Klass and Maggie August 2007 Photo by Lois Stanfield
Maggie and Klass Aug '07 Photo by Lois Stanfield
Maggie and Klass Aug '07 Photo by Lois Stanfield
After a very busy 2006, Klass and I had to go back to school with our changes. I was not getting the aids correct and as a result, Klass was changing late behind and running out of them. Amy had a heart-to-heart with me that unless we stepped back to correct the changes, we would go no further. That coupled with too many clinics 4 weekends in a row came together to form my own 'perfect storm'.
I had a complete meltdown with my confidence, my goals and my aspirations. Thanks to my wonderful supportive husband, my incredible trainer and friend and my own resolve and determination I refocused and set new goals for 2007.
First and foremost was that I had to become physically fit in order to keep up with my horse and my goals. On January 9th I embarked on journey to becoming a healthier, and happier, person. With the help of a weight loss specialist combined with a weight loss counselor, I have lost 70 lbs as of July 13th. I am well on my way to my goals for weight and fitness.
This combined with lots of lunge lessons (thanks Leggs and LeCross!!!) and riding as many horses as I could has helped my riding tremendously and given me back my confidence. And during this time Amy took Klass back to school with the changes.
Our only set back was while playing in the snow in February Klass strained a suspensory and was off from late February until early June. And he looked like he spent the time sitting on the couch drinking lots of beer :) But Klass is now back in full training and is doing great!
And yes, we are now riding changes much more successfully!! Klass and I showed lightly in 2007 but enough to be recognized as the KCDS AA Third Level Horse of the Year!! We look forward to our debut at Fourth Level in 2008 :)
Only problem we have had lately is that I have had to get all new show clothes....but I don't mind as it is a good problem to have!
1995 Grey Trakehner 16.1 Gelding
I purchased Klass in April 2005 from Amy Larson's mother, Alma Mewhorter. Alma purchased Klass at the young age of 69. At 73, Alma earned her Bronze Medal on Klass having completed all of his training herself. But in December 2003 Alma suffered a stroke while riding During the months following, Klass was boarded with a friend, as Alma?s recovery was the focus. In July 2004, Amy moved Alma and Klass from Wisconsin to Kansas so that she could better care for them. Klass was occasionally ridden but was basically on sabbatical.
In March 2005 Amy and Alma came to a heartbreaking understanding that Alma would never ride Klass again. I had the opportunity to ride Klass and the connection was immediate. Klass was willing, kind and gave 110%. And I also recognized how much he could teach me. So while I was not actively looking for a second horse, the opportunity to own Klass was one I could not pass by. I am very honored to own Klass and continue what Alma started with this special gelding.
2006 - Our debut and the road to earning our USDF Bronze Medal!
Klass and I survive our first show together at the KCDS March Kick-off Show March 18 & 19. The rodeo activities and clowns were a little distracting for us but we both dealt with it. Riding second level, we earned a Dover Medal as the top AA rider in Second Level Test 3 and finished the Reserve Champion at Second Level.
Our second show was Dressage at Longview where we qualified for Regionals at Second Level with several strong rides. Once again we finished Reserve Champion at Second Level. Klass and I are learning about each other and I feel we are growing in our partnership.
We traveled to the Wild West Dressage show in Tulsa the later part of May where we made our debut at third level riding 3-1 each day. On Saturday we earned a 61.9% and our first third level score towards our Bronze. Sunday I tried too hard not to ride too hard and didn't ride hard enough earning only a 57% but I was still very pleased with our effort.
KDEA Spring Show in early June was a very comfortable outing for us. We are both learning how to manage each other and I was very pleased with how well I managed the tension Klass can develop at shows. We had a solid 3-1 ride on Sunday but only scored a 59%. I can see where we need to improve in our video and I am even more determined to progress. We did earn our second Dover Medal as top amateur riding 2-4 on Sunday.
KCDS Summer Days at Longview - hot, hot and hot! Klass and I earned our third Dover Medal as the top amateur riding 2-3 on Saturday. This placed us on the Dover National Merit Award List.
Dressage in the Rockies - We ventured out to Parker, CO for this wonderful show the first weekend in August. Weather was spectacular and the Colorado Horse Park facility is outstanding - check out the pictures below! Klass and I had a very nice 3-1 ride on Friday but only earned a 59.7%. None less determined, we had an even better 3-1 ride on Saturday for Mr Ulrich Schmidt and earned our USDF Bronze Medal with a 60.8%. What a thrill! We decided to focus on 2-4 in our Sunday ride and much to our surprise won a very nice JR/Amateur class. Klass continues to just be the angel horse, energizer bunny and the perfect partner!!
USDF Region 4 Championships and the Midwest Championships were held in September and were a test of nerves as well as our first show in the rain. On Friday I did not ride well in our warm-up class and it was a good kick in the rear that I have to focus, focus, focus. The 2nd Level Midwest Championships were on Saturday and I am very proud of how well I managed my warm-up. I focused on half-halts and keeping Klass on my seat. This resulted in a great ride and we finished a very respectable third place. Judge Dolly Hannon had many wonderful comments but I am very proud of her comments on our organized turn out and outstanding braids! The 2nd Level Regional Championships on Sunday were held in a cold, blowing rain. We definitely found out Klass does not like riding in the rain but I rode well and focused. Much to my surprise, my unflappable horse spooked going around the arena as well as in our test. Even so, we finished a strong 4th on a very tough day.
To finish off 2006, Klass and I traveled to the Green Country show in Claremore, OK to ride 3-3 for the first time. I went by myself so it was also a big test for me to focus and manage my warm-up without coaching. We earned a 61% on Saturday and a qualifying score for the 2007 Regional Championships. Sunday I was nervous and Klass was tense so our ride was not as strong. But we did very well overall and I am proud of our accomplishments this year!!!