Friday, December 31, 2010

2010 News

December 11th,2010
Sakura Hill Zorriola shows her stuff at the Tampa CFHJA Horse Show with John Brown in the Irons Zorriola made her debut in the 1.25m division with John Brown aboard. She was clear the first day and as the course went on jumped better and better. The second day, she had a few rails- but rails where others stopped. John is very happy with her progress at 1.25m as she is listening to him and learning from past mistakes. Despite the rails, she came home with a Third Place yellow ribbon and some $$ which make us happy!
Zorri
Zorri
Zorri
December 3rd,2010
A Great Kick off to the Florida Winter Show Season Sakura Hill Zorriola, Sakura Hill Ana Bella and Sakura Hill Ahme attended RMI's Mid-Florida Series at HITS Post Time. Zorriola competed with John Brown in the irons in the 1.15m $500 Stakes class and placed 7th Ana Bella competed with John Brown in theh irons in the 1.00m class and placed 2nd Ahme schooled with Kasey Bedard and had a very productive lesson with John Brown. We are more than thrilled with the positive and productive horse show. Next up: Tampa December 9th wiht Zorriola competing with John Brown
Zorri
Zorri
Ana Bella
Ana Bella
Zorri
Kasey and Makoto
Kasey and Ahme
Kasey and Ahme
October 26th,2010
Sakura Hill Farm's Blog
October 19,2010
Stallion & Breeders Issue
October 18,2010
Sakura Hill Farm's October 2010 Newsletter
October 17,2010
WEG Inspires Plans for 2010-2011 Show Season
Inspired by watching such excellence at WEG, we came home to formulate competition plans for Zorri, Ana and Ahme. Zorri will focus first on getting her Keur in Sport by nailing her requirements at 4'3". Plans afterwards- maybe YJC- maybe the levels at HITS Ocala and RMI. Ana Bella and Ahme will continue up the levels starting at 1.10 m- Ana with Monica and Ahme with Kasey- at local shows first and then HITS Ocala and RMI. We are really looking forward to this season- if the good times had at the KWPN keuring are any measure, this crew of youngsters both equine and human should be loads of fun! All under the wise tutelage of John Brown, of course!
October 11th, 2010
Sakura Hill Farm attends WEG
WEG Day 1 (Team Speed Competition Part I) WEG Day 2 (Team Power Competition Part II) WEG Day 3 (Team Competition Final) and Hunter Derby Exhibition WEG Day 3 Thoroughbred Farm Tour WEG Day 4 Individual Competition WEG Day 5 Rolex Final Four
September 13th, 2010
Fun and Friends at the 2010 Pennock Point Keuring
  • Sakura Hill Ana Bella (Condios x Ekstein) competed in the Iron Spring Farm Cup for 5 year olds and scored a 76. The judges commented that in their minds, they thought that "she has the perfect front end technique." She scored an 8.5 for reflexes and 8 for scope.
  • Vibrant LPR (Orame x Wellington) owned by Nancy Debosek received her Keur predicate after a successful Jumper IBOP with the score of 78. Vibrant, formerly a Dressage horse, has been in training to prepare for her IBOP during the last month. Our rider Kasey Bedard did a fantastic job of riding the test and her efforts were rewarded with an Orange ribbon and the ribbon for Best Jumper Mare of the Keuring.
  • Vixen LPR (Goodtimes x Gastronom) owned by Nancy Debosek received her Ster predicate after being awarded 8's for reflexes through the free jumping chute. Vixen, also formerly a Dressage horse, has been with us since April 2010, with a brief intermission. ""A testament to successful partnering of KWPN Breeders and Trainers" Lone Palm Ranch has been developing it's breeding program of KWPN horses for 20 years, with many great successes of top five KWPN horses in North America, Ster and Keur Predicates. For this years Keuring, however, we partnered with Sakura Hill Farm LLC, and the results were outstanding. Our mares Vibrant LPR and Vixen LPR are both jumper bred, but have had many years of Dressage training with our Dressage trainer Yvonne Holste. Vibrant LPR has especially excelled in Dressage. In 2005, Vibrant LPR was awarded #3 KWPN jumper mare in North America and #4 conformation in North America, receiving her Star and Keur eligible status. This year we decided to put her through the jumping IBOP test to achieve her Keur predicate. At the same time we thought to have Vixen LPR re-evaluated for Star. The biggest problem was that Vixen LPR had only been jumping under saddle for a short time and Vibrant not at all. So, we turned to our friends at Sakura Hill Farm LLC. These ladies really have it going on. Monica Sakurai is a very hard working young woman. She and her working student Kasey did an incredible job getting these two mares ready for the Keuring in a mere 3 weeks! The results speak for themselves. Vibrant LPR received her Keur and Vixen LPR her Star! Monica also put together a team of helpers, from grooms to photographers, to get everything and anything done. I have to also mention that Michelle and Makoto Sakurai are wonderful supporting parents that are always in the background lending support and helpful advice. We at Lone Palm Ranch could not be happier with this years results. We feel that Monica Sakurai was able to take the horses we have lovingly bred and trained, and add to that her own expertise. She has proven to us that we can trust her with the best of our horses. We wish her, her family and team much success in the future." Warm regards, Nancy Debosek Lone Palm Ranch, lonepalmranch.com Future Home Realty, nancyworks.com 813-765-8885 Thank you to The Sakura Hill Farm team (Kasey Bedard, Kirsten Kasper, Tessa Jamieson and Leah Feiner) for a smoothly run and successful day.
    Please Click here to view photos of the KWPN NA Pennock Point Keuring
    Please Click here to view the Keuring Report From the Road
    August 19th, 2010
    Good news from Holland! Ultra-niki has passed her PROK.
    August 17th, 2010
    Czola is apparently swelling the ranks of the filly foals with Corey Miller giving us an 80% chance for a filly by Crown Affair. This one will be Crown Czarina. Crown Affair In-Utero Option Due May 2011
    August 15th, 2010
    News from New York has it that H-Calinda is carrying a filly foal by Cubito. Good news for us but may be a disappointment to the many who have inquired about a colt option for this match. The odds on this vet are 3 out of 5 so far, so there is still hope! If a filly we will name her De La Cuba Linda. If a colt results, it will be offered for sale: Cubito Colt In-Utero Option Due May 2011
    August 14th, 2010
    Our friends from Lone Palm Ranch ferried Vixen and Vibrant up to Sakura Hill for tuning up before their KWPN jumper IBOPs mid-September at Pennock Point. Monica and Kasey will take charge of their program.
    August 13th, 2010
    Ahsianita approved for the Oldenburg GOV Main mare Book at a splendid inspection cum social do at Judy Yancey's farm. Beautiful horses viewed from under a tent,informative judging and delicious lunch under the live oaks- well, the rain brought us under the roof, but we could SEE the live oaks! Many thanks to Andrea Hayden for handling Ahsia and to Monica for keeping Wyoming cool, calm and collected. He conducted himself like a Statesman, as always!
    GOV inspection
    GOV inspection
    GOV inspection
    August 1st, 2010
    Hickstead won at Aachen, but Kalico Bay, aka "Frankie", the horse that Monica rehabbed for Tim Stockdale during her stay in England, just won Hickstead! Monica followed the rehab program that she had learned at Mount Holyoke College for our own mares. Thank you, Paula--it works like a charm!
    Kalico Bay
    August 1st, 2010
    Please click here to see Sakura Hill Farm's 2010 Newsletter.
    July 31st, 2010
    Family Affair: The Sakurai's, an article in The Central Florida Equestrian Magazine's August 2010 issue.
    Click here to see the August Issue
    July 23rd, 2010
    Sakura Hill and its mares welcome Mandalika xx (Arctic Tern x Diesis -GB), another regally-bred broodmare who has joined us. Plans have been to breed Mandalika to Cunningham next year to produce a Hunter Derby prospect extraordinaire, but one look at Mandalika makes us think on-the-line and Conformation Hunter devotees- take notice! This match should be dynamite! Her page will be up shortly on our website.
    Mandy
    July 18th, 2010
    Just In: Hickstead (Hamlet x Ekstein) and Eric Lamaze did it again and won Aachen. This is their THIRD competition at 1.60 in a row completed with NO FAULTS! Bravo! And congratulations to all the competitors- a great competition! To read more, please click here
    July 4th, 2010
    *Please click here to retrieve our Sakura Hill Farm July 2010 Newsletter
    June 21st, 2010
    Our Sakura Hill Ahsianita's half brother, Wang Chung M2S, out of the same dam, Harnita ster pref prest, was the winner in Sommersroef, Germany, of the Preis der Firma Citti STOOF Junior Future Final on a course set at 1.40 m.
    June 10th, 2010
  • Even more reason to look forward to the birth ofSakura Hill Ahsianita's Olympic Canturo 2011 foal
  • Elite Mare Show Results:
  • Champion was Cormint / Athlet Z / Liguster / Farnese stamm 504.
  • Reserve Champion Canturo / Coriano / Rebel Z / Calando I stamm 569
  • Best mare in movement Canturo / Corofino I / Landgraf / Fabulus stamm 223b.
    May 22nd, 2010
  • Sakura Hill Ahsianita's half brother shines in Europe!
  • Topping his achievement as a six year-old last year when he was the Vice-Champion of France's Future Elite series, this year Wang Chung m2s and his rider Felix Hassmann (Germany) won the 7-year-old Future Elite class (against the clock) at the CSI*** Béthune (France). Fifty-nine seven-year-olds started in the class which was held Saturday, May 22, 2010. On Friday Wang Chung m2s was joint winner of the one-round Future Elite class (not against the clock). Wang Chung m2s is out of the same mare, Harnita, as our Ahsianita m2s. Ahsianita has been confirmed in foal to Olympic Canturo for a March, 2011 foal
    May 17th, 2010
    Sakura Hill Czola's 2009 Hunter husband Cunningham, and her Hunter husband Crown Affair for a 2011 foal, clean up in the $10,000 Chronicle of the Horse/USHJA International Hunter Derby
    Crown Affair
    May 8th, 2010
  • Sakura Hill Encore is united with his new mother just in time for Mother's Day
  • Sakura Hill Encore has united with his new owner Mary and will travel to Georgia tomorrow. It is so heartening to see JUST the right owner connect with JUST the right colt! We wish the pair many happy times together in the Young Event Horse program and beyond!
    Encore and Mary
    Encore and Mary
    May 2nd, 2010
    *Please click here to retrieve our Sakura Hill Farm May 2010 Newsletter
    May 1st, 2010
  • Sakura Hill Cyprus Arrives Safely from Canada
  • Cyprus finally arrived from Canada. This Hennessey colt was specifically bred for the Hunter ring and his dam was a champion Hunter on the line as well as under-saddle in Canada as well as on the East Coast. We look forward to seeing him mature and succeed in the Hunter ring.
    Cyprus
    April 19th, 2010
  • Best News of the Breeding Season So Far...
  • Dr. Corey Miller called this evening to give us the good news that Ahsianita is in foal to Olympic Canturo. We are thrilled and have our fingers crossed for a filly! We will be offering a resulting colt for Sale.
    April 9th, 2010
  • Sakura Hill Czola surprises us with Campai
  • Surprise surprise- Monica went out to feed this morning and noticed a little addition to the herd- Czola gave birth to an beautiful dark bay colt with two hind socks with white around the eyes- Welcome to Sakura Hill Farm Campai! Papa Cunningham will be as proud as Mama Czola! Czola is such a good mommy. This one is very friendly and serene.
    Campai
    Campai
    Campai
    April 5th, 2010
  • Sakura Hill Farm Welcomes Vixen LPR to our Sales Line-UP
  • Vixen LPR is owned by our friends at Lone Palm Ranch. She has been entrusted to us to prepare for competition and compete on with a view towards her sale. We think that she will make a perfect partner in competition in the jumper ring. We hope to find just the right match in a person who will take Vixen to the ribbons in the jumper ring. More information, videos and photos to follow as she settles in.
    Vixen
    March 31th, 2010
  • A Romp in the Sun!
  • We visited Sakura Hill Wyoming by Willemoes out of our Ahsianita (Ulysses M2S x Olympic Ahorn). At 3 weeks old he is turning into quite the dashing lad!
    Wyoming
    Wyoming
    Wyoming
    Wyoming
    March 29th, 2010
  • Monica's suspicion proven right!
  • Our dear Runaway Love "Janey" (Pursuit of Love x Kris) mare confirmed in foal as we ultra sounded our recipient herd mares for synchronization. Stay tuned!
    March 21st, 2010
    *Please click here to retrieve our Sakura Hill Farm March 2010 Newsletter
  • Sakura Hill Ahsianita's Half Brother Continues His Success in Europe
  • Wang Chung m2s (out of Ahsia's dam Harnita) placed 3rd in the 7/8 Year-Old 1.40 m- 1.45 m Youngster Tour Final at the CSI*** Dortmund (Germany). Wang Chung m2s' results for the tour:
  • 1st at Offenburg
  • 2nd at Braunschweig
  • 3rd at Dortmund
    March 19th, 2010
  • HITS-Ocala Comes to a Close
  • HITS Ocala 2010 has come to an end for Sakura Hill Farm. Zorri performed well with her new co-owner Aaron Vale in the 6-year old YJC Classes and the 5 year olds took the circuit in stride and gained experience. Next stop, The Ocala Jumping Classic April 2-4th with Ana and Ahme in the 1.10m classes.
    Sakura Hill Ana Bella
    Ana Bella
    Sakura Hill Ahme
    Ahme
    Sakura Hill Zorriola
    Zorriola
    March 15th, 2010
  • 2010 KWPN-NA Annual Meeting a Hit!
  • We had a wonderful time in Wellington at the KWPN-NA Annual Meeting! Seeing old friends from the North East and the West and connecting with our friends from Florida was great! (Special thanks to Sandi Lieb for letting us share a ride to and from with her) Can we be joined at the hip to Paul Hendrix for a year? We learned much from him and the course walk of the Grand Prix with Laura Kraut provided further insights. The team from Holland never fails to inform. Monica came home with two trophies for Zorri and Ana that she can take a bath in! Pictures courtesy of Christopher Heale can be viewed below: (*If you would like the original higher quality JPEG image, please email Monica at M.SakuraHillFarm@gmail.com and she would be happy to send it to you).
  • Thursday Reception
  • Friday Horse Show
  • Friday's Lectures
  • Saturday Horse Show
  • Saturday Demonstrations
  • Saturday Awards Banquet
  • Sunday Course Walk with Laura Kraut and Grand Prix
    March 15th, 2010
  • Sakura Hill Ahsianita's half brother places 2nd in Youngster Tour Final at CSI**** Braunschweig
  • Sakura Hill Ahsianita's half brother the 7-year-old stallion by Royal Bravour and out of the same dam KWPN mare Harnita pref. prest.(Ahorn-Erdball xx),Wang Chung M2S, was ridden to a 2nd place by Felix Hassmann in the 7-/8-Year-Old Youngster Tour Final at the CSI**** Braunschweig (Germany).
    March 9th, 2010
  • Ahsia's Surprise!
  • Ahsianita has surprised us today with a big, bay COLT! Let's welcome Sakura Hill Wyoming!
    Sakura Hill Wyoming
    February 21st, 2010
    *Please click here to retrieve our Sakura Hill Farm February 2010 Newsletter
    February 18th, 2010
  • HITS Ocala- Week II
  • The tally for the second week at HITS:
  • Sakura Hill Zorriola placed 4th out of 16 in the 6-year old Young Jumper Qualifying Class with Aaron Vale, co-owner.
  • Sakura Hill Ana Bella with a clear round placing 5th out of 47 horses.
  • Sakura Hill Ahme with a clear round placing 6th out of 47 horses.
    February 16th, 2010
  • Ekstein Progeny Success in International Competition
  • P'Compadre Wind Shear M2S (Ekstein x Orlando) with his Argentine rider Matías Albarracín were in Punta del Este, Uruguay, at the Cantagril Country Club where they won both the 1.40 m. and 1.45 m. classes at the Punta Jump 2010 horse show in January.
    February 12th, 2010
  • HITS Ocala- Week I
  • The tally for the first week at HITS Sakura Hill Ana Bella and Sakura Hill Ahme's first outing in competition:
  • Ana received an 8th on Thursday out of a class of 25 horses with John Brown on board.
  • Ahme received a 2nd on Friday in the slop out of 16 horses with John Brown on board.
  • Zorriola received a 6th in her first outting in the 6 Yr.old YJC class with co-owner Aaron Vale in the stirrups.
    February 6th, 2010
  • Sakura Hill Zorriola Tunes Up

  • At the 2010 Pre-HITS, Sakura Hill Zorriola gave us a Third in the Level 3 in the Grand Prix ring and a clear round at Level 4 with one rail in the jump off. Aaron is very pleased as are we with Zorri's happy and confident attack. On to HITS Ocala where Zorri will be joined by debutantes Sakura Hill Ana Bella and Sakura Hill Ahme.
  • Sakura Hill Ahsianita's Half Brother Blazes in Europe as She Prepares for Motherhood!

  • Wang Chung M2S and Felix Hassmann scored a win in the Final of the Youngster Tour for 7-Year-Old Horses at the CSI** Offenburg (Germany)--the Preis der KLEENEX Kimberly Clark GmbH.
    Wang Chung M2S
    A day earlier, Wang Chung M2S and Felix nailed a clear round and placed 4th in the Preis der Sulzberger Pferdeboxen und Stalleinrichtungen in the Youngster Tour for 7- and 8-Year-Old Horses,scoring the highest placement for a 7-year-old in the class. They were 3rd in the Preis der Birkel Teigwaren GmbH in the Youngster Tour for 7- and 8-Year-Old Horses. At the CSI** Neustadt-Dosse (Germany)the preceeding week, Wang Chung M2S and Felix competed in the 7-Year-Old classes and placed third twice. Wang Chung and Ahsianita are out of the same KWPN dam, Harnita ster pref.prest. Ahsianita is expecting a filly foal early March by the Number 1 Showjumping Sire in Denmark for 2006, 2007,and 2008,the Holsteiner Willemoes. Willanita will have the bar held high by both sides of her family tree!
  • The '-nita' Damline Strikes Again
  • Sakura Hill Ahsianita's half-sister Tarnita (by Numero Uno) was 3rd in a 1.40 m class at CSI*** Nantes.
    At the KWPN Central Keuring at Den Ham in 2003,the Ster daughter of KWPN mare Harnita pref.prest., Tarnita, garnered first place by having the highest score for loose-jumping.
    January 14th, 2010
    *Please click here to retrieve our Sakura Farm January 2010 Newsletter

    January 10th, 2010

  • Sakura Hill Cyprus to Arrive Just in Time for Valentines Day!
  • Plans are being made to transport our weanling Sakura Hill Cyprus (Hennessey x Schoenfelder) from Canada to Florida in early February. Stay tuned for the exact date of arrival! He will join Sakura Hill Encore (Staging Post xx x Belmez xx) so that they can frolic together!
    January 1st, 2010
  • Happy New Year from Sakura Farm

  • May 2010 and the following decade bring hope, happiness and prosperity to all.
  • Monday, December 27, 2010

    Sizing a Horse Up

    I was speaking with a Dressage instructor from Scotland recently and she gave me a little visualization tip when sizing a horse up to see whether or not they are proportionate.

    It goes as follows:
    The size of the head from poll to the very end of the mouth is your base measurement
    The neck from point of wither to point of the poll should be approximately 1.5x the length of the head (ideally it is 1.75x the length of the head).
    The point of the wither to the point of the shoulder should be 1x the length of the head
    The point of the hip to the point of the back of the hip should be 1.25x the length of the head
    The saddle position should be 1x the length of the head
    The point of the hock to the floor should be 1x the length of the head
    I used a lead rope to measure these things and found out that our mare Ana Bella was on the mark for these measurements; however, Zorriola was a bit short in the hip and shoulder.

    Monday, December 20, 2010

    Horsey Sayings Explained

    I was looking online for an explanation of a particular horsey saying and stumbled upon several websites that provided explanations and histories to some of the most commonly used horsey sayings and superstitions. I thought that I would share a few of the ones that I found.

    1. Hang a horseshoe over the door for good luck

    This superstition is probably an amalgam of beliefs because horse shoes have seven holes and seven is regarded as a lucky number, they are made of iron, which has the quality of strength, and they are associated with horses and donkeys both of whom have been revered through the ages. There is also a legend from the middle ages about a blacksmith named Dunstan. Dunstan was visited by the devil in his blacksmith shop. The devil wanted Dunstan to make him shoes, but Dunstan refused and beat the devil, making him promise never to enter a place where a horseshoe hung over the door. To prevent luck from running out, the horseshoe must hang toe down. In some cultures however, it's believed the toe should be hung toe-up.

    2. Never look a gift horse in the mouth.

    While we value horses now as companions, they were once valued as modes of transport. You probably wouldn't give away a young horse that was still useful. When a horse got old, it would no longer be able to pull or carry loads, and therefore, had little value. One way to tell if a horse was old was to open its mouth and look at its teeth, which would reveal its age So, don't look in a 'gift horse's' mouth, because you'll probably find out its old, and you'd realize you had gotten something of little value (and not appreciate the thought behind the gift - if indeed it was well intentioned.) So, to look a gift horse in the mouth would be to question the value of a gift.

    3. One white foot, buy him; two white feet, try him...

    ... three white feet, look well about him; four white feet, go without him.
    This saying has variations such as ‘four white feet and white on his nose, take off his hide and feed him to the crows.’ That’s pretty harsh! Or, one, buy me, Two, try me, Three, shy me, Four, fly me. This old saying is probably based on the belief that white hooves are weaker than dark and your white footed horse is prone to unsoundness due to wear and cracks.  The saying is reversed in one version.  One white foot, keep him not a day, Two white feet, send him far away, Three white feet, sell him to a friend, Four white feet, keep him to the end. Whatever the intent behind the rhyme, we've learned that hoof color is not as important as we once thought it was.

    4. From the Horse's Mouth

    To hear something direct from the person concerned or responsible, rather than second-hand information. For example 'It isn't just a rumor that the factory will close, I was there when the boss said it, so I heard it direct from the horse's mouth'. The saying originally came from horse racing, where it was believed that the best tips came from the people working with the horses (trainers and handlers), so if one hears it from the horse itself then the information is even more direct and certain. For example 'I got a racing tip yesterday, and if it wasn't straight from the horse's mouth, it was the next closest thing'.

    5. High Horse

    During the Age of Chivalry, a knight was considered chivalrous if he was adept at riding a horse in full armor, which is not easy when the armor and rider together weighed around 440 pounds. Telling someone to get off his high horse probably originated from the fact that knights had to ride specially bred large horses because of the enormous weight of their armor. Nobles would ride through town quite literally looking down on others from their tall horses. Later on, politicians paraded in ceremonial processions on unusually large horses. A Scottish proverb incorporating a reference to one’s “high horse” was cited by James Kelly in 1721. Come off it is also derived from this saying.

    6. A Dark Horse

    One of England's most distinguished prime ministers, Disraeli was also a noted novelist and poet. In the second book of his three-volume novel The Young Duke: A Moral Tale Though Gay, Disraeli has his main character, the Duke of St. James, attend a horse race that has a surprise finish: "A dark horse which had never been thought of, and which the careless St. James had never even observed in the list, rushed past the grandstand in sweeping triumph." Today, the phrase "dark horse" is used to identify any unexpected winner.

    7. Chivalry

    Chivalry is from the French word for horse, cheval. Because of the code of gallantry, which knights were required to know well, chivalry eventually came to be associated with the ideal behavior for noblemen. Cavalier, which now means to behave aristocratically or in a dismissive manner, is the term one assigned to gentlemen who rode for the military.

    8. Putting on airs

    Putting on airs may come from a term used in dressage to indicate a movement in which the horse’s legs are off the ground. The various “airs” above ground are performed chiefly by horses trained in the hautes écoles (high schools), like the Spanish Riding School of Vienna. To put on airs, then, would be to show off a talent that is shared only with the most elite.


    9. Starting from scratch

    Starting from scratch first implied that someone was being honest in a horse race by making sure that his horse’s front feet were just behind a line drawn in the dirt road that marked where the race was to commence. Although the phrase up to scratch was first published in reference to boxing 160 years ago, it may have been used earlier in horse races.

    10. Wild Goose Chase

    Going on a wild goose chase refers to an equestrian sport started in England. In England in the 1500s, there was a popular sport in which the rider of a lead horse set a course that other contestants, as long as the first horse could hold the lead, had to follow accurately on their horses at
    equal intervals. The movement of the leader and the followers reminded people of the characteristic flight of a flock of wild geese, so the sport was called a wild-goose chase.


    Sources: http://horses.about.com/od/understandinghorses/tp/horsequotations.htm
    http://www.ultimatehorsesite.com/articles/olsen_horsesense.html
    http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/1789276/wildgoose_chase_origin_of_the_expression.html
    

    Monday, December 6, 2010

    So you have a horse for sale...

    You have a horse to sell-- what next? I have created a "Horse for Sale Checklist", which we go through when one of our horses is offered for sale. Our philosophy is to give the potential clients as much information as possible so that if they do decide to contact us and see the horse, they are simply verifying what they already had learned, asking any further questions, and making personal contact.

    The Ad
    • The Basic Information:
      • Sex
      • Year of birth (rather than age because sometimes ads become of date and it is hard to determine up to date age)
      • Height (or if young: "Should mature to _____h)
      • Discipline (Hunter, Jumper, Eventer, Dressage, All 'rounder etc.
      • Level: Beginner horse, Schoolmaster, 3'6" Hunter etc.
      • Tag Line: "Super Amateur Temperament"- What makes him stand out
      • Breed and Registration
      • Pedigree (if known) Sire x Dam x Damsire
      • Extras: Is it USEF Lifetime recorded? Any predicates: Keur, Prok, Premium?
      • Description: We try to avoid hard sell phrases that make promises. For example: "10+ mover" (you don't know what horses they've seen, in other words,  they may have just seen Lingh or Westporte meaning that your horse probably will fall short of your claim in comparison!) "Point and shoot"(you cannot be 100% certain how a horse will perform while being tried by an unfamiliar rider or in a situation unlike what it is accustomed to) Similarly, try avoid the use of Superlatives- "Easiest, best, most, prettiest, etc." It leaves a lot of room for  the potential client to be disappointed. 
      • Mention any Show experience or Performance worth mentioning. If the horse is young, has it been off the property to school?
      • If the horse has noteworthy lineage, mention something about the sire, dam and damsire (Genes may not be everything, but can certainly  increase predictability)
      • Good UP TO DATE Video and Photographs. Keep videos short and to the point- no need to show the horse warming up over fences, get to the essence of the jumping session-- i.e- if you say the horse is jumping 3'6", the video should show it  jumping 3'6". Movement/Flatting: walk, trot, canter,  each direction but keep it short. Photographs: Conformation, Performance (Free jumping, free moving, Jumping under saddle, Flatting--all this Depends on the age of the horse), head shot.
    video

    The Inquiry
    • You have a telephone message or email about this particular sale horse:
      • Never write anyone off: You never know what kind of client they might turn out to be.
      • Most importantly, email or call them back ASAP. If you cannot talk at length , at least reply and  tell them that you have received their call and will be in touch in x days. Always acknowledge receipt of their inquiry.
      • When you do touch base with them, let them ask questions and don't inundate them with what they have already learned from  reading your listing. They will probably want a few things verified and clarified. The ad is where you sell your horse--by  the time of inquiry, most potential clients have already decided that they are interested in seeing your horse and, barring any surprises from the conversation, will simply want to clarify and verify some things in the ad and check to see if the horse is a good match for them.
    The Showing
    • So you've set a date to view the horse
      • Make sure the horse is clean  before arrival. I prefer to have my horses in a stall when the client arrives. However, you may wish to ask the client of they prefer to have the horse stalled or at liberty if that is where it spends much of its time.
      • If the horse is of riding age:
        •  Take the horse out on cross ties to groom (this will be a touch up because the horse will have already been groomed). Demonstrate picking out its  feet  and brushing.. Ask the client if they would like to help (some clients like to be hands on whereas others prefer to observe) This is the time that I personally like to use to get to know the client better and ask about their experience, what they plan on doing with the horse etc. After the horse is groomed, tack the horse up. Make sure that the tack is clean. I always ride the horses first to show them to the  client  they and then ask if they wish to try the horse themselves. If the horse is jumping, make sure that the fences have already been set to save time.
      • If the horse is not started:
        • Take the horse out and groom. I usually do not ask the client to help as too many people around a young horse may not best. Again, this is a time I like to use to get to know the client. I show the young horse leading at a walk from a side view, towards and away from the client. I stand them up to be inspected much like at a breed inspection.
      • I then take the horse into a medium sized paddock and show their free movement to the client.
      • If the dam is on the property, I will  show her  as well (conformation and free movement).
      • If you have other horses that the client might be interested in
      • Mention them and ask if the client would like to see them as well. Have the ones that you think may interest the client already in a stall to make things easier and more time-efficient should they want to see them.
    • At the completion of the appointment,: try not to leave things too vague. See if you can get a feel as to whether they liked the horse(s) shown or if none of them were a good fit. Be sure that both you and the client have the means readily to contact one another. Make a date to follow up with a phone call.
     You should feel that you have given them a complete picture of the horse. The client may consider that the horse is not the right fit and has no further interest; however, you have shown it to the best of your ability. If you have been pleasant, forthcoming, well-organized and professional, you may have a sale now, in the future, or to a friend of the potential client if not the client himself!

      Good luck and happy horse sales!"
    
    Ana Bella Free Jumping
      
    Ana Bella Headshot
    
    Ana Bella Performance Shot
    
    Ana Bella Conformation Shot
    

    Monday, November 29, 2010

    Some of my favorite cavalletti exercises #3

    We are now beginning to transition from the basics to the intermediate.

    These are some useful distances between elements of a double, triple or combination:

                                         Pony                                         Horse
    Approach at Canter: 
        Bounce                 10-12'                                       11-14'
        One Stride            21-24'                                       24-26.5'
        Two Stride            31-34'                                       34-36'


    Approach at Trot: Between Jumps 1 and 2
    Bounce                    9-10'                                         9-11'
    One Stride               16-18'                                       18'
    Two Stride               30'                                            30-32'

                               Between Jumps 2 and 3
    One Stride               19-21'                                        21'
                               Between Jumps 3 and 4
    One Stride                20-22'                                       22-24'

    Trotting Pole Distances:
           Pony                  4-4.5'
           Horse                4.5-4.75'

    Placement Poles:
    Trot Approach:   9' from base of fence
    Canter Approach: 19-20' from base of fence

    Average stride length:
                                    Pony                                 Horse
    Trot                       3.25-4.75'                      4.5-5'
    Canter                   Varies by size                  9'-12'

    Monday, November 22, 2010

    In the Warm Up Ring-Jumpers

    Everyone has their own warm up routine before they enter the ring with their horse, and I know that every horse is an individual and requires different things. This being said, I've found a routine that I've had several of my trainers follow with small variations on the theme to suit the individual horse.
    The routine goes something like this:
    • Walk 7-10 minutes to warm up
    • Trot-5-10 minutes to loosen up and become supple
    • Canter- 5 minutes- bend side to side to supple and then extend down the long side, shorten along the short side and incoportate several fairly small circles, then extend again down the long side. (This is an exercise that has been practice while schooling at home and will increase your horse's ability to "explode" from a tight turn which will gain seconds during a jump off.
    • Now, you are ready to jump. The flatwork portion is to warm your horse up, loosen and supple him and make sure that he is awake before you begin jumping.
    • Cross rail or small vertical
    • Make the vertical a bit bigger
    • Small oxer
    • Larger oxer
    • Back to a Vertical to finish- this will sharpen them up in front
    Some trainers, depending on the horse, want the horse to finish with a rub before entering the ring so that the horse jumps with a bit more effort once in the ring. This will depend on the natural carefulness of your horse. This works very well with some very sensitive horses who are naturally careful because they remember the rub and end up jumping their little hearts out to avoid the rub once in the ring.

    To create the rub or the fallen rail, place the top rail of the last vertical just off the cup on one or both sides, usually "wind" from the horses' jump will be enough to knock it down regardless of them touching it.

    If you are lucky enough to be called back for the jump off, don't overdo the work you do between your first round and the Jump off.

    Preserve your horse's energy and keep things short. Remember, they've already been warmed up and jumped, so now just wake them up and fine tune.

    I prefer to do this with a short canter around to make sure that they are awake- maybe another round of "explode-come back".

    Finally, I might angle a vertical to make sure that they are willing to take the jump on a slice. Then off to the ring I go!

    
    Tisolde winning the Classic in Jacksonville in 2007
    

    Wednesday, November 17, 2010

    Some of my Favorite Cavalletti Grid Exercises #2

    As promised, I will be doing 4-5 exercises a week. Currently, we are still on the basics.

    Basic Cavalletti Exercises #2

    Monday, November 15, 2010

    So everyone loves chrome, but how do you keep it Bling-tastic for the show ring?

    We read this little tip in the Chronicle of the Horse about a year ago and used it on our Alla 'Czar mare Czola who has two very high white socks and a white blaze when she went to the BWP-NA Inspection for her Hunter Book approval and it worked like a charm. Fortunately, she is one of few horses we have at the moment that has a significant amount of bling, but should we have more with high socks and blazes, we'll be using this trick each and every time.

    What you'll need:
    1. Clippers with a #40 blade
    2. Czola after the BWP-NA Inspection
    3. Box of Corn Starch
    4. Water
    5. Bucket
    6. Towel
    7. Hard brush
    What to do:
    (1 month before the show)
    1. 1 month before the show, clip the white socks with a #40 blade. This will allow the starch to stick and dry more effectively.
    What to do:
    (Day before the show)
    1. In a bucket mix Corn Starch (you will use at least 1/2 the box- the full box, depending on how much white you are working with) and Water until it forms a thick paste
    2. Slab it on the high whites, like you would a poultice. Don't worry too much about getting it beyond the white areas- this can be taken care of easily the next morning.
    3. You can either leave it open to dry or you can wrap the legs over night to dry as you would a poultice
    What to do:
    (Day of the show)
    1. Use a hard brush to chip away the crust of corn starch that remains (make sure to get it all)
    2. Use a damp towel to go along the borders of the white areas and along any stray corn starched areas that aren't white
    The End Result: Sparkling whites that will repel dust and ensure that your bling stays bright for your time in the spotlight.

    Czola after the BWP-NA Inspection

    Monday, November 8, 2010

    Some of my Favorite Cavalletti Grid Exercises

    Every few blog posts I will be posting a Cavalletti Exercise guide (5 Exercises at a time) that can be printed out and kept on hand for those that have access to cavallettis. I cannot stress enough the importance of cavalletti and grid work for your horse and invaluable skills that can be fine tuned with their use, no matter how green or advanced the horse.

    Enjoy!

    Cavalletti Grid Exercises: Basic #1

    Click to Enlarge


    *Next time: Cavalletti Grid Exercises: Basic-->Medium

    Wednesday, October 27, 2010

    Horse Care Tip #2: So your horse has a tendon injury...now what?

    So your horse has just been diagnosed with a tendon injury. This dreaded news may make some think that it is the end of their horse's career, but it doesn't have to be. In this blog, I will share with you the rehabilitation program that Sakura Hill Farm has used to successfully return performance horses back to full work and continue their careers in sport.
    The vet will more than likely suggest an alloted time for stall rest (with or without hand walking) depending on the injury.

    Other treatments may be suggested, such as Stem Cell Therapy, Shock Wave and Ultrasound Therapy. You may, like us, decide to invest in owning or renting a very expensive machine called The Game Ready Machine.

      We are firm supporters of this machine and have used it along with our program to rehabilitate successfully several soft tissue injuries. The machine combines intermittent compression with circumferential cold, which aids in reducing swelling, speeding up recover time and preventing further tissue damage. To read more about The Game Ready Machine, please click here.

    So what happens now that your horse has been stall rested and is ready to begin back into work? The following rehabilitation program was suggested to me by Director of the Mount Holyoke College Equestrian Center and daughter to a soft tissue specialist at the University of Pennsylvania Veterinary School.

    What I was told was that the crucial concept of the rehabilitation program is that *WALKING IS ESSENTIAL TO RECOVERY.*

    After stressing the tissues through trotting or cantering, walking allows for the tissue to recover, heal and regenerate. The way I think of it is  by visualizing a rubber band that you are trying to fit around something. If you stretch it too hard too fast, it will break. If you stretch it only a little it bounces back. What you need to do is stretch it just enough that it doesn't break, but it retains its length, becoming more and more pliable every time. In order to do this, you must slowly stretch it and let it bounce back, stretch it a bit further and let it bounce back until it retains its new length without breaking. The key here is to let it bounce back, or in relation to the horse, return to walk for a period of time.

    Another way to think of this concept is when you blow up a balloon. Have you ever blown up a balloon and you blow and blow and then you hit a point where it becomes very easy to blow it up to completion? Well, that point is hard to reach, but once  reached the rest comes more easily. This analogy stresses that the start of the rehabilitation program is the most crucial.

    So how is it done?

     The seriousness of the injury and length of time  the horse has been stall- bound and out of work will determine whether or not each stage is completed within 1 week or 2 weeks but for the sake of this blog entry, let us assume that the horse has been stall bound for a long period of time (90 days) and is not only being returned to work to rehabilitate the injury, but must also be building fitness and therefore is going through each phase at 2 week intervals (a very conservative approach) In other words, approximately 4 months. If you are taking the "Fast route" for a more minor injury, it would take approximately 8 week before resuming jumping.
    • Week 1 & 2:   walk 10 minutes, trot 5 minutes (split between both directions), walk 10 minutes=25 minute session

    • Week 3 & 4:   walk 10 minutes trot 5 minutes (one direction), walk 10 minutes, trot 5 minutes (the other direction), walk 10 minutes (notice that the trotting has doubled in time, but so has the walking).=40 minute session

    • Week 5 & 6:   walk 10 minutes, trot 7 minutes, walk 10 minutes, trot 7 minutes, walk 10 minutes=approximately 45 min session

    • Week 7 & 8:   walk 10 minutes, trot 10 minutes, walk 10 minutes, trot 10 minutes, walk 10 minutes=50 minute session

    • *Week 9 & 10: walk 10 minutes, trot 15 minutes, walk 10 minutes, trot 15 minutes, walk 10 minutes, canter 5 minutes, walk 10=65 minute session (once you reach 15 minutes of trotting each direction, you may introduce 5 minutes of cantering)

    • Week 11 & 12: walk 10, trot 15 minutes, walk 10 minutes, trot 10 minutes, walk 10 minutes, canter 10 minutes, walk 10 minutes= 75 minutes *(notice that the second set of trotting decreases by 5 minutes as the cantering sessions increase by 5 minutes)

    • Week 13 & 14: walk 10 minutes, trot 15 minutes, walk 10 minutes, trot 5 minutes, walk 10 minutes, canter 15 minutes, walk 10 minutes=75 minutes

    • ***Week 15 & 16: walk 10 minutes, trot 15 minutes, walk 10 minutes, canter 15 minutes, walk 10 minutes=60 minutes (this resembles more or less a normal workout and can be considered completion of the program.)

    Now you can begin to slowly introduce jumping.

    With this program and the use of our Game Ready Machine after each workout, we have had no re-injuries and all of the horses returned to full work. Obviously each horse is an individual and must be treated as such. Pay attention to their fitness- some horses may not be able to endure 25 minute sessions from the beginning--it is up to the rider's discretion to determine how fit your horse is and how to moderate this program to fit each individual situation.

    Good luck and I wish your horses a speedy recovery!
    
    Oilily VDL on a walking trail ride (a great way to keep them mentally happy while rehabing)
    

    Tuesday, October 26, 2010

    Training (Tack) Tip #1: For a little extra umph, when you need it.

    While riding in England with Olympian Tim Stockdale I learned some  insider training tips from him which I will  share with you in this and upcoming blogs.

    TIP: Save the open front hind boots for the big classes.

    At home we tend to not use hind boots at all on our performance horses, unless they have specific interference issues. If they do have interference issue, we use regular fetlock boots such as These.

    For the big money classes, when you need that extra little something to ensure that the back rail of the oxer stays up, you might try using open front hind ankle boots such as These. For sensitive horses, the elasticated strap is milder than some of the other boot alternatives, however it might not be enough for the less sensitive horses.

    Tim preferred this brand of open front fetlock boots for his big classes, the Veredus  Pro Jump Fetlock Boots. The straps of these boots weren't elasticated and therefore could be pulled quite tight to make the less sensitive horse kick out the little bit extra.

                Monica & Tisolde competing at Jacksonville with her full length hind boots.