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Smart in the final

Phillip Ralls, Very Smart Smoke get hard-fought Open Bridle win in Gilkerson 'Spectacular'

From Horsetrader staff reports - June 7th, 2012

S. Sylvester photo

Phillip Ralls and Very Smart Smoke win the $5,000-added Sherry Gilkerson Memorial Open Bridle Spectacular, held in Temecula May 18-20 along with the SCRCHA Big Horse Wine Country Classic.

TEMECULA – Phillip Ralls on Very Smart Smoke outdueled Russell Dilday and Brenda Brown to win the Sherri Gilkerson Memorial Open Bridle Spectacular May 20 at Casner’s Ranch.

Ralls victory with Very Smart Smoke (Very Smart Remedy x Lil Brown Freckle) earned $3,260 in the $5,000-added class that highlighted the Southern California Reined Cow Horse Association’s most popular event of the year – the Sherri Gilkerson Memorial and Big Horse Wine Country Classic. A full, three-day line-up included AQHA cutting classes on Friday along with two days of NRCHA, SCRCHA and AQHA reined cow horse classes judged by San Rose and Todd Crawford.

Right on course

Young horses and Young Riders pose bright future at Flintridge Dressage

Special to the Horsetrader - June 7th, 2012

LA CAÑADA-FLINTRIDGE – Outstanding quality displayed by young horses and Young Riders provided excitement for officials and spectators alike during Dressage at Flintridge CDI*/Y/J, held in a picturesque setting under grand oak trees at the historic Flintridge Riding Club May 24 – 27.

Once again, this competition hosted the Markel/USEF Young Horse Dressage Western Selection Trial, one of only three nationwide Selection Trials to select representatives to represent the U.S. at the World Championships in August.

Woodside wonders

Thieriot, Flettner finish on top at Woodside Preliminary Challenge

Special to the Horsetrader - June 7th, 2012

WOODSIDE — Frankie Thieriot and Julie Flettner each rode faultless show jumping rounds to win the two divisions of the $15,000 Woodside Preliminary Challenge at the Woodside Horse Trials on May 25-27.

Riding Euphoria, owned by Tory Smith, Thieriot, of Occidental, won the Horse Division with a score of 27.1 penalties. Riding her own Ping Pong, Flettner, of Petaluma, Calif., won the Rider Division with a score of 27.9.

Rein for the Roses

Non Pro Appy earns place in 'spotlight’

From Horsetrader staff reports - June 7th, 2012

ELK GROVE – Almost 200 horses and some of Northern California’s top reiners converged on the Brookside Equestrian Center May 3-6 for the 2012 Rein for the Roses.

Host Bill Madden put on three social events at this four-day reining, including a free spaghetti dinner at Thursday night’s draw party, a tri-tip dinner Friday, and a special Derby Day deal where the reining show’s schedule halted to present the Kentucky Derby on four televisions in Silky’s Back Gate pub. About 100 attended, followed that evening with a taco dinner and the Hat Parade and Contest was held.

In late May, Congress passed the Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks Backcountry Access Act, introduced by Congressman Devin Nunes (R-CA). The bill directs the National Park Service (NPS) to issue permits to commercial horse and mule packers to operate in the wilderness areas of Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks. Due to a lawsuit the NPS had not yet issued permits for the 2012 season.

REIMS, France – Annie Cook of Woodside helped lead the way for the four members of the 2012 Show Jumping European Young Rider Tour who took second June 1 at the CSIOYJ Reims.

The U.S. entered the two-round competition in an enviable position having drawn fifth of six teams to contest the 1.45m track. The team of Cook, Alise Oken, Chloe Reid and Lydia Ulrich capitalized on their strong draw to jump to take the reserve finish.

Dear Dana: What is a ‘good’ seat and how do I perfect mine?

By DANA HOKANA - Horsetrader columnist - June 7th, 2012

DEAR DANA: I haven’t been riding long, but I am being told I have a good seat — and that I should continue with it. What does that mean?
C.A. Wilcox, San Diego

Dear C.A.: When you have a good seat you are able to catch your horse’s rhythm and can “flow” with your horse. Can you picture watching certain riders who look like they are “one with their horse?” They make it look effortless and easy.

When your seat improves, you get closer to riding “as one,” and soon you, too, will be able to catch the rhythm and flow with your horse. All you need is some knowledge, a “stick with it” mentality, and a little hard work.

How fast can you reward your horse?

By LES VOGT - Horsetrader columnist - June 7th, 2012

22nd in a series
After showing readers some techniques to teach your horse about bit pressure, Les give us a look at providing feedback.

The better you get at rewarding your horse for the correct response or even the correct thought, the faster he is going to progress through this program. This means that before he can be trained, you need to become trained. You need to get to the point where your hands respond to the presence and absence of resistance in your horse’s mouth, almost before your brain comprehends it. Think for a minute about when you drive a car (or, for our younger readers, ride a bicycle). When you come to a curve in the road, do you mentally stop and think about how you’re going to make it around the corner before you actually start to move the wheel? Probably not if you’ve been driving for more than a few months. Your riding has to start to become the same way:

Chris Cox headlines Horse Expo line-up June 8-10

From Horsetrader sales staff - June 7th, 2012

Just in time to kick off summer, the Western States Horse Expo returns to Cal Expo in Sacramento June 8-10 with a star-studded line-up of clinicians, trade show vendors and activities. Chris Cox heads the list of presenters, which also includes Horsetrader “Dear Dana” columnist Dana Hokana, Lynn Palm, and Eitan Beth-Halachmy. Back this year is the Magnificent 7 Stock Horse Championship, plus a “Breed Walk”, the Trail Symposium, the Book Corral and “Project Cowgirls!” Be sure to stop by the California Horsetrader booth to take advantage of our ad specials…and also to meet students of the UC Davis Horse Barn, sponsored by California Horsetrader. For more info on the Expo, see their ad on page 15.