The horse Gods open a stall door?
As per my previous post, I am moving on in regards to retiring Archie, and wouldn't you know it in the course of 48 hours since that announcement I have a new horse. She is already here, in my barn, munching on hay after having a little snooze this afternoon. I've already taken her to a show and jumped some cross country fences on her. How did this all happen so fast? Seems to be just another day in the life...
I was inquiring on some horses in my local Facebook Horse for sale groups and a friend of mine who is horse trainer/sales/rider messaged me asking if I was looking for a horse. I told her what happened with Archie and I and gave her the run down of where I was at. Basically looking for a horse I can get out and event now, giving me a year or two more to get William and Parker going well enough to start eventing and hopefully move up the levels. She told me she had a horse coming in to be sold the next day and that she has evented and I should come take a look at her.
The she being Lexi - a 7 year old chestnut OTTB who evented as a 5 year old at the Pre-Training and Training level. She had decent results with her old owner, nothing spectacular but definitely decent being just off the track and quite young. It isn't really known why she was sold, just that it had something to do with her not being competitive enough in the dressage and too strong on cross. Whether that is the actual case or not is hard to know. She then sat in a field for about a year just being taken out now and then for a hack and whatnot.
I told my friend I would come out to see her asap. We looked at some pics of her with her old owner eventing and she looked very game - very sweet over fences. They were not asking much for her which fit in perfectly of my budget of free or almost free. I tried not to get too excited but I was definitely hoping in my mind that all of these pieces could fit together for me and things would finally be going in my direction.
I went to see the mare the day after it went to my friends place. She was quiet and sweet and gave me a fantastic first ride. She was well schooled but certainly missing some key things. It seemed as though she knew quite a bit but perhaps her training was rushed and some basics were lacking. She went around soft on the bit and was very willing. Not spooky, not tense, very pleasant. I popped her over an x and then a small gymnastic and she sure knew her job. She gave it a big effort and was not going to touch those poles. She was easy and fun to ride. Something I have not felt in a long time over fences.
I got off and we cooled her out, I told my friend I would take her and she could consider her sold. I went back the next day and picked her up. I couldn't wait another day, I wanted her to be a part of our life immediately. She was hesitant but not nappy getting on the trailer. Needed a minute or two to think about it and then got on and stood quietly. When she arrived she was noticeable stressed about being in a stall. After being in a field for a year not doing much it is understandable why. The next morning she seemed better and was happy to be turned out. She spent her first day with the boarder Merlin and they had no issue. Merlin at first tried to show her he was going to be boss, but she kicked up her heels and that was the end of that.
|Parker catchin a snooze...all tuckered out.|
|Is it love?|
|I think so...|
That night she was better about being in a stall and I was even able to take her out for a ride. She was SUPER on her ride. She was looking around but still listened, and was fun fun fun. I took her out and popped her over a few logs in the back field and she was acting like she really knew her job. Since I had already entered Archie for a mini event that Sunday and I was planning on scratching, I decided I would take the new girl and do the lowest level to see how she was at shows. It was just a schooling show and the fences would be very small and easy. No better time like the present to see what we got ourselves into.
She went out with Parker the next day and the two of them fell in love immediately. Parker is smitten and she seems very no drama which is a relief for me after owning only geldings for as long as I can remember! I brought her in that night and braided her after my ride. She was much better in her stall, and she stood with her head out and let me braid her while she snoozed. She was proving to be a sweet girl with a personality. I put her to bed with the boys and the next day we were off to our mini event!
Our jumping round was an absolute blast. She knew her job and we sailed around the course - which starts in the stadium, heads out onto a mini cross country course and ends in the stadium ring again - and we ended with a clear round. I was thrilled. This horse is SUCH fun to ride. What a difference to ride a horse like this. I never knew what I was putting myself through until I sat on something fun and stress free again. She is certainly not push button, but she has all the basics to make a great event horse. Could not have found a better match.
We moved up one place to finish in third. Alayne won on her young mare Gracie, and she also won the Training division on Cayden. It was a great day with some great young horses. I am so excited to have something fun that I can go out and compete on again. She needs schooling, but all the pieces are there to work with. I can't wait to take this girl eventing this summer. It's funny how things can just fall into place.
Let me introduce you to the newest member of the Catori Lane crew; "Not Just a Lady" aka Penny.
|Gracie in red.|
Photos copyright A Filly's Best Friend and also Susan Dall Photography. No unauthorized use or copy is permitted.