Winter in Wellington

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You know it's show season in Wellington when you wash your white breeches after the last class on Sunday and they are barely dry as you grab them off the rack for the next show.

Salvino and Adrienne on the Adequan Global Dressage Festival showgrounds.

Salvino and Adrienne on the Adequan Global Dressage Festival showgrounds.

The annual craziness has begun again. We have 13 horses here with me that I ride on a regular basis, as well as four others at the barn for riders I teach.

Despite my best efforts I have yet to discover a way to fit more hours into a day--but I'm working on it. No matter how well-prepared I think I am every season, it always feels as if I am running a three-ring circus down here. But the craziness of the Wellington season is something that must be embraced and tackled head on, and I really do love it.


I have had several clients who already are competing this year, and I am very proud of their accomplishments. I also will be competing more this season, and I'm excited about that. After pretty much sitting on the sidelines last year, I am itching to get back out there in the show ring.

Karen MacMillan’s Argentinia

Karen MacMillan’s Argentinia

One very exciting new equine partner who I will be showing this year is Betsy Juliano's 9-year- old Oldenburg mare, Horizon (Hotline x Don Schufro). Horizon and I made our show ring debut last weekend at Fourth Level, winning both her classes with 70.9 percent and 72.8 percent. I couldn't be happier with the way Horizon handled everything. She is a hot and spicy mare, but she seemed unfazed by everything at the show, even the near-hurricane-force winds during our second ride. You've just gotta love a good mare.


I also have a lovely 8-year-old gelding, Schufro Gold, who I will be competing in the Developing Prix St. Georges at the show this weekend.

Credit: Ally Dunlop Adrienne Lyle and Horizon competing at the Adequan Global Dressage Festival.

Credit: Ally Dunlop Adrienne Lyle and Horizon competing at the Adequan Global Dressage Festival.

And of course, there is also the big and beautiful Salvino (owned by the syndicate of Juliano/Yamazaki/Garcia-Cannavino/Hlavacek). He is doing very well, and I am really excited about his progress.

He continues to get stronger and more secure with the Grand Prix work every day. He is such a gentleman and a joy to work with and ride. I feel so lucky to get to be a part of his life. I have not yet decided when I will take him out to compete the first time, but I did take him to an exhibition ride at the Global showgrounds a few weeks ago.

We got to ride in the main stadium, at night, under the lights, and he was amazing. So calm and focused and confident. I was really impressed with him. Next week, I will ride Salvino in the U.S. Equestrian Federation Dressage Observation and Strategic Training Session with Robert Dover.

A few of the syndicate owners will be flying down for that week, and I am excited for them to see how far their boy has come since they last saw him last summer.

I am very thankful to the wonderful owners of these horses I get to ride. I feel so fortunate to have such a great group of people and horses in my life. I have a very busy and exciting show season ahead of me. Now, if could just figure out how to add some extra hours into the day...

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