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Sneak peek by the bay

Futurity prospects unveiled at popular Reining By The Bay

From Horsetrader staff reports - August 16th, 2012

John O’Hara photo

Nicolas Barthelemy takes Sherie Jamieson's Smart Cherokee Chic to the Limited Open Futurity title.

WOODSIDE — With $180,000 in added monies and all the trimmings of the best reining events anywhere, the Reining By The Bay filled Horse Park at Woodside July 18-22, giving owners and trainers an early gauge of their futurity prospects.

Andrea Fappani continued his dominance at the venue, claiming the $15,000-added Open Level 4 Futurity on Rancho Oso Rio’s Steppin In Diamonds, earning $5,397. Fappani also won the $20,000-added Level 4 Markel Open Derby Smoking Whiz, owned by Silver Spur Equine, for an additional $6,496.

Pedal to the metal

Chris Pratt and Wakyra speed to Del Mar GP win

Special to the Horsetrader - August 16th, 2012

DEL MAR — Patience and speed. Those qualities aren’t typically paired, but Canadian rider Chris Pratt put them to work Aug. 4 to pull off a sensational win in the $30,000 August Festival Grand Prix.

As the final rider of 38 entries, Pratt patiently watched while rounds before him revealed a tough course designed by Pierre Jolicoeur. Almost half the field fell short in the vertical-oxer-oxer triple combination, while several others fell short over the liverpool vertical.

Pratt, who was showing Wakya in just the horse’s third showing this year, rode a smart-enough round to be one of seven clear jump-off entries, and then he pulled the stops.

Eight nations represented the field that fought to master Jolicoeur’s unique but technical track.

Season heats up in the Valley

VCHA July event reveals prospects as fall futurity season approaches

From Horsetrader staff reports - August 16th, 2012

Big Daddy photo

Doug Williamson rides Rocking J Ranch's Short And Smart.

BAKERSFIELD — Doug Williamson rode three different horses to the top three scores at the Valley Cow Horse Association Open Futurity held July 27-28 at the Sundance Feed Yard. The VCHA Futurity was part of a three-day show that also included National Reined Cow Horse Association and VCHA show classes on Sunday, and it gave owners and trainers a chance to gauge the progress of 3-year olds heading into the futurity season. The National Stock Horse Association Snaffle Bit Futurity takes place Aug. 13-19 in Paso Robles, followed by the NRCHA Snaffle Bit Futurity Sept. 17-29.

Host Britain upends medal hopes for U.S. and Ravel

By SHANNON BRINKMAN - August 16th, 2012

GREENWICH, UK — When the equestrian competition at the 2012 Olympic Games ended Aug. 9, the U.S. medal drought had continued. Steffen Peters and Ravel carried the weight of a nation into main arena for the Freestyle, which would determine the Individual medals, and the most consistently clutch combination in U.S. Dressage history didn’t have the day they were hoping for.

Great Britain did.

Communication before collection aids the process

By RAY ARISS - Horsetrader columnist - August 16th, 2012

HEY RAY: How do I keep a positive attitude in my horse while working on and teaching “collected gaits”?
Thurston Francers, Encinitas

HEY THURSTON: Your question seems simple enough. My answer is another story.
More often than not, when people first start a young horse, everything seems to go nice and easy because we ask for the bare minimum and we are grateful when it happens. Our expectations are low because the chances of things going wrong are high. At this stage of the game, the probability of danger keeps us careful and appreciative for anything positive that comes our way.

The Release: Timing is everything

By LES VOGT - Horsetrader columnist - August 16th, 2012

26th in a series
Last issue, Les explained how a horse is “soft in the bridle” when he has achieved vertical flexion. This issue, we pick up with an important component: the thought — the gesture — that he is willing to think about giving his nose to the pressure on the rein.

How can you make it easier for him to learn this lesson? Timing. To me, timing means release. If someone says a person has really good timing, it could mean they rode well, and their timing in terms of when to pick up a horse was good; but most important is the timing of release, because that’s the horse’s reward. You might still be kind of awkward with your riding, but if you create even an accidental thought or movement, make sure you take credit for it and reward your horse.

The California Dressage Society will be well represented Aug. 24-26 when the horses and riders from the Golden State invade the 2012 Markel/USEF National Young Horse Dressage Championships in Wayne, Ill.

Since the national young horse program’s inception more than a decade ago, California horses have successfully represented the West Coast on the national and international stage, and this year is no exception with eight horses ranking in the top 15 of their age divisions to earn championship invitations, as well as three designated alternates. One program in particular can boast of a proven track record for identifying and rewarding talented youngsters, helping build the foundation for future success: the CDS’s Young Horse Futurity.

Stock Horse trainers Nicolas Barthelemy of Descanso and Stacy Hanson of Idaho, two rising stars on the reining and reined cow horse circuits, have announced plans to marry.

Barthelemy, 28, who trains at Barthelemy Performance Horses in Descanso, proposed in Fort Worth in late July — between his Limited Open Futurity win on Smart Cherokee Chic at the Reining By The Bay in Woodside on July 22 and his trip to the National Stock Horse Association Futurity this week in Paso Robles. The Canadian native will compete on Jamminalena in the NSHA Derby in the same arena where he won the NRCHA Limited Open Derby in June.