There is still a ways to go for perfection

21 Apr



London International Horse Show - Olympia , 15-21 December 2009


I loved and still adore Edward and Totilas—they took us all to ‘the promised land’.
Power and expression and serenity. A true partnership, with harmony and generosity on both sides.
The ultimate fantasy: that the black stallion really cares what we want and is an active partner in flying to the heavens.
Of course, no sooner had this pair ascended such dizzying height, even before holding all World Records, but the backlash had to start.
The hind legs did not match the front.
The extravagant movement was the product of chains and straps.
Etcetera, etcetera.


char and valegro

Now, we have a new world record holder partnership, and it is even more understandable that the backlash has begun.
Not only do Charlotte Dujardin and Valegro hold all 3 world records; not only are they Olympic individual gold and European individual gold, AND now individual World Cup—putting them in direct line for the Grand Slam, should they be able to stay at the top of their game for upcoming World Equestrian Games—but they have accomplished all this in 2 years, almost never looking back since the amazement that just continued to grow at Rotterdam’s European Championships in 2011, where the combination was part of the British gold-medal team for GBR’s first European Championships. Ever.
Charlotte is now only 28 years old. At least Ed had the decency to wait until he was well into his 30s and had the usual ups and downs of top sport before he and Totilas found each other and made magic that still rings in many hearts !!

All teasing aside, I can only wonder at the people who ‘don’t like the music’ of this new kur, just unveiled at Lyon in the World Cup Finals (Of course, being Charlotte, she had only ridden it twice at home and Lyon was the third time she had ever ridden it through).
But I wonder more at the people who now find Valegro ‘too tight in the neck’ and not quite as loose as he was in other performances. Who do not understand why THIS Grand Prix was awarded a new World Record score of 87.13, breaking the pair’s previous World Record.
We all see what we want to see. We all see what we think we already understand. Perception IS reality.
Dreams and desire however, cannot rule here.


Valegro look of eagles(Chronicle of Horse)

This combination is the new standard for connection, for expression, for what their mentor Carl Hester has defined as dressage:  sit,push, and responsiveness.

And  of course, they are still 12 + points from perfection.



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