Boyd’s 2020 Wellington Showcase Recap

We have arrived home well after a great week of training and competition in Wellington, Florida. To be honest, I am little disappointed with our result in the Wellington Showcase, as I really thought Ludwig was set up to be very competitive.  By saying that, there were a lot a positives to take home from the event and the week’s training.


On Wednesday, Ludwig underwent the USEF Elite Squad vet check. This took a couple of hours, and consisted of X-rays, ultrasounds, flexion tests and trot-ups. The vets were very impressed with how Ludwig presented; we have a good, tough, sound horse.


Wednesday and Thursday consisted of a number of dressage and jumping lessons, and Ludwig worked very well.  It was great getting down there and concentrating on just a couple of horses. I really felt like we improved.   It was also a real buzz watching the Grand Prix dressage and the 5-Star showjumping. Watching McLain Ward and Steffen Peters win was very inspiring.


On Saturday, Ludwig did a hum-dinga of a dressage test. He was super. He felt relaxed and really got some great marks. The third flying change was early in the hind legs, and he was a little inconsistent in the bridle early in the test, but all in all it was great. We scored a 26, which is a world class score.


On Sunday I was pretty nervous. The showjumping course was huge! Some of the jumps measured 1.35m.  It was the biggest track we had ever ridden – it was bigger than the Olympics. Ludwig warmed up well, and I thought we were in business, but when he got into the big grass ring he got very spooky and backed off. He really changed. He jumped the first line well, and then the second line he spooked a little and chipped at the vertical. Somehow we left it up, but we paid for it at the next fence. I probably made the mistake of riding him a bit hard, and he lost his shape. We had another vertical down later in the course, as I was over-riding him a little. We finished the round with 2 rails down and 8 jumping faults, and I knew it was impossible to win the class.


I decided not to go at full speed cross country. I thought it was smarter just to get him around safely and save him for another day. He jumped well, though we had one bad fence, which was the double of skinny fences on top of the mound. I did not deliver him to the correct take off spot at the first narrow fence and he bunny hopped it. To Ludwig’s credit, he managed to get over the second narrow fence. He showed heart as it would have been easy for him to run off the jump. He finished the round well.


My leg held up well over the bigger jumps; I am still a bit stiff and sore, but definitely getting better.


We finished about midfield. I do think that this event was a bit of a surprise to Ludwig, being so early in the year and without a preparation event. I think he will benefit from this run at his next start, which will be the Bruce’s Field Showcase in three weeks’ time.


I would like to thank Ludwig’s syndicate members Beth Meyers, Gloria Callen, Trish Boone and Michael Taylor whom looked after me like a king for the time I was in Wellington. I had great accommodations, brilliant meals, amazing spectating and great company!  It was a real treat. Unfortunately, now it’s back to the reality of long days and hard work here in Aiken.


Video of Ludwig Dressage, SJ, XC:


Photo Credits Lisa Thomas, Mid-Atlantic Equestrian
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