>"/color>Each horse that participates
on behalf of the owners/riders, (whether they are "mediocre" endurance horses or
horses who don't know the word "quit"), is entitled to perform "their job"
without jeopardizing their present or their future, when, for the most
part, serious injury or death is avoidable."
>I do wish that this was
so easy to judge, even in the perspective of the Ft. Howe horses. The proof,
however, is if these horses can come back and perform again. Unfortunately,
hindsight is the best sight here.
Well, in the case of the Fort Howes horses,
hindsight is pretty clear. They sailed on with flying colors, three of
them to Spain.
I did finally get to see the film last night.
Red and Catch A Wave TROTTING up that hill was incredible--and it baffles me
that someone calling themselves a dressage rider would complain about what Red
was doing, as he was telescoping and lengthening to round his back
periodically--as my husband (way more dressage experience than I have)
commented, they work hard to TEACH dressage horses to do just that. I was
particularly intrigued with Cia and Catch A Wave--Cia rode nicely in all the
other clips, but it looked to me on that last hill and at the finish that it was
Cia that was tired, not the horse! Shahdon walking up the hill was still
tracking up, and Valerie's "urging" him appeared to be the same thing I do
automatically at a walk anyway, which is to gently alternate legs to encourage
length of stride. Both Lois and Valerie pushed all day and got outrun, and
were giving their horses a breather. "Exhausted" Shahdon trotted over the
finish line loose and free, with his ears up. Don't recall if there was
footage of Lois finishing or not. As an endurance rider, I'd be proud and
happy to have anyone see that film. JMO.