Reflections on the 2018 FEI World Equestrian Games in Tryon

First and foremost, it’s an honor and privilege to represent the USA at an international championship; like every occasion, I can honestly say I’ve tried as hard as I possibly could to give my best at this year’s WEG. I believe the selectors picked the right five horses and riders, and you can overanalyze this event but at the end of the day, anything that could have gone wrong went wrong for Team USA. All five of us were in form and had good, sound horses that were performing well, but it just didn’t come off this weekend.

For me personally, I can’t thank the owners of Tsetserleg, Chris and TJ Turner, enough; they’ve been wonderful owners and have been very stoic through the whole process and competition. They truly love their horses and are invaluable owners and sponsors for me and Silva.

I also want to thank Scott and Silva for their help in the dressage, Richard in the jumping and Erik and Phillip in the cross country; the team management Joanie Morris and Susan Johns; team farrier Steve Teichman; and physio therapist Joann Wilson as well as my groom and Stable Manager Stephanie Simpson, who did an excellent job preparing the horse and getting him ready.

A disappointing performance really only happened in the second and third phase of the event – the dressage was sensational, but obviously on cross country and in show jumping we didn’t get the result I wished for. I felt like I rode pretty well, but Thomas felt a bit green and overwhelmed in the moment. The good news for me is he is a good, sound young horse that has his best years ahead of him.

As I drive home, I have no regrets in how I prepared; I feel like I gave 100 per cent and it just didn’t come off as planned. It’s as simple as that.

Even though this moment feels like life depends on it, life goes on and I’m looking forward to getting home and spending time with Silva, Nox and Leo and regrouping for the season ahead. I love this sport and enjoy a good competition and deep down I know I’m not far off some of the best riders in the world.

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