Town and Country

Magnificent Monty "Muffin"

Magnificent Monty “Muffin”

The Eventers Logo is “Red on right, white on left, insanity in the middle”. I think insanity runs wild between Friday and Sunday.

The weekend was kicked off at Town Hill Farm: Monty competed in the 4yo YEH division Friday, and both Monty and Susie competed in Open Novice Saturday. What a property! The turf was phenomenal, landscape was gorgeous, a breeze dulled the intense sun, and the horses were all calm and happy. This is a perfect place for the YEH and FEH competitions.

Monty showing exception balance and engagement.

Monty showing exception balance and engagement.

Monty was his typical gentlemanly self, earning 2nd place and a qualifying score for the YEH National Championships this fall. The jump course was  quite small, averaging elementary/beginner novice, and proved difficult to ride forward to highlight the horse’s form over the fences and could have used a more generous layout through turns for the young horses. The terrain was perfection, and everything was maintained beautifully.

KC and Matt's darling 6month yo, Troy.

KC and Matt’s darling 6month yo, Troy.

That evening, I caught up with a friend from 20+ years ago (YIKES!) at their home for dinner. KC DiCostanzo, husband Matt, and children Lyra and Troy entertained me through Disney adventures, culinary delights, and the partial worry/excitement of holding a 6mo year old. What a beautiful family – their children are so full of joy and happiness. Clearly, their home is full of love and great fun.

susie flat

Susie being perfect through and through.

Saturday, both horses ran novice and had fantastic days. Monty felt very confident in the dressage ring and placed 5th, and cruised around the XC with no question or hesitation. Show jumping, my weakest phase, we pulled a rail due to a poor distance. He is learning to sit and condense his stride while maintaining the balance and power to the fence. He is a brilliant young horse that will easily compete Preliminary as a 6yo with the right match. Susie was her typical, classy self – all business in the ring, focused with a smile on XC, and calm in show jumping. Working her over the fences, I was questioning why I had not entered her at training level. Our 2nd outing together, she made easy work over the courses, and her confidence made the rides relaxed and effortless. She placed 4th for the day.

For their first overnight both horses were stars. They settled quickly, enjoyed the view from their stalls, and happily ate hay between rides.

Reagan and her very proud mother, Kim.

Reagan and her very proud mother, Kim.

Sunday morning, Round Trip Reagan, her owner Kim, and I headed north to Huntington Farm. This continues to be one of my favorite events – definitely my favorite event for young horses and as a move-up competition. Reagan continues to impress us with her incredible mind and composed manner. She was far more comfortable this time in the dressage ring, maintaining a working stride while making sense of the movements within the small space. She scored beautifully, earning 3rd in her division. With a fun, curving track ahead of us, she never said no to a fence, and was eager to think about the questions as she tackled them. She maintained her placing with a double clear. Her work over fences continues to improve, and was showcased in the very twisty turny show jumping course. She pulled a rail when my eye led us to the next fence through a tight turn too quickly. She ended the day where she began – 3rd – but left the horse trials as a winner through and through. She is incredibly special!reagan 2

A huge thank you to all of my sponsors, students, and clients for the support and allowing me to share in their excitement with their very special horses.

Katie Murphy

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