Sunday, January 23, 2011

Another Journey Begins - The Ripple Effect...What Next

Part One

This is probably a good place to add BG was spending plenty of time selling himself as a trainer to anyone who would listen. According to him he was the only one who had worked horses for a BNT before the man retired. BG's story was any success those horses had had in the ring was directly related to BG's skills with the long lines and his work ethic, NOT the BNT who he portrayed as lazy and unethical.

The only thing I knew for sure was the BNT's horses had definitely been worked out of this facility and that they had done well in the ring. Who was responsible for their success was anybody's guess but BG definitely wanted me and others to believe it was him.

The other thing BG was claiming had to do with those horses in his barn. According to him the problems with the horses were all about the owners. Mostly owned by kids or young people with little experience and not a lot of money, these horses were not in training full time. Whatever was going on with those horses was pretty much because of that. BG couldn't be fixing them unless he was paid and they did exactly what he said. According to BG that just wasn't the case and he was frustrated nobody listened to him. His training couldn't be an issue because he just wasn't getting the opportunity to work his magic and when he did, those inexperienced riders just ruined it all.

Now with my friend's mare coming to BG for fixing it would be interesting to see what happened with her. While I had never seen the mare under saddle, I did know my friend's mare personally. She was bred to Legs back in 2006 after the twins were born. When Surprise got sick and needed expensive hospitalization, my friend had sent the horse to me for breeding so I'd have the stud fee to help with the filly's medical expenses so I did have experience with the mare and her personality.

This is a little off subject but I can't resist saying the resulting foal is a beautiful half-Arabian gelding that I swear carries a dilute gene. There's an odd caste to his supposedly bay coat but other than that he looks a lot like his dad. He is equally talented and I can't wait for the day he's going under saddle. Now I was looking forward to seeing what his mother looked like under saddle and to see how BG had really done with the mare's problems.

From the time BG picked up the mare, I had heard what bad shape she was in. I was told her coat was awful and her weight bad too, although not bad as in neglected but just not where it should be. BG was clear he knew what to do to fix those things. Drawing on his years of experience he knew what was just the right thing for this mare.

It wasn't long after her arrival that talk of taking this mare to the Oct show began happening. It was clear from their conversations with the owner and with me that BG and WF really wanted to show the mare at that horse show. WF contacted the owner and told her of the coming event and letting her know they did not charge show fees.

There was so much pressure to show the mare the owner might have thought those show fees had been waived to get her to take the mare except both of us had already been told multiple times that was the barn policy. As much as they wanted to show the mare, the owner did wonder to what extent they would go to get the opportunity. She made an appointment to come see the mare to see what all the fuss was about and asked me if I'd like to come along.

I can still remember the day that I went to the barn with my friend to see how her mare was doing. It had been about a month since the mare had arrived. I hadn't seen the mare worked even once. That work had been done when I wasn't around but I had heard she was doing great. I also heard that she was trained in an odd manner and no one could really figure her out except BG. According to him even WF couldn't ride this mare as well as he.

This mare is a beautiful light colored palomino. When I'd seen her last she had been hanging out being a pasture ornament and was in the kind of shape you'd expect. Now looking at her jogging down the rail towards me, my jaw hit the ground. I sure hadn't seen the mare in this light before. She may have issues but she definitely had "the look" and maybe even the talent of a western horse that could win it all if she could ever get those issues worked out.

During this session the mare showed no signs of the issues that had caused the demise of the lease/purchase agreement. Knowing those issues had been pretty frightening, I guess it was reasonable for my friend and I both to assume that BG was indeed well on the road to fixing this mare.

These assumptions surely affected my perceptions of BG as a trainer but I still had some reservations. There were those show horses in his barn that never did quite cut it in the ring except for the one horse there he had nothing to do with training, WF's horse.

To be continued..................

A Little Thickening

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  1. Looking like an odd setup.I truly dislike anyone who espouses thier own virtues by means of demeaning someone else especially if that someoen else was thier employer.BG is starting to sound like a Big GOOF

  2. fern, looking back at all this stuff I can't help but wonder what I was thinking.

  3. Mikael, I think that is the difference, looking back.You already know how it ends so it is easier in hindsight to see the pitfalls .In the monment , it might have given you pause , but often wee have so much else on the go and on our minds we brush off those little feeling sof ???? till it is already well into the situation . Even for me reading ,I am thinking ,hmm that doesn't seem right ,but that is because a) I know it went wrng ,and b) I am not sitting on a horse (training ) and watching it happen with my focus split between that ,family issues and just time constraints in general

  4. I'm sorry you went through so much, but again, I love reading your stories. You're a great writer.

  5. Well sounds good, but I am suspicious by nature and would have also been suspicious of him especially if I had never seen him ride the mare.

  6. It sounds as if, like most situations, it was complicated--and it's going to take time to sort out what's the truth.

  7. fern, I know you are right about that, that's for sure. I had a lot going on but boy this whole mess only made things so much worse.

    Carol, thanks. I do enjoy writing although I could have done without this story in my life.

    Crystal, I think I need to be more suspicious. A little caution could have gone a long way here.

  8. Do you have to make an appointment to visit your horse when it's at a trainer's barn? I can understand agreeing on a time to watch it being worked but what if you just want to visit? I don't know the ropes but I would be uncomfortable if I wasn't allowed to see my horse at will.

  9. Ms Martyr, well not necessarily to visit but usually to see that horse worked. If you think about it, if they don't know you're coming that horse might have already been schooled for the day when you arrived. And some barns will already have the horse tacked up and waiting so they aren't taking up your time with those things. It depends on the place.

    However, like you I wouldn't be comfortable someplace I wasn't even supposed to visit my horse without their approval.

  10. I can understand a horse giving it all for one person and not so much for another. Sometimes we just 'click' and magic happens. SOmeone else steps into the irons and it just isn't as nice or it all falls apart.

    Hindsight is a mighty powerful thing. Sometimes it makes us see the future a bit more clearly- other times it makes us want to just kick ourselves good and hard. When you are in the moment though, it may all look like roses.

  11. I would kind of worry about the putting down of the BNT...

    However not knowing any of the back story on this, I cant blame you for being impressed that he fixed the mare.... now for the rest of the story I guess...

  12. Why does life have to be so complicated? It would be nice if we knew what was going to happen but life just doesn't work that way does it. I'm with Fern, BG is starting to sound like Big Goof!

    Great writing as always Mikael, you sure keep us on the edge of our seats!

  13. I am always leery of someone who claims they can "fix" an animal, when it is usually the PEOPLE who need the fixing.

  14. Every time I sent a horse off to a trainer, I insisted that the trainer also train me as the rider so that I could take over the training in the same way as seamlessly as possible. I think it should be a horse trainers job to also train the horse owners and riders, otherwise all their hard work will go down the drain.