Crutches, canes and other mobility assistance devices at Rolex 13
I had a great time at my first ever Rolex! It was an equine bucket list item that far exceeded my expectations. As I was wandering through the shopping areas and the stadium prior to the start of Day 3 I couldn't help but notice the number of spectators who were hurt in one way, shape, or form. Crutches, canes, walkers, boots, casts, wheelchairs, you name it! My curiosity was to naturally wonder if all of these people had been injured in equine pursuits. Did anyone else notice the high percentage of people on the "injured reserve" list? I got to thinking that it must be a higher percentage than an average cross section of America. Do you suppose you would see that many injured people at a typical sporting event, say basketball finals or the World Series? Perhaps this is a sport where spectators are also participants - whereas fans of other sports are strictly fans. At any rate, I must say that these fans were hard core to be there with whatever devices they needed!
I wonder if it's partially because that's the only time horse people get a vacation? Or because many eventing/ horse venues aren't very handicapped friendly by virtue of being in the middle of a big field?
I was at Rolex with a friend who is recovering from a compound femur fracture--of course from riding!
We also went down to Ocala in February for the ICP Symposium and were eating at that horsey resturant where everyone is either an eventer or in racing with another rider/coach who had recently been hurt. People kept walking/limping in with casts, bandages or crutches and we kept laughing because it was so obvious everyone was banged up from riding!
I must say the organizers absolutely out did themselves trying to make it easier for those with physical issues. It has not always been so, and the change is fantastic.
I was at The Hollow (one of the furthermost jumps on the cross country course) and there was a quadriplegic lady in a motorized chair, well-placed to enjoy every ride that came through The Hollow. As the rain kicked in, her friends covered her with a black plastic trash bag, and I sat and listened to her commentary, as she and her friends watched pairs ride through. After Andrew rode Quimbo through, and the event was over, they were able to make their way back to the main thoroughfare, due to the excellent footing and turf. I was happy to know she was able to participate in the event as a spectator, and the area where her motorized chair was placed was just under the scaffolding for the camera, so she had an excellent view. I don't know what word to use to describe it, "touching" or "humbling" just doesn't seem right? But kuddos to those who made it possible for her to enjoy the day.
“Always saddle your own horse. Always know what you’re doing. And go in the direction you are heading.” Connie Reeves Jump Start Solutions LLC