Winter tours for 2012/2013 need to be established on each coast with qualifications for the U.S. National Championships. A short list should be developed out of the competition results in Florida and California over the winter, and Gladstone in the early summer. The short list should be sent over to Europe for three months in late summer/early fall for a development tour. Our horses and riders need experience and exposure to the European shows. Summer/fall of 2013 is a good, quiet time to get out to the smaller CDIs.
All riders, trainers and coaches should attend the European championships to study the competition and develop a better understanding of how the Grand Prix test is being ridden today. We need to work together, study together and advance together.
Winter Prep For Normandy
Winter of 2013/2014 must identify a stronger short list than the year before. And this should be accomplished at the CDIs in Florida and California from January-March. I hope that a set of three non-American international judges could be hired to do two shows on each coast, and that their scores could be statistically analyzed to see whom they favor. These should be judges from the jury in Normandy, including the head of the jury.
American judges should be rotated at these CDIs, and they should be required to participate in an evaluation session with the top-placed riders and team coach after every show. I hope that these American judges would have consulted with European judges before the session. The statistical analysis and the judges’ evaluation needs to show our team the strengths and weaknesses of each pair so that our trainers and riders can work together in getting the scores up.
This short list of at least eight horses/riders needs to move to Europe in April of 2014. Horses and riders alike need to settle in and adjust to the food, the time zone and the bugs of Europe. This takes one to three weeks depending on the individual.
This short list needs to be split into an A and B Team with the teams alternating between the following shows:
April in Hagen, Germany (B Team)
May in Munich, Germany (A Team)
May in Hamburg, Germany (B Team)
June in Hickstead, England (A Team)
June in Rotterdam, the Netherlands (B Team)
July in Aachen, Germany (Top Six)
July in Falsterbo, Sweden (Low Two)
By July 15, we will be able to pick our strongest team for the WEG in Normandy, August-September 2014. And I hope that our team would be well prepared for success.
A plan for Rio de Janeiro would look much different than the one for the Normandy WEG because the goal competition (2016 Olympics in Brazil) is on a different continent. Our team needs to stay home in the winter of 2015/2016 and bring the competition to the USA so that we can test ourselves against them. Don’t raise your eyebrows at me, Rita, I have a plan for that too!
These are just examples of logistics that could work taken from the top of my head. I am sure that all the naysayers are already pointing out how financially impossible these outrageously expensive plans are. But you don’t succeed big when you dream small, Rita.
This kind of advanced planning must be done and in the greatest possible detail. When our plans are detailed, it is the job of the team fundraiser to make sure we can pay for them. Which will bring me to the next blog about Marketing and Finance.
I’m Catherine Haddad Staller, and I’m sayin it like I’m dreamin it from Vechta, Germany.
Training Tip of the Day: “At first, dreams seem impossible, then improbable, and eventually inevitable.” —Christopher Reeve