Going it Alone

Equestrian Canada competition coach jump specialist Louise Crooks doesn’t think anyone should be coachless at a competition. In fact, the 30-year industry veteran, who operates Crooks Equestrian in Langley, BC, says if she ever returned to the show ring, she wouldn’t do it alone. “I would have somebody on the ground, absolutely.” While some folks are comfortable regularly showing solo, extenuating circumstances (sickness, budgetary issues, scheduling conflicts) might land a rider at a show having to fend for themselves. Not to worry; a few practical tips can help a potentially intimidating situation become way more manageable. Preparation is key. Make a list and fastidiously organize and pack show gear, paperwork, and the trailer the evening before. Arrive at the barn early. If something goes awry, such as your horse deciding not to load, getting frazzled is less likely as you have time to deal with it. At the show, never…

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