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Blogs - Erica McKeever

January 6, 2012

Sapphire Is Back In Action!

In 2010, Erica McKeever blogged for us about Sapphire's preparation for the Alltech World Equestrian Games and gave Chronicle readers a glimpse into life behind the scenes for America's favorite show jumper. As we look toward the 2012 Olympic Games, Erica gives us another peek into Sapphire's world with her family and rider McLain Ward.

November 9, 2010

Sapphire Wins Again, And Goldika Retires

After returning from the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games, it took all the people several days to recover, but not Sapphire!

The plan for her was to have a couple of weeks off before starting work again to be ready to compete in Europe at the end of November. But after a couple of days in the field, she was feeling very fresh—so fresh that we decided to put her back into work. She didn't want to settle in the field, just wanted to gallop around bucking, so we worried for her safety and rode her before we turned her out. She seemed really happy with this plan.

October 11, 2010

Things Didn't Quite Go According To Plan At The WEG


Glad to be home after a very long and stressful week. I’m very proud of our wonderful Sara and McLain. Even though the week didn't go quite as planned, it was a fantastic experience. 

After arriving there on Saturday, the temperatures started to drop. It was freezing, but the horses were all healthy and fresh. Sunday morning was the jog, and the U.S. horses all jogged perfectly. Then we had to wait for Sunday night for the warm-up, which started at 7:30 p.m., and team USA went near the end close to 11 p.m.

October 2, 2010

We've Arrived At The WEG!

Sapphire, or Sara, arrived in Kentucky safe, and sound.  She had a nice week with lots of turnout and beautiful weather until her departure time, when a tropical storm had moved through the area. Between volcanos disrupting travel to the FEI World Cup Final, hurricanes at the Hampton Classic and now tropical storms, Sara has had an exciting year.

Luckily it stopped raining during the packing and loading, and she was very enthusiastic getting on the truck. She left with Urico, and they picked up Quick Study and Cedric on the way.

September 20, 2010

We're Just Waiting For The WEG!

Only 10 days until Sara will be leaving for Kentucky!!

Since winning the Pfizer $1 Million Grand Prix, her days have been very full. She’s still working twice a day, which she is enjoying since the weather is much cooler. McLain was in New Hampshire at The Fidelity Classic with the young, black mare, O’d Eole, who finished third in the $75,000 Fidelity Investments Grand Prix. Goldika was scheduled to go, but she bit her tongue the other day while schooling, and it was bothering her a little, so she stayed home and will get to go to Harrisburg.

September 14, 2010

Sapphire Makes It Two In A Row

Wow! Thank you again Sara and McLain.

That was truly an unforgettable week. History was made in American show jumping, and everyone in Saugerties was a part of that. 


Jennifer Pratt
6 years 19 weeks ago

Thank You for sharing

I was one of those who made the trek down from Ontario Canada to watch - and great show it was. I had never had the pleasure to watch McLain ride Sapphire in person. It was stunning to watch, smooth and effortless. Just fantastic!

September 7, 2010

Sapphire Does It Again!

The first round of the show jumping at the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games is just four weeks away—how exciting! 

McLain and Sapphire’s preparation continued at the Hampton Classic this week—our plan was to show her on Friday in the World Cup-qualifier, and then the big grand prix on Sunday. Hurricane Earl meddled a bit with our plans, since the show organizers moved the qualifying grand prix to Thursday instead of Friday, so our departure from Castle Hill happened early Wednesday morning.

September 2, 2010

Who Is Erica McKeever?

It's been a long and winding road to traveling the world with Sapphire!

I have worked at Castle Hill for 22 years. I grew up in England, where I first started riding when I was 10. I was pony mad, and my parents bought me my first pony when I was 12. I showed at local shows and spent every second I could at the stables. 

August 23, 2010

Sapphire Gets Back To Work!

After a very nice weekend, everyone was home at Castle Hill. All the horses enjoyed being in their stalls with no horse show. This doesn't happen very often, but it's a nice change when it does. 

August 12, 2010

We're On The Team!

Well I guess it’s official—Sapphire and McLain made the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games team. We are all very excited and honored—what a great team it is!