Hi, my name is Alexandra Duncan, I’m 19 years-old and live in West Vancouver, B.C. I have been riding since I was 3 years-old on a lunge line and running around on my stick horse. When I was 6 years-old I rode in my first dressage show in Victoria in the BC Championships – I was so nervous I trotted my pony right out of the ring! I tried show jumping for a few years but by the time I was 12 I decided to focus on Dressage only.

I am a Young Rider and have competed at the North American Young Rider Championships in 2006 and 2007. I was part of the team gold medal in 2006 which was the first time Canada took a team medal in 18 years. In 2007, Elektra and I won an individual silver medal and gold in the freestyle which contributed to Canada’s hat trick: gold, silver and bronze. During that same time frame I also competed in Germany at the Young Rider World Cup in Frankfurt, Germany.

I am about to set out on a six month trip to Sweden to train with Jan Brink at his farm in Sweden. The days are counting down to the big move and I still have lots to prepare! The packing is endless since I have to pack all my own personal stuff plus everything for Vitall who is coming with me.

Vitall, my newest partner, is a 7 year-old Dutch warmblood gelding that I purchased in Germany last year when I there training with Dutch Olympic rider Ellen Bontje. I will also be bringing along another new partner in crime my 9 month-old French bull dog, Oslo.

I am so excited to go on this new adventure I think it’s going to be a major chapter in my life. I kind of know what to expect since I lived and trained in Germany for sometime but I also think it is going to be completely different. Jan Brink is one of the most respected trainers in Dressage. He has offered me an amazing opportunity and the fact that a simple phone call made one of my dreams come true still shocks me to this day. It just makes you realize that you can achieve your dreams if you just try.

In the final weeks to my departure I am going to be doing last minute touch ups on my Freestyle, having my final lessons with Leslie Reid and meeting with the vets to get all Vitall’s and Oslo’s health papers in order.

I have to laugh at our adventure as all three of us are taking different routes to Sweden. Vitall will leave from Calgary, AB and travel to Luxembourg and then hop on a trailer to Tullstorp. Oslo will leave a little later than the rest of us and fly from Vancouver to Amsterdam to Copenhagen where I will pick him up and we will take the train back to Tullstrop in Hasselholm, Sweden. I will be leaving from Vancouver, meeting my dad in London and going to Copenhagen and then taking a train. Hopefully nothing gets lost along the way!

I will start blogging on June 5th and every other day (or something approaching that) after that. Please join me on my journey and share in my adventures – it’s going to be a wonderful ride. In the mean time, my goal until I get there is to try stay calm, not get nervous and just try to get everything organized! I think I will finally breathe once I am sitting on the plane.