Gracie is her name – a 5 year old dapple grey ottb mare standing 16.2h.
Gracie raced at Woodbine Racetrack, then was retired for a year before I purchased her this September 2014 (MY FIRST HORSE!!). I brought her to the barn while I was just finishing up my 2013/14 lease on the horse of my dreams, sat on her a few times, then left her at home while I went off to Trillium Championships to finish off a great season with my lease horse. I came home with fists full of ribbons and a heavy heart with the realization that that part of my riding career was over for now. So it was back to the basics.
I spent the next month schooling the thoroughbred and introducing poles and eventually small cross rails into my bi-weekly lessons. By mid – October we were cantering a small course with simple changes (and the occasional flying change by chance, lol) and I couldn’t be happier with our progress together, and every little improvement felt like a huge accomplishment! Unfortunately, the grey mare sustained a pasture accident, tearing all the muscles in her lower back and hind leg, putting her onto strict stall rest with a lot of uncertainties as we waited for the swelling to go down enough to reevaluate. Fortunately, we dodged a bullet this time, and Gracie was deemed back to gradual work by December, and now she is officially back into full flat work again. Phew!
So the next step? The hardest part right now is accepting that she no longer has the muscle to be able to work the way she was before her stall rest. It’s really just like I’ve hit the replay button. I haven’t reset her, she hasn’t erased the first few months out of her memory, I just have the chance to relive the trial months, only this time I know what is coming – the trick is to be patient and wait for it all to get back on track.