward.  All this: out the window.

I had the hardest time finding my balance.  And quickly learned that the aids I normally use were close to useless.  It sort of felt like I was speaking Spanish, and the horse was speaking French, and occasionally we'd hear a word that sounded similar and be able to communicate for a brief second.  Then we'd lose each other completely again.  But, thankfully, this mare was very tolerant of my complete incompetence and for the most part tried to understand what I was attempting to tell her, in my bumbling, yet earnest, kind of way.  I did have moments at the trot where I "got it," and they felt lovely.  Brief, but lovely.

Highlights of the lesson:  Upon my first canter depart, I did what I normally do, which is slide my hips forward.  This resulted in ramming a rather sensitive area into the pommel of the dressage saddle, which, er... took my breath away, so to speak.  I then spent the next ten strides or so trying to figure out where the tack had gone and why I was sort of floating and swinging along like a piece of driftwood.  I wondered whether it looked as bad as it felt.  Glance to my left... instructor laughing hysterically.  Excellent.  It looked worse than it felt.  I then tried desperately to find someplace to sit.  Whenever I found it, the mare would break.  I could not for the life of me correct this problem (Cindy explained it was because I was sitting with no strength coming from my chest/core.  Makes sense now).

Then there was the downward transition.  Where I got run away with at the trot.  This is the point at which I realized my position would have been excellent... had there been skis strapped to my feet and a boat in front of me.  Sadly, that was not the sport in which I was participating, and was rather ineffective for the task I was trying to accomplish.  Eventually, the mare got sick of speed-trotting in circles and decided to walk of her own volition, for which I was quite thankful.  Cindy had been trying to get me to move the horse right to left and regain her balance and focus.  I finally accomplished a few steps of this once we had come back down to the walk.  After looking down to verify that my right leg was, in fact, still attached to my body.  Since my brain had apparently completely lost contact with it.

What I learned:  I learned a few things that I can definitely apply toward my hunt seat riding.  First, I tend to twist my torso, so that my right shoulder is always forward.  Cindy advised me to look at the wall whenever this happened (tracking left), and voila - fixed.  Something I am going to continue to do to keep myself sitting straighter.  Second, opening up my chest.  By stretching taller instead of hunching my shoulders, I gain more strength in my core, which gives me more stability and leverage.  I used this on the equitation horse I rode on Sunday and it definitely helped.  This is not a new critique -- instructors have been telling me this for years -- but I did get the feeling a bit better sitting in that dressage saddle, since I basically lost all control when I hunched forward.  Third, the half halt starts from the shoulder (my shoulder).  I love this.  I haven't really thought of it this way, but it makes sense, and I think will provide a more subtle way for me to increase a little pressure on the rein for my very sensitive horse, and I'm always trying to find a way to be more subtle with him.  It also keeps me from breaking at the wrist, which is a terrible habit of mine.  Fourth, my hands need to be more still, steady contact, instead of fidgeting with the bit.  Hard habit to break, but something I definitely need to work on, in any discipline.

Things that are really sore right now:  The tops of my feet (!), my shoulders, the sides of my torso, and especially, the outside of my hips/thighs.  I really don't use these muscle groups when I ride.  I suppose, arguably, I do use my shoulders.  But not quite in the way that I used them on Saturday.  And I definitely don't use the outside of my thighs.  Holy cow.  The first word out of my mouth on Sunday morning was "OW!"  Followed closely by "I'm coming, I'm coming," as I hobbled slowly toward the cat food.

All in all, definitely learned something, and definitely had fun (despite the pain).  How many of you have taken a lesson outside your discipline, and what did you learn?

p.s. -- I'm not holding out on you... Julie's travel plans shifted a little, so she won't be home until Tuesday night.  I'll take lots of pictures, promise!

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Julie's Coming Home!

This post will be short but sweet, because I don't have too much information yet... but just wanted to let everyone know that I just found out Julie is coming home this weekend!  In just a couple of days, I will finally get to lay eyes on my pretty little girl for the first time in almost two years!  I sort of can't believe it....  We've got some planning and arranging to do between now and then, but for now I am just excited and looking forward to seeing her. 

Travel safe, pretty girl!  My, how you've grown....

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

And now... The Reveal

Will the real Tucker the Wunderkind please come forward?



So, side by side, they are not completely twins... but you have to admit, the resemblance is pretty strong.  When Tucker becomes famous, we certainly know who will be his stunt double.  Wait a minute, what am I saying?  Of course Tucker will do his own stunts. 

Without further ado... the answers to last week's blog contest are as follows:

Eye#1:  Tuck
Eye #2:  Tucker
(2 people guessed right)

Ear #1: Tuck
Ear #2: Tucker
(6 people guessed right... my horse does have rather... distinct ears)

Nose #1: Tucker
Nose #2: Tuck
(5 people guessed right)

Mouth #1: Tuck
Mouth #2: Tucker
(4 people guessed right)

Chest #1: Tucker
Chest #2: Tuck
(7 people guessed right)

Tail #1: Tucker
Tail #2: Tuck
(4 people guessed right)

And the winner is....  Kathleen!  Now, I know what you're all thinking.  Isn't that cheating?  Is it fair that Tuck's owner should win this contest?  Shouldn't she be disqualified or something?  Aren't there rules? 

But see, here's the thing:  You can't argue with Kathleen.  Trust me on this.  I try all the time, and I lose (usually, followed by a fit of laughter... and snorting).  It's not easy for a lawyer to admit that someone else is right, but sometimes, even I have to concede.  She (correctly) pointed out that there were no limitations on the contest, and it was open to everyone... so technically she didn't cheat.  She said she won fair and square, and she wants her prize.  As per usual, I couldn't argue with her.

When I realized she had won, I figured I'd have to come up with some kind of second prize, or let Tucker choose another winner, or something.  Just to be fair.  But then, I watched Kathleen and Tuck show on Sunday... and ladies, if you were there to see it for yourselves, you'd want to give them a prize too.  These two are perfect for each other.  They were totally in sync, a true partnership, like they have known each other forever and absolutely belong together.  I was so proud. 

So, I am very happy to be sending Kathleen and Tuck some of Tucker's favorite treats -- Paddock Cake Peppermint Paddies -- which you can purchase here.  Tucker has always loved two kinds of treats: peppermints, and chewy molasses cookies.  These treats combine the two, which Tucker says is the best thing ever to happen to the world of equine goodies.

Please join me in congratulating Kathleen on winning this contest, and on the purchase of such a fabulous new horse.  Imitation is the highest form of flattery, after all. 

Monday, April 11, 2011

It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year....

No!  Not Christmas!  Foaling time! 

Long time readers remember this from last year... here it is again.... live feed from the foaling stall at Norsire Farm!  Krystal is looking ready to have her baby tonight, fingers crossed for a healthy happy bouncing adorable bundle of fun by morning!

I came really close to seeing this baby foal last year, but fell asleep.  Hoping this year I won't miss it!  I just love these live foaling cams.  What a great idea.


Update:  It's a colt!  And he is absolutely beautiful.  Go check him outGuaranteed to brighten up your day.  He is still in the "how the heck do these legs work" and "now where was the food again" stages -- the best part!  I dare you not to squeal and/or giggle and/or coo at him.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Blog Contest: So You Think You Know Tucker?

Let's see how loyal and devoted Tucker's fans truly are (just kidding guys... the fact that you are still reading this shows how loyal and devoted you are, but this will be fun anyway).  Can you guess who-is-who in the photos below?  As I mentioned before, a friend of mine has a new horse named Tuck, and the resemblance does not stop with their names.  They look alike, they act a like, they even ride alike... it's quite uncanny.  We are convinced that our boys must be related somehow... there are certain features that are virtually identical! 

I've randomly named the files below with letters, in no particular order, so right-clicking will do you no good -- all you Nancy Drews out there!  I think this is going to be a tough one.  These guys look so much alike that I actually had to write down which images belonged to which horse.... I can't even pick out my own child in this line up! 

I've been wanting to do something to thank you for all the support and comeraderie you've shown Tucker and me over the past couple of years... so what better way than with a blog contest?  The winner (either whoever guesses them all right, or whoever comes closest... and in the event of a tie, I will let Tucker choose...), will get a prize!  Tucker would like very much to share some of his favorite treats with the other horses out in blog land.  And believe me, he has a long list of favorite treats. 

I'll announce the answers next week, to give you a few days to ponder:

Eye #1:

Eye # 2:

Ear #1:

Ear #2:

Nose #1:

Nose #2:

Mouth #1:

Mouth #2:

Chest #1:

Chest #2:

Tail #1:

Tail #2:

Okay... post your answers in the comments, and tell me which photos are Tucker (or which ones are Tuck, if you like).  Good luck! 

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Product Review: Smartpak Deluxe Turnout Blanket - Lite

Tonight I discovered a new activity you can do with your stall rested horse -- model! 

As a thank you for my review of SmartGut (as well as all my other blog posts about Smartpak), Smartpak offered me a couple of their blankets at a very generous discount.  When I got the news, I was beaming with glee, and didn't waste any time placing my order.  I ordered the Smartpak Deluxe Turnout Blanket - Lite, and the Smartpak Deluxe High Neck Turnout Blanket - Heavy.  Both Tucker's turnout sheet and his heavy turnout had seen better days... in fact, the heavy turnout was sporting some emergency duct tape repairs (charming).  So we were sorely in need of replacements and I have to say I am very happy with our new purchases!  Overall, they are quality blankets, with features that tell you they were designed by horse people.

This first review will be a design and style review, and I'll have to report back on the durability/practicality later, once Tucker is released into the wilds of his field.  As I explained to the Smartpak rep, if these blankets make it through a winter of Tucker's ridiculous antics, they are virtually indestructable. 

As for style, this is a very attractive blanket.  The color is a rich navy with white piping and hunter green trim(the pics below of the surcingle and the fleece wither are the most true-to-life, camera phone can only do so much).  The material is sturdy and strong, and the stitching looks perfect everywhere.  The buckles feel heavy and durable, not like they are going to snap off during the first roll.  The shoulders have a nice nylon lining to prevent rubs, and there is a mesh lining along the back, for breathability.  There are D-Rings around the neckline to attach the Smartpak Deluxe Neck Rug.

And without further ado, our lovely model:

Easily adjustable, sturdy front buckles, placed so there's no gap in the front of the blanket once closed

Good neck countour, no gaps, no tight spots

Generous amount of fleece at the wither,
 and high enough cut that the blanket rests just in front of the wither, preventing rubs

Excellent shoulder-gusset placement

I'm pretty confident these will prevent rubs, because they extend so high up the shoulder

Nice drape overall, no seams at the top (for waterproofness),
and doesn't come down too low, so your horse won't appear to be wearing a dress

Adjustable belly straps, and surcingles have rubber stops, so they won't come undone in turnout
 (which is one of my biggest complaints about Tucker's current turnout sheet)

Optional customization, so there's no confusion about which blankets are yours

Good tail flap coverage -- no one likes a draft!

Elastic leg straps, placed high to avoid getting legs caught when rolling

Many thanks to our beautiful model:

All dressed up, and no place to go....

The Things We Do for Love

There is nothing like treating a horse's injuries to remind us of how much we love them.  So much, in fact, that we are willing to completely and utterly humiliate ourselves in CVS.

I plan to get some elasticon on Thursday, when the tack shop is open later, which I'll use to make an extra large "band aid" over top of my regular gauze (not all the way around the hock, so as not to constrict the joint).  So, I just needed some supplies until then. 

So I found these at CVS (hoofpick included to give you a sense of scale):

These actually fit pretty well over the injured area.  I don't think they are sticky enough to stay on without a standing wrap over top, but hopefully they'll stay in place beneath the wrap better than just a plain piece of gauze (which didn't stay).

Speaking of which, it was looking a bit better today, although I'm not so sure that I want his hock to permanently have its mouth open like this.  While he is not a conformation hunter, I would rather this look a little prettier.  Still, it's better than yesterday. No bleeding today.

Where was I?  Oh yes, CVS.  So, I get up to the counter with my three huge pieces of self-adhesive non-stick gauze, and hand them over.  The guy behind the counter looks at them, looks at me, and asks "Are you okay?"

"Oh, they're not for me," I explain, "they're for my horse."  He eyes me quizzically. "Well they do say 'All-Purpose,'" I say, smiling.  He doesn't get the joke.

"What's wrong with it?" he asks.  He still hasn't started ringing me up.  Apparently, he is concerned that he may have to call the Humane Society or something.  I can see his wheels turning.

"He cut himself," I tell him, hoping that the inquisition is going to end and I'm going to get to leave soon, and actually make use of the self-adhesive non-stick gauze I am trying to purchase. 

"So, shouldn't you like, call a vet or something?"  Suddenly, he is an expert in equine veterinary care.

"She's seen him," I sigh, slightly exasperated by having to defend myself to the CVS cashier.  "He had stitches, and then after we took them out, the wound split open again, so we're just keeping it bandaged while it heals."  Why am I now feeling the need to explain the entire situation to him?  Do I really think this kid is going to call the Humane Society?

At this point, he literally raised his eyebrows at me and sort of shook his head, and proceeded to ring up my order.  By the time I was back in my truck, I was already laughing and thinking about how I couldn't wait to tell this story on the blog.  Judgy McJudgerson at the CVS probably isn't a follower, but just in case: lighten up dude. 

I tried to get some cute pictures of Tucker tonight, but they were mostly fails:

The infamous headless horse

But this is my really cute face...
doesn't this deserve another mint?

I hear the train a comin'
It's rollin' 'round the bend,
And I ain't seen the sunshine,
Since, I don't know when...

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Day One

This is going to be my own little blogging challenge of sorts... how to keep you all entertained when my week consists of grooming my horse, in his stall.  Then again, I am the proud mother of one of the goofiest horses in the world.  We can probably still keep you amused.

Tucker was actually in very good spirits when I got to the barn today.  He was very happy to see me and really enjoyed his extra long grooming session.  A guy can still look good, even if he's on stall rest, right?  He has finally decided to shed as of last week, so I got to work currying away his clipped winter coat, and I can already feel a soft, smooth spring coat working its way out.  Can't wait until our mousey brown/gray color is gone until next winter! 

So first, the cute pics.

Let's see... Pretty sure there are mints in here somewhere....

Ha! Mom's jacket!  Definitely mints in here!
(My jacket was flung through the air moments after this photo was taken)

"Somewhere out there...."
[cue Disney music]

mmmmm... salty....

The first casualty of the week. 
There were no holes in these bell boots 24 hours ago.
(These have since been removed.  I think rubber is likely harmful if swallowed.)

And now, the gross pic:

Not supposed to look like this!

And all bundled up for the night.

The End.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Sorry Tucker...

Ick.  I got a call from Allison on Sunday that Tucker's cut wasn't looking very good.  She sent me a picture and it was definitely split back open, and bleeding a little.  Not good.  I had cleaned it out on Saturday and was already concerned that the flap wasn't adhering, which was allowing tiny debris to get trapped in the cut, a recipe for infection.  But I cleaned it out and slathered with triple antibiotic, as instructed, and hoped for the best.  Apparently at some point on Saturday afternoon/night he must have rolled in just the right way and torn the cut back open again.  Ugh. 

I was with my family celebrating my grandfather's birthday, so this news was met with a lot of "why is that horse of yours always getting hurt?" and "does this mean you are leaving now?  We haven't even sat down to dinner yet." and "what's this going to cost you?"  Very difficult to hold your tongue in these situations, isn't it?  You want to snap back something about how your horse actually in the grand scheme of things does not hurt himself too frequently, and we should all just be happy this injury is so minor, and I don't really care what it costs me as long as he is okay, and yes I very much would like to go take care of him but I know it would only further alienate you all from my horse so I'll just stay here and stare at my phone all day, okay?  ...But then you realize your grandmother is 88, and she's really very sweet, and she just wants to spend the day with you.  So you hold your tongue, and play nice, and pretend your mind isn't elsewhere all day.

I texted my vet (who is awesome, and very accessible for these kinds of things), and sent her the picture above, and asked if there was anything we could do, and whether she needed to see him.  She said there wasn't really anything to be done (we can't restitch it at this point, since there's not enough skin to debride), so no need for an emergency Sunday vet call.  But, she wants him in his stall for the week, no turnout, no handwalks, no riding... a little hand grazing if he can stay quiet.  Basically, she wants him to walk as little as possible, because every time he moves his leg, he prevents the cut from closing.  She also wants us to keep it wrapped so it stays clean, but advised that the hock area is very sensitive to tight bandaging, so be sure the bandage is lightly applied. 

So I texted Cindy (my other barn manager), explained our vet's instructions, and apologized.  My horse is once again going to be the most obnoxious kid in the barn this week, so I promised wine.  Lots of wine.  Then Allison and I talked again, she agreed to take care of the wrapping, and I told her where all the supplies are located in my trunk (triple antibiotic, nonstick gauze, standing wraps).  Despite the frustration of not being able to be there myself, I really was grateful to have someone there who I trusted to take good care of him.  Here is her excellent wrapping job:

Now how is that for service?  Not only takes care of him, but sends you photographic evidence too?  Such peace of mind for a neurotic mother like me. 

Sigh.  I'm really sorry Tucker.  This week is going to suck.  But it's only a week (hopefully), and although you don't know it, you could have it much, much worse.  There are horses who have hurt themselves and then ended up stuck in their stalls for months at a time.  Just imagine that (I know you can't).  And please, please try not to destroy the barn or drive anyone nuts.  I know it won't be easy... but could you try to remember your manners, for me?

Now, off I go to check out Brooke's facebook post about 101 Things to Do with Your Stall Bound Horse.

Friday, April 1, 2011

USHJA Hunter Derby - Live Feed - Updated

***Update below***

As you all know, I am a huge fan of the hunter derbies... and just want to make sure that you all know that you can catch the live feed of this year's $50,000 USHJA International Hunter Derby in Wellington.  The broadcast starts at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday.  Who needs to go out on a Saturday night when you've got entertainment like that?  (I'll be at a wedding though, so I'll have to watch the video some other time.)

The link for the live feed is here.

And for your viewing pleasure, here is a video of the winning round from last year, and the victory gallop:

Louise Serio and Castle Rock:

The top 25 riders and horses from last year's derby are below.  Many on this list are on my list of favorites (Summer Place, Brunello, Jersey Boy, World Time, Early Applause), and I'm sure we'll see some repeat performers. 

1. Castlerock, Louise Serio, Bryan Baldwin: 205
2. Taken, Kelley Farmer, Nancy Amling: 204
3. Summer Place, Scott Stewart, Fashion Farm: 203.5
4. Namesake, Maggie Jayne, Pony Lane Farm: 193.5
5. Topsider, Caroline Weeden, Margaret Shank Benjamin: 192.25
6. Travino, Patricia Griffith, Heritage Farm: 191.5
6. Due West, Shane Sweetnam, Popish Farm LLC: 191.5
8. Brunello, Elizabeth Towell Boyd, Caroline Clark Morrison: 190.5
9. Listen, Kelly Farmer, Jane Gaston: 189
9. Allejandro, Katherine Dinan, Katie Dinana LLC: 189
11. Sander, Kelsey Thatcher, Pony Lane Farm: 188
12. Jaded Palace, Schaefer Raposa, Pine Hollow Stables: 186
13. Declaration, Scott Stewart, Fashion Farm: 185
14. Borealus, Katherine Dinan, Katie Dinan LLC: 183
15. Peridot, Tamara Provost, Stephen Martines: 182.5
16. Rex the Wonder Horse, Kris Killam, Moral Masuoka: 182
16. Jersey Boy, Jennifer Alfano, SBS Farms Inc: 182
16. World Time, Victoria Colvin, Scott Stewart: 182
19. Avalon, Lyman Whitehead, Visse Wedell: 180
20. Maui, Tiffany Cornacchio-Morrisey, Gate Goodman: 179.5.
21. Early Applause, Kelsey Thatcher, Pony Lane Farm: 178
22. Valedictorian, Lillie Keenan, Chansonette Farm LLC: 176
23. Sublime, Kelsey Thatcher, Pony Lane Farm: 174
24. Felicci, Alexandra Vespico, Alexandra Vespico: 173
25. Croquet, Caroline Weeden, Karen Lackinger: 170
25. Bella Blue, Maggie Jayne, Pony Lane Farm: 170

I just love the names of some of these horses!  So creative, so catchy, so appealing.  I wonder if "Rex the Wonder Horse" and "Tucker the Wunderkind" would be friends....


Since this post is getting so many hits, I figured I'd update this post with a link to the video of Jennifer Alfano's winning round on Jersey Boy.  Here you go! 

What a beautiful trip.  I watched it again, and again, and again....

So far, the only results listed are Jersey Boy's Champion and Empire's Reserve Champion, ridden by Scott Stewart.  I'll update again once all the results are in!