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  1. #41
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    Default Meanwhile, the Springsteens buy a gold medal jumper

    per the H/J thread...
    They bought Great Britain's show jumper Vindicat, who was part of GB's gold medal team.

    Great news for USET ! Let's hope it works out.

    (posted here since we're talking about having top horses, owners, cost of fielding a team, etc.)
    Last edited by Mardi; Sep. 18, 2012 at 11:06 PM.
    -Amor vincit omnia-



  2. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by StarDoozer View Post
    This opinion is not only held by Anne. It's held by many, many people in all of the Equestrian disciplines in the US. I do not think the Olympics were her fault in the least and I applaud her for coming out and saying a lot of this stuff. We've known for a few years that we had "slim pickings" for the team this year. Horses got hurt, horses ended up not being what we had hoped (through NO fault of Anne)... I think Heather and Catherine have it right when they say the entire sport changed with Totilas. It went from 4-years-ago when consistent 70%s would put you on a team pretty much anywhere in the world to 80% being the new standard. Except for Ravel (and Wizard when he's being brave!), we don't have 80% horses. Paragon could be. Legolas could be. I'm sorry but I can't think of any others.
    Hi Liz,

    I don't think that our performance at the Olympics was her fault in the least, please don't get me wrong. I know she's a good trainer and has a vested interest in our sport. I just think she's off-base and often very negative in her analysis. I wish she was more proactive than reactive.

    We did have slim pickins this year, but that doesn't negate the fact that we were represented and people paid alot of money to be represented. Our riders had immeasureable experience due to their owners and that is reflected in their training and clinic fees. They'd argue that going to the Olympics was a waste of time, I guarantee you. And I also know that "team spirit" and even "owner spirit" isn't always in the forefront of their minds. I get that aspect of Anne's article. But slim pickins doesn't warrant an article from Anne stating that "we should have sat this one out". That's just poor sportsmanship. In my opinion, just my opinon.

    Catherine and Heather have had to beat the bushes and work VERY hard for US support, often for support that wasn't forthcoming. I would love to see Anne and others identify mechanisms to support owner/trainers on great horses, and owners without deep pockets but who own great horses and put them under under great trainer/riders. I don't think we're lacking in talent as much as we're lacking in a system to develop the combinations that don't have deep pockets. Right now, these 80% horses HAVE to be identified and owned by very wealthy people, who will pay good riders to develop and campaign the horses. But as we see with the British horses and even Totilas, those horses then get sold due to the expense and the market value of the horse. Is this the ideal we're striving for in our sport? Develop a combination to their peak and then split them up due to the unsustainable costs of international campaigning and the perceived market price of the horse?

    Totilas changed things for sure. Until he was sold. 20 years ago, Nicole Uphoff changed everything. Then Anky and Isabell changed everything. Rusty changed everything with those tempis and half-passes. [these horses were retired, not sold] People didn't simply "give up" and stop showing though. Our team made an excellent showing in the past against great combos and we seemed to be proud of that. We were thrilled once when Christine Traurig's high 60s score gave us a bronze (as I recall). Now our Chef states she wished we could have sat this one out? Anky had the grace to ride Salinero in these Olympics knowing she wasn't going to medal herself, but it was to add depth to the team score. Hmmmmmm.

    I'm with you - Paragon could be a great horse. But Heather, who owns her own horse and does not come from familial or marital wealth, is forced to find sponsors. Are we SURE we don't have 80% horses as much as we don't have deep pockets to develop these 80% horses/riders/trainers? What would Otto have been like if he was geared for an international career at 3 rather than 9? What would Valegro be like if he was born on a farm in Ohio or CA or NJ to a person who wanted to ride the horse themselves? How many Valegros do we have already? Who knows.

    I'm sorry, I'm ranting again. I just have specific opinons about this subject. Thanks, Liz, for your response. I know your successes and very much respect your experience. If you'd wish to offer it, I'd enjoy hearing your opinion on what we could do to forward quality combinations that don't have deep pockets backing them. Or can we?
    Thanks! ANd thanks for hearing my rant.
    Proud member of the Colbert Dressage Nation



  3. #43
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    Nov. 5, 2000
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    Default

    Those are very good points, J-Lu.

    As for potential horses for future teams - look at the current Developing GP ranking list. https://www.usef.org/documents/disci...ankingList.pdf

    How many of those horses are owned by people with deep enough pockets to see the horse campaigned all the way to big International competitions? How many have riders with the drive, discipline, and financial and moral support to go all the way up the ladder? And that can be depended on for a team effort?

    As for AG's comments about not knowing of enough top horses to field a strong team in the coming years, I keep telling myself that she has seen many of these combinations a fair bit, and perhaps has reasons to doubt their "availability" down the road. Perhaps the horse doesn't have true international potential. Perhaps she knows the horse has been struggling with an old injury that will compromise its ability to perform reliably at top levels. Perhaps she knows the owner doesn't have the deep pockets to campaign the horse, or maybe even wants the horse sold. Again, she knows far more about these horse/rider/owner combinations than any of us know.

    But I will agree we have at least two very good quality horses to look to in the future - Legolas and Paragon, assuming they stay sound. Now, if only Heather had the financial support that Steffen has...



  4. #44
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    Default

    I don't have a problem with most of the points AG makes, but I think the tone of her article is wildly inappropriate coming from someone in her position.

    I have complete respect for her as a rider and a trainer, but perhaps she needs to move on from this role. While I applaud her for publicly saying some of the things she said, there is a tactful, constructive way to do it and a negative, degrading way. We're not going to keep owners around and bring new ones in when they get no credit.

    I am by no means saying that the performance in London was her fault. We sent the best we had, and with the exception of Steffen's freestyle (which didn't impact the team score), they performed as expected. However, she's had over three years now in this role, and doesn't seem to have done anything to make things better. Her article does not make it seem as if she is more optomistic about Normandy or Rio than she was about London.

    I think Catherine's point about 'nurturing' the GP talent is really true. It sounds as if Anne expects to sit back and wait for riders and trainers to identify these horses, train them to GP, perfect it for the 80% then she can swoop in and name them to a team. While that sounds wonderful, I think we're many years away from that sort of depth. I think we need a leader that is going to get their hands dirty out in the field for a while helping make it happen, and fundraising - and I just don't see it.

    As for Normandy, I'd rather see her out there working with riders to build our top group up over the next two years than lamenting our lack of depth. Legs and Paragon seem like obvious choices at the moment. IMHO, Wizard is still on his way up. Jane Clark's new horse for Katherine is only 7, but also seems like he could be a contender. In the piece, Catherine said she hopes to bring out a new horse or two at GP, and W could contend for Normandy as well. Lisa Wilcox and Pikko del Cerro HU also seems like an obvious contender. Caroline Roffman and a few others have nice small tour horses that may make up into nice GP horses too.



  5. #45
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    Many of Anne's points are spot on but perhaps a bit difficult to swallow. I am not sure our team was the strongest it could have been because I'm not in a position to follow all the selection trials and know firsthand who is doing what. However, I disagree with Anne regarding sitting out the Olympics. Every one of our riders gained incredibly valuable experience from participating. The experience they gained will help them in the future at another Olympics or as they prepare their own students. I absolutely do not see any downside to our being there.

    We have some amazing riders and horses as mentioned in previous threads. However, most of their horses were too green to be viable contenders at the 2012 Olympics. The biggest, single problem I see is personified in people like Heather and Catherine who have enormous talent and enormously talented horses, but lack proper funding. Not being "known" by European judges is a problem that has existed for a long time. The solution, again, involves getting these riders funding so that they can train and compete in Europe extensively for at least the year before the next Games.
    Charter member of the I-Refuse-to-Relinquish-My-Whip Clique



  6. #46
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by poltroon View Post
    This is how it reads now:



    I would interpret that as "prepping the judges," as in it suggests that you can't expect to score at your full potential the first time a judge sees you ride.
    Yes, thanks, Poltroon, the "prepping the judges" quote was just my summarized interpretation, not a proper quote.

    Unfortunately, this is part of the reason why dressage doesn't get much respect as an actual sport by the general public. They might watch it and admire the "fancy-prancing" but they'll never understand the scoring. Neither will I, probably. But makes it hard to justify it as an Olympic sport.



  7. #47
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    Default

    For a subjective sport, "prepping the judges" means getting in front of the judges to allow them to gain a familiarity with a particular horse/rider combo.

    It is impossible to judge fairly a h/r pair if the judge has never, ever seen them go. There isn't anything wrong with this -- didn't you get a lot more out of a movie or TV show if you watched it twice, read a book twice? The more times you watch something, read something, the more you get out of it each time.

    Honestly, I think the judges would prefer it, so that they are not handed the staggering task of fairly evaluating a GP performance in just one go, given the complexity of a GP test.

    It's essential to get in front of the judges who are judging the OGames or WEG, if you want to even consider medalling.



  8. #48
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by cyberbay View Post
    For a subjective sport, "prepping the judges" means getting in front of the judges to allow them to gain a familiarity with a particular horse/rider combo.

    It is impossible to judge fairly a h/r pair if the judge has never, ever seen them go. There isn't anything wrong with this -- didn't you get a lot more out of a movie or TV show if you watched it twice, read a book twice? The more times you watch something, read something, the more you get out of it each time.

    Honestly, I think the judges would prefer it, so that they are not handed the staggering task of fairly evaluating a GP performance in just one go, given the complexity of a GP test.

    It's essential to get in front of the judges who are judging the OGames or WEG, if you want to even consider medalling.
    Complete and utter BS. I should (and have) be able to ride a test in front of a judge for the first time and get the same, or very similar score as showing under a judge that's seen me before.

    The judges are required to judge what is in front of them at a given time. What they know a pair to be capable of and have seen before SHOULD be totally and utterly irrelevant to their scoring of a given ride. Of course, we all know this doesn't necessarily happen, but that's the way it's SUPPOSED to be.



  9. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by dressurpferd01 View Post
    Complete and utter BS. I should (and have) be able to ride a test in front of a judge for the first time and get the same, or very similar score as showing under a judge that's seen me before.

    The judges are required to judge what is in front of them at a given time. What they know a pair to be capable of and have seen before SHOULD be totally and utterly irrelevant to their scoring of a given ride. Of course, we all know this doesn't necessarily happen, but that's the way it's SUPPOSED to be.
    Just a comment: SUPPOSED TO BE? Nothing about showing is written in stone, and judging is done with humans who have memories.... start singing..... Memories in the corner my mind, misty water colored memories of the way we were..... in EVERY mind judging. You might not like it, but it happens daily at shows.

    Also, MHO Anne is lamenting the serious problem of not drilling our minds to think in terms of over the long haul for training future riders. Not a single rider in this country can make it to the top with talent alone; they have to have money to compete. Does anyone know the actual price of training and showing is say, Florida, for the winter months? EACH year? Year after year? As one would guess, Gazillions of Gold. Not many people have Gazillions in their pockets. We need grants, we need money, and we need to have some kind of money available for talent without deep pockets.

    Frankly, Anne is begging us to come up with programs and grant money without riders having to kiss up to rich individuals to pay the freight. It also leaves riders isolated, and in need of containing their benefactors so the money stays under their own saddles. There needs to be a funding organization that can support 100 riders with horses of quality. That is not happening. Europe supports dressage the USA does not.
    ~Equine Jewelry~
    Used Saddles For Sale
    www.divadesigns.biz



  10. #50
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    Default

    Writing an article bemoaning the lack of money, though, doesn't create it.

    So, that leaves her with two problem-solving approaches to my eye:

    1. Develop a kick-ass fundraising strategy that will provide a pot of Team funds or that will otherwise cause money to flow to developing combinations.

    2. Figure out how to field a team with the money on the table.

    The article could say, "So here's my idea" or "I need help figuring out creative ways to meet these goals. Grumbling that there's not a national lottery sending funds to Equestrian does not strike me as productive.
    If you are allergic to a thing, it is best not to put that thing in your mouth, particularly if the thing is cats. - Lemony Snicket



  11. #51
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    Default

    The article was NASTY and ignorant.



  12. #52

    Default Gribbons Article Feedback

    I am a lover of dressage, before I am a lover of competition or nationality; however I am American and love to compete.

    That said the state of American dressage is a sad state indeed. Not because we don't have beautiful talented horses, we certainly do. However the culture of dressage I find is the antithesis of successful partnership between a horse and rider, and success comes in America from fighting the American "methodology" (whatever that is... ) rather than growing from it. A fight I for one don't care for. I would rather ride my beautiful horse alone at home and never set foot on a competition ground to actually enjoy every ride, grow and learn from each breath my horse takes, each hoof fall, each muscle working beneath me, as I do every day; than expose myself to a culture of close-minded destructive ignorance that is looking for the first mistake, the first hiccup so they can use it to burn me at the stake.

    It seems Gribbons indicated Ravel was the one horse U.S. had to show up with in London and not be ashamed of. The Dutch trained horse, the "LDR" trained horse, the "Rolker" horse who had all of his foundational work, and daily training of his formative years in the Dutch system. A system the Americans seem to take extreme and great pleasures in bashing every chance they can get, so it seems. I have rarely in the ten years since I feel in love with this system read one single beautiful word about it in American literature, Internet blogs, or heard in circles of the 'dressage experts". Yet look at the results. Look at what horses are trained in this method for a fully blossoming lifetime career of sustainable success multiple successful Games, long healthy lives and careers.
    The Americans hate it because they have no access to. They hate it because they cant create it here and to learn it takes extreme time and dedication oversees few are willing to indulge themselves in. Americans hate it because it and it takes years of study, and micromanaging and hand-holding from one who does know it, to learn correctly. Because Americans don't want to make that investment or lower themselves to being so ignorant to a new way of riding they call it abusive. Any method is abusive if a person attempts to employ strategies they are not knowledgeable in or trained in way beyond their capability and do it to the point of forcing and demanding results which feasibly is all an untrained dressage rider in a new method is going to be capable of doing and producing.
    The true Dutch mehod is nothing like the horror pictures and snapshots of horses with their heads yanked to their chests. It is classical dressage, sports methodology training, yoga and more all combined int the human equine partnership to develop full potential and extreme beauty and ability. I could take a photo of a yogi who has practiced and trained his body with great dedication for 25 years doing things with his body most could never imagine being capable of doing with their body. Than I could take a snapshot of a person forcing and untrained person into that same bodily position and easily say in the later photo that is abuse that can end up in broken limbs, torn muscles or death from a snapped neck. First photo would be a display of the greatness of the human mind body and spirit, the second photo would be a photo of a person being abused, tortured maybe even killed.
    The Americans hate the Dutch system because they dont know it, they can't ride it, they dont want to spend the time excessive amount of time, dedication, and discipline, it would take to learn it, cant easily access the training, and because they can't buy it and have it yesterday.
    American dressage is a reflection of the American consciousness at this current time, it is not sustainable and for dressage it is unsustainable as well as in opposition to the principles than create successful partnerships.
    Wake up America. We have all the resources at our fingertips for greatness yet we will not have success as long as we stay chained and bonded to unhealthy close minded ideals, as long as we want to buy what requires taking the time and dedication of daily work and practice within and outside ourselves to build solid foundations in ourselves and the horses we ride.
    the majority of Americans are true haters, outright haters of a beautiful system of successful dressage. It certainly makes me ashamed to be associated with any "American" dressage because of it. Not because the Americans are not just like the Dutch exactly!, but because of the hate they have shown and continue to show for a successful beautiful method in an INTERNATIONAL sport. Because of their lack of permeability to be open and accepting to what is good even if it is not their and make steps toward taking on how to learn a little bit about it, to be a little better each day, incorporate a little more of whats good into their own knowledge base to make their own knowledge a bit better. Ha; look at what Matthias Rath is having to doing. And there is no guarantees he can learn to ride that way but he is trying at least (God bless poor Mr. Gal who lost half his heart in the process of Mr. Raths desire for success however) It a true shame how ruthlessly and unfounded the Americans are in their judgement of the Dutch system and I am one of the few who is ashamed to be attached to American Dressage because of it; as much as I am born for the sport. Like I said I am a lover of dressage, before I am a lover of competition or nationality, and I am a lover of my horse above it all.



  13. #53
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    Default

    Donald Trump has a great saying for people like A.G. :

    "YOU'RE FIRED!"



  14. #54

    Default

    SnicklefritzG

    It is people like you just like you and there are so many of you that make dressage a very wicked undesirable sport



  15. #55
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dutch Rule View Post
    SnicklefritzG

    It is people like you just like you and there are so many of you that make dressage a very wicked undesirable sport
    That was a "wicked" and "undesirable" comment IMO.

    Everyone is entitled to their opinion and name calling reflects very poorly on you.



  16. #56

    Default

    "That was a "wicked" and "undesirable" comment IMO.

    Everyone is entitled to their opinion and name calling reflects very poorly on you."

    Incorrect.

    There is nothing nasty or undesirable about truth. Truth is that person is in the 90% opinion of all dressage enthusiast in America. It is a wicked position to hold and makes the sport undesirable.

    Majority rules indeed! That does not reflect upon the rule of the majority as ever correct. Look at Hitlers Germany.



  17. #57

    Default

    and interestingly enough the Dutch, despite the onslaught of slanderous attacks against them from countless American "dressage lovers" carry on and leave their door open, and it still remains open to this day. Miraculous I think. Yet the majority of Americans are far to proud to arrive knocking on their doorstep with an open mind and heart, eager to broaden their understanding and knowledge. And far too eager, quick, and most willing to trash any glimmer of possibilities they may see there.
    That seems to be the way it will remain at this point.

    Good luck to the American dressage lovers, perhaps they will find other paths to greatness in their long journey around what stands before them. Potential is a limitless never-ending possibility...

    I like were I stand and if I have to practice at midnight in the pouring rain in solitude and secret to avoid the politics of methodology; it does not make any one of my precious mounts hoof falls less sacred to us both. That is my purpose in pursing dressage, the partnership, the unwavering partnership between my horse and I; and I can build that without a seething audience gasping and crying for my persecution when my horses head graces below the vertical.... and that is what is has become here in the States. It would be nicer to share the knowledge of course, but that is surely unlikely here any time soon, if ever.



  18. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dutch Rule View Post
    "That was a "wicked" and "undesirable" comment IMO.

    Everyone is entitled to their opinion and name calling reflects very poorly on you."

    Incorrect.

    There is nothing nasty or undesirable about truth. Truth is that person is in the 90% opinion of all dressage enthusiast in America. It is a wicked position to hold and makes the sport undesirable.

    Majority rules indeed! That does not reflect upon the rule of the majority as ever correct. Look at Hitlers Germany.
    I'm sorry,I'm not following your reasoning. How is Snicklefritz' feeling that Anne Gribbons should be replaced, "wicked"?



  19. #59

    Default

    Ha. I read A.G to be Anky (Van ) Grunsven...



  20. #60

    Default

    Thank God, I am so sorry. I am clearly far to accustomed to saying the word Dutch and Dressage in any American forum and getting beat up for it...
    my apologies for the misunderstanding! Thank you for taking the time to make that clear.



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