Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Student Success!

Luckily I have many positive things to report since my last entry....

Student Christine Lonsdale performed beautifully at the East Coast Pony Club Championships in the Beginner Novice division. Christine and her adorable pony Magic had a respectable dressage test, and finished the event on their dressage score! I've only been working with Christine for the month prior to championships, and it was incredibly rewarding to hear all of her hard work (both on jumping, conditioning, and on the flat) pay off. I have high aspirations for this pair, I can't wait to see just how far they will be able to go... both horse and rider have so much untapped potential. Hopefully I can get them to do some recognized novice and training events in 2010.

The clinic in Ithaca, NY was absolutely lovely. A friend of mine, Brittnie Chidsey organized the clinic as part of her pony club's summer camp (Red Jacket PC). I had actually met Brittnie last year when we were on the winning team for Show Jumping at the 2008 USPC Champs, and we have stayed in contact ever since (for further information about Champs, see the Chronicle of the Horse article which highlight's Willy's 5 perfect rounds). The days were long, but all of the students were wonderful, and everyone learned something that weekend - I know that I saw a HUGE improvement in everyone. The club was incredibly generous, even taking me out on my first tubing adventure... something I loved doing, but I'm not sure if I could ever do again. I'll stick to jumping 4' solid fences.

I also had the pleasure of teaching for my own club, Green Spring Hounds, all summer. We have such a phenomenal group of both kids, ponies, and parents that Tuesday morning lessons were very much anticipated. As a young instructor, it was incredibly rewarding to see the progress made by each and every student week to week, from the walk-trot-ers to the "big kids" doing double bounce gymnastics.

At the end of the summer, I was able to help long time friend Tammie Monaco with her adorable new pony. Though he has a bit of a lazy streak, with quite a few ground poles and some interesting jump designs, he really started looking like a top notch hunter pony! Can't wait to hear how he is doing!

Throughout the summer I captured the ride on Betsy Hochstein's beautiful young Hanovarian mare, Callie, who has remarkable potential. She is a top-notch mare, and though green, shows much promise for great things. It was incredibly unfortunate that I had to give up the ride to come back down to North Carolina, but Callie is in great hands and I look forward to hearing lots of success stories!