Because John called me a massive slacker I decided to hold out another 12 hours to submit my training session tidbits. So there, John. – Yesterday marked the end of the first Ocala training sessions. Sadly, there were no cheese sandwiches and my camera did not make it in the mail… John?
Everyone seems like they are in good spirits and have a game plan. The US horses looked great. I would have to say the winner of the Best Turned Out at the USET Ocala Training 1 was most definitely Manoir De Carneville. (This award is determined by a select group of completely objective and unbiased voters). People keep asking me where his hipbones went, and keep telling them it’s an old Kepferle family secret. Speaking of red heads, I think I am in love with Kylie Lyman’s chestnut Garrison Flash. He looks like an exciting horse for the future. Kylie, if you ever feel like switching careers, G-Money Flashizzle (as I like to call him) has a place in my barn.
Sara Ike was all smiles as she cruised around on her golf cart on official business and The Cpt. exclaimed a lot of “super!”s, “well ridden”s, and “Ya-ah”s as he piaffed across center line in his paddock boots. I did see a few Canadian moles trying to extract secrets (oh, was that just David surveying his property?)
Thursday night the O’Connor’s generously hosted a team bonding dinner. Sharon Will, owner of Absolute Liberty, was kind enough to provide burgers which Papa DOC grill-mastered for all to enjoy. A BYOB event, most of the owners and riders tastefully brought their favorite wines and beers. Hannah Sue, however, beat up a high schooler and took their Mike’s Hard Lemonade with a Raspberry twist to bring to soiree. Keepin’ it classy here in SloCala! Discussions of the evening ranged from London 2012 to Monday Night Boxing (which is about to be overtaken by event riders) to “Have you tried the Cucumber Vodka?”. Unfortunately, all very classified information so I will have to leave it at that. I can say that no one got pushed in the pool (since when does, “I have my phone in my pocket!” warrant immunity to a quick dunking?) and everyone was in bed by 10.
The CPT has left the Americans to get to work, but those Canadians were still at it this morning. Sinead and I took a pair to go gallop conveniently during Rebecca Howard and Selena O’Hanlon’s XC school. Both horses and riders looking fit and happy to be jumping some solid fences!
Needless to say there is an excitement hanging in the air around Ocala – infectious to horses, riders and spectators alike! If anyone has the chance to stop by training sessions in Ocala or Aiken this winter, I urge you to do so – Not just for the sandwiches, but you may just learn how to “Ride like a Ty-Ga”.
That’s all for now. I’m going to go back to being a slacker (AKA: running an event barn).