Team O'Hanlon

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My blog started in August 2005 to chronicle my progress in training "A First Romance" (a.k.a. Solo) into a world class eventing horse. Born in 2002, as a 10-year old, Solo is close to competing in the four-star division. He's fabulous XC, but does still tend to voice his opinion during dressage... never a dull moment.

Solo's ridden by my daughter, Selena, who competed at her first Olympics in 2008 and the WEG in 2010 with Colombo. Selena also rides several different horses including Pan Am Silver medals, “Foxwood High” out of our home base, Balsam Hall in Kingston, Ontario.

This blog chronicles both our adventures as we continue to train eventing horses. Occasionally, Selena will make an entry on her progress at competitions particularly on the lead up to major events. Please feel free to ask questions or send comments.

Scraped Knee

When we went to tack up Solo today he had a nasty scrape on his leg. It’s on the inside of his knee and it looks as though he may have put his leg through the fence and then drawn…

Lowly 3 Year-Old

With the snow gone for a few days (Solo still has aluminum shoes on) we were able to take Solo back down to the indoor arena and put him back to work. As always, he was happy to have our…

Education Comes in Many Forms

Today the shavings arrived, 1250 bags to be unloaded. I put Solo and his friend inside the stalls about an hour before the shavings arrived. When the shavings truck pulled in, Solo and Waldo were given some hay to occupy…

Snow & Snowshoes

The little sprinkling of snow has put a temporary stop to Solo’s work. We had put a set of aluminum shoes on him for the Royal Winter Fair, they have no stud holes and no grip on the snow. As…

Growing Up

Solo really has grown up a lot in the past two or three weeks. Just being prepared for his trip to the Royal was educational. He is indeed a changed horse. Although he still stops sometimes when you are leading…

The Big Day

We left Solo on his own at the RWF at around 12.30 pm on Wednesday night. We had stayed to watch the show and then we walked him one last time, fluffed up his bed and tucked him in. He…

The Big City

He loaded as calmly and quietly as he had the day before. No excitement and no anxiety. He was given a treat and a small hay net, at 11am we set off to Toronto. He traveled beautifully, despite the journey…

The Time Has Come

Today was meant to be a last lunge, a final practice trot up in the arena and a practice loading in the trailer. Oh well, we got the practice loading done… We turned Solo out this morning and he promptly…

Getting a Grip

Despite all the stopping and starting throughout October, Solo was relaxed and confident when we introduced one more new step today. His ‘under saddle’ progression has been: Walking whilst being led in hand. Walking and trotting on the lunge line,…

Ladies… Start Your Engines

Solo missed yet another weekend of work, not that he is complaining, the weather has been lovely and he and his buddy Waldo are enjoying the time in the paddocks. I was lucky enough to ride in the Mary Wanless…

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