Gymnastic Clinics (January 18th and first and third weekend
Paul's clinics have become a staple in the heart of Area
II Eventing. This series in particular seeks to liven up the
dreary winter months with some jumping fun!
Paul uses his experience both in teaching and riding at the
upper levels of Eventing to develop clinics that build a strong
foundation that benefit a horse and rider of any level. Clinic
exercises work to improve the horse's rideability to the fences,
the rider's balance, and the horse’s form in a fun,
positive team environment.
The clinics will take place in Morven Park's indoor ring with
all new footing that is fantastic. Lessons will last one hour
for groups of three or four riders, for all levels from Green
horses and going up through the Eventing levels (Baby BN,
BN, N,T,P,I). A “Dressage Over Poles” group will
be offered if demand exists for those non-jumping riders looking
for something different for mid-winter training. The next
two clinics will be held Feb 1st or 2nd, and Feb 15th or 16th.
Cost is $90 per horse which includes Morven’s ring fee.
A $5 discount is available to YRAP and Area II Adult Riders
members. Auditors are welcome to watch at no charge.
To sign up, please email Pat
Palmer at with the following information:
Day preference (Sat or Sun), and
Any other information that might be helpful for forming a
MidSouth Training Level 3-Day- October
Team CWF headed
out to Lexington, KY for the MidSouth Training Level Three
day on October 16th. The CWF Team felt it would be a good
education for both horses and riders to compete in a full
format training level three day. Colleen McKitrick road her
new mount Flight Risk (Ryder), Laura Kiff rode Courageous
,and DeAnna Burke rode Davinci (Pickle). All horses arrived
in good condition and settled in nicely.
Thursday, October 17th was the first inspection jog. The
horses looked fit, polished, and ready to compete and all
passed without any problem. The CWF team rode all rode Dressage
late afternoon on Friday. The day was beautiful and sunny
and each rider put in a great test; they were all consistent,
obedient, and well ridden. DeAnna and Pickle were in 2nd,
Colleen and Ryder in 7th, and Laura and Courageous in 13th.
The morning of cross country we woke up dark clouds that
promised to rain on us at some point during the day. Colleen,
DeAnna, and Laura all walked the course one more time and
after some final instructions from Paul they were all ready.
DeAnna and Pickle headed out first on Phase A in the pouring
rain. Pickle within the first minute of roads and tracks had
spooked and spun around, dumping DeAnna in the mud with Pickle
running back to the barn at a full gallop. Fortunately Colleen
and Ryder were headed to the start of Phase A and Pickle stopped
to visit. Paul helped DeAnna get back on Pickle and they were
off once again and had to ride Phase A at a canter for the
most part to catch up lost time. Besides that incident, each
rider finished roads and tracks and steeplechase clean and
on time. The entire CWF crew helped cool and walk horses in
the 10 minute box as all three riders were there around the
same tim!. As each rider headed out on cross country the horses
looked strong, fit, and ready to tackle the very large and
long training level course. Even in the rain and the mud,
each rider rode aggressively and came home clean and just
under the time. There were smiles all around and everyone
was thrilled with their horses and for the rest of day the
horses were pampered and the tack was cleaned of all the mud.
DeAnna and Pickle still stood in 2nd, Colleen and Ryder moved
up to 3rd, and Laura and Courageous moved up to 9th. Not bad
to have 3 riders in the top 10 out of 44 riders!
The final jog was again no problem and each horse passed
with flying colors. Show Jumping turned out to be a mixed
bag for the team with two highs and one disappointment. Laura
and Courageous had a double clean round and moved up once
again to finish in 7th place, great job! Colleen and Ryder
were next for the CWF team and they were having a fabulous
round until mid-way through the course when Ryder was spooked
by the puddle or something under an oxer and had a stop. Colleen
really had to work to get him over that fence and then finished
the rest of the course with no additional problems. Unfortunately
the stop and extra time dropped them out of the placings which
is so disappointing after having a flawless dressage and cross
country day. DeAnna and Pickle were last of the team to go
and jumped a very nice double clean. The first place rider
had two rails, which moved DeAnna and Pickle up to first place.
Woo Hoo, a blue ribbon for Team CWF.
Although it would have been a perfect event if Ryder had
not been spooked by the one oxer, overall it was a great event
for everyone. Both horses and riders grew with the experience
and will continue to improve as they take on their next challenges.
The help and support of the entire team throughout the event
is what made the event fun and memorable. The times spent
drinking hot cocoa and coffee (Thank you Myra!), joking around
during the down times, having a wine and cheese party after
cross country (Thank you Marilyn and Jason), and getting to
know each other more is really what makes away shows fun.
Thank you Allison, Myra, Jason, and Marilyn for your support,
encouragement, and help with the horses and riders.
Mark you calendars for Haygard MidSouth Three Day for October
2014, Team CWF will be back!
Horses and Riders looking good at the first jog
out on XC in the pouring rain
the Course in the Rain
Park Horse Trials & Area II Championships- October
CWF enjoyed another weekend with warm and sunny weather summer
temps at Morven Park in Leesburg, Virginia. Everyone rode
great this past weekend and although not a perfect weekend
like Seneca, a pretty darn good one overall.
Monica & Harley and Tori & Jazzy
started the weekend off well in the Intermediate B division.
Monica had a very nice dressage, only 1 rail down in the show
jump and then blazed around the cross country with the fastest
time of the division to finish in first place! Tori and Jazzy
are preparing for the CCI** at Fair Hill so didn't run XC,
but had a beautiful clear show jump round.
Byron & Chance and DeAnna & Pickle
competed in the Area II Sr. Training Championships. Byron
and Chance posted two double clean rounds to finish in 5th
place in a large and very competitive division. Way to go!
DeAnna and Pickle were 3rd after dressage and had a fabulous
XC round within the time, but DeAnna jumped the wrong Training
#17 (non championship fence) and was technically eliminated,
Laura & Cory and Colleen & Ryder
competed in the Area II Jr/Young Rider Training Championships.
Laura and Cory had an unusually tense dressage, but posted
two double clear rounds to finish in 8th. Colleen and Ryder
had a nice dressage, but had a couple of problems on the XC
to move them down the placings then finished on a nice show
jump round. Both Laura and Colleen are well prepared and ready
to kick some butt at the Midsouth Training 3-day in Lexington,
KY in two weeks.
Haley and Grace had another nice dressage
and a beautiful clean show jump in Junior Training division.
They had one stop at fence #5 on cross country, but then finished
the course looking like are ready to move up. They finished
in 5th place.
Crys & Tully competed in the Training
Rider division and are continuing to gain confidence as a
team. Crys dressage improved, had one rail down in the show
jump, and looked fantastic and confident around the cross
country. They finished in 11th place.
Christie & Cassidy competed in the Novice
division. She was green in the dressage and show jumping,
but was awesome around the the cross country, not bad for
a 4-year old!
From Left to Right: Haley, Laura, Paul,
Christie, Colleen, Erin, and Taylor
Valley Horse Trials - September
Great weekend for CWF at Seneca, with riders
taking advantage of the beautiful weather and mild temperatures
Laura Kiff and Courageous had three solid phases and finished
4th in the Junior Training. Haley Carspecken and True Grace
are still getting to know each other and had a few problems
in the show jump, but then rocked around the cross country
like pros and finished in 10th in the Junior Training. Great
to Haley and Grace building a partnership, should be smooth
sailing ahead for them. Unfortunately the three senior training
riders were not able to run cross country when it was cancelled
after a long hold on course. The divisions were pinned as
a Combined Test: DeAnna Burke and Davinci placed 1st, Colleen
McKitrick and Flight Risk placed 4th, and Byron Poindexter
and MAC in Vegas placed 11th. The final CWF rider of the weekend
was assistant trainer Christie McKitrick with her own young
horse, Pop Fly, competing in the beginner novice. This was
Pop Fly's first recognized show and besides a few green moments
she did great! Looking forward to seeing her progress and
Congratulations to Haley and Laura for completing
their qualifications for the Haygard South Training Three
day! Next stop is the Middleburg Horse Trials at the end of
The Champagne Wishes training level crew
packed up early Saturday morning and headed up to Elkton,
Maryland for the Fair Hill horse trials. We met up with Tori
Long and Jazzy who made the trip up the previous night all
the way from North Carolina to compete in the Intermediate.
Tori started off the day with Jazzy, who
hadn't been out since the Virginia CCI* this Spring and since
being married! Although not their best dressage and show jumping,
the cross country was clean and they knocked the rust off
after the summer break and are looking confident going into
The training level crew was next. Cyrs was
excited to compete at her first Training level event with
Tully. They had a very nice test and finished the Dressage
in 3rd place. They added one rail in the show jump and a few
time penalties XC to finish in 8th place. Erin was riding
her young horse Faye in the Junior Training as well. and had
a nice dressage even though Faye was more interested on what
was going on outside. They added two rails and some time on
cross country, but had a great go around the XC that I'm sure
will build Faye confidence at the level going forward. Haley
and Grace were competing at their very first show together
as a team. They had a nice dressage although Grace was a bit
lazy and Haley really had to keep her going. Their show jumping
and XC showed some disconnect that is often seen in a new
partnership and had two silly stops at different fences on
XC. Grace was too busy spooking at the fence judges and never
really focused on the fences ahead of her. I'm confident Haley
and Grace will sort out the kinks together and when they do
watch out everyone!
DeAnna rode Pickle around the Training. Their
dressage didn't score as well as usual as they are figuring
out the balance between obedience and expression. Pickle was
a bit naughty in the SJ and wanted to be too strong and dropped
two rails, but by the time they got to XC all was good and
they had a fantastic round.
Congratulations to riders who are one step
closer to qualifying for the Haygard South Training Three
day, I'm confident everyone will qualify for the CWF fall
road trip. Next stop is Loudoun Hunt Pony Club Horse Trials.
See you all there!
A busy weekend for CWF at Loch Moy! On Saturday
Monica Gaebe started things off in the Intermediate, finishing
7th with Harleyquin. DeAnna Burke's Pickle completed his first
Training nearly perfectly but for one steering issue in a
cross country combination...he will undoubtedly come back
to kick everybody's butt once he has a little more experience.
In the Junior Training, Laura Kiff finished in 6th in her
second Training with Courageous; Erin Miller and Fassona had
a bit of a rough cross country but will return to fight another
Sunday was Junior Open Novice: Madison Boyd and Josie are
still working out the kinks and had one silly stop at the
last fence on cross country, but all other phases were beautiful!
Crys Ayala and her new horse H.M. As Spirits Go finished in
6th at their first event together - we are so excited to see
what this pair does in the future. Last but certainly not
least Mikayla Howitz and Black Gold returned to Loch Moy for
their first Novice and conquered the blue ribbon again!! CWF
is on a roll!
Rides for Haley and Cyrs - July
Congratulations to both Haley Carspecken for the purchase
of Grace and to Cyrs Ayala on the purchase of Tully. The CWF
team is looking forward to seeing both partnerships build
as they progress through the levels.
Busy Two-Show Weekend - May 18th
The local show this weekend was Kelly's Ford down in Remington,
Virginia. Christie McKitrick and working student Sophia Fricke
left the barn at about 5:30 am to make it for Sophia's dressage
time of 7:55! Sophia rode Pat Palmer's Flight Risk in the
gelding's first Training. Sophia was pleased with his improvements
in his dressage test, though the judge didn't entirely agree,
giving them a 40. He is still a bit green to the fences, but
she brought him home clean on cross country and just one rail
in show jumping to finish in 4th place!
Christie decided to take Felix in the Prelim/Training division,
because of all the time off he had after Plantation. He was
definitely a bit rusty, scoring a 36 in the Prelim dressage
and dropping one rail in the show jumping, but he was very
good overall. He breezed through the Training cross country,
coming in with the second-fastest time (the fastest being,
of course, Sophia and Flight Risk!).
Christie is aiming Felix for the Prelim at Difficult Run
Pony Club Horse Trials in just a few weeks, where Sophia is
also going Training with Flight Risk.
Meanwhile, Paul took True Grace to Fair Hill for the Prelim
there. Grace put in a beautiful test, showing huge improvements
in her consistency and accuracy. Paul was very pleased with
her. They maintained their score of 29 after jumping a clean
show jumping round. Halfway through a foot-perfect round Grace
slipped in the mud and twisted over the corner, dislodging
Paul. A bit of a disappointing end when Grace was going so
well; however it is good to know that she was in 2nd place
and performing perfectly, just tripping up in the slick, rain-coated
grass. There will always be another day!
TIME WORKING STUDENT POSITION
have an opportunity for a reliable, friendly, hard working
person to join the Champagne Wishes Farm team. Paul is an
ICP Level III certified instructor and has successfully coached
riders from all levels, from Beginner Novice to Advanced,
and onto the North American Junior Young Riders team. Past
student successes include team gold medals from NAJYRC, Area
II Intermediate Young Rider Champion, and AEC winners. In
exchange for mucking, turnout, grooming, and general barn
work, the successful candidate will learn to run a small eventing
barn in the heart of the Virginia eventing scene. You will
also receive lessons, board for your horse,
coaching at events, and opportunities to help train young
Housing available.Own transportation is a must.
12-month position available August 2013.
PART TIME WORKING STUDENT POSITION
We are offering short, two-week
part-time working student positions for the summer of 2013.
The potential working student would work for a certain number
of hours, to earn lessons or coaching. The student would learn
the ins and outs of running a professional barn, from chores,
to conditioning work, to grooming, as well as all other horsemanship
and stable management
aspects. No space for a horse.
Some ups and downs this past
weekend at Plantation Horse Trials, but overall a successful
weekend. For more details on how everyone did, ensure to read
blog. Below are some pictures from the weekend.
Looking forward to seeing everyone out again at the Loudoun
Horse Trials at the end of the month. For individual results
go to our 2013
& Felix after a clean Show Jump
Wine & Beer Party
Colleen and Rocky through the Intermediate water on their
way to a 5th place finish!
Horse Trials - April 7
and DaVinci performed beautifully in the Training Rider division
and finished third! Christie McKitrick and Fanfare put in
a solid round at Training to finish fourth and are ready to
move up to Prelim at Plantation. Cameron Rouse rode Summer
around the training and finished in 8th. Thank you to Lee
Rouse for taking some amazing photos!
Christie & Felix
- Training 4th Place
(Lee Rouse Photograph)
& Summer - Training 8th Place
(Lee Rouse Photograph)
(Haley's Mom) providing support
(Lee Rouse Photograph)
& DaVinci - Training 3rd Place
(Lee Rouse Photograph)
Pines Horse Trials I & II - March
9-10 and March 16-17
The eventing season is well underway way
and the CWF crew started the season off well at Southern Pines
Horse Trials I and II weekends. The first Southern Pines weekend
we had beautiful clear skies and warmer temperatures, the
second Southern Pines weekend wasn't as nice as you can see
from Colleen's show Jump warm-up picture below. To read the
summary of the two events please visit our Team
CWF Blog. For individual results go to
& DaVinci - Training SP I
& Summer - Training SP I
& Pickle - Novice SP I
(Brant Gamma Photograph)
& Rocky - Intermediate SJ
warm-up SP II
USEA Area II Annual Meeting - January
This past Sunday was the 2013 Area II Annual
Meeting in Leesburg, Virginia. The meeting was especially
important to attend this year because of all of the FEI rule
changes, which are going to have a significant impact upon
the price of events and qualifications for FEI events. Some
of the CWF Team are hoping to complete a one- or two-star
this year, but these changes have important implications for
all of us.
The meeting also had a seminar about the
changes that are being made to the area's Young Riders program.
With a new coach and new coordinators there are going to be
a lot of changes, and hopefully some new life will be brought
into the program! Lynn Symansky and Skyeler Voss are also
starting a pilot program for the YRAP, which should bring
even more young riders into the program. The YRAP coaching
pilot program is revitalizing the program in how it seeks
to prepare riders to compete at the upper levels required
for the Young Riders Championship. This will definitely help
the younger generation of CWF riders, and this new energy
is very exciting for us to witness.
Last but not least,
awards were also given out at the meeting, and we are proud
to announce that Colleen McKitrick and Rocmaster
won the Area II Intermediate Young Rider Champion
Twitter, and Blogging oh my!
Champagne Wishes Farm
is getting up to speed with its social media. Champagne Wishes
Farm now has a twitter account (team_CWF),
moved over to a new Champagne
Wishes Farm facebook business page, and started a blog
that you can follow and have updates automatically emailed
to you. Don't miss a thing and get connected with Team CWF
for Spring 2013
Now that many of us have figured out the
spring event schedule, it's time to make sure that your horse
will be fit and ready for the first competition of the year.
Conditioning is a huge piece of success in eventing, and you
can never start planning too early!
It's especially important if you are planning
to start competing early this year. If you're heading to Southern
Pines in March, you need to have a conditioning plan in place
as soon as possible. Contact Paul this week if you need help
formulating a schedule! Fit, happy horses are always the goal.
Although it feels like the winter is endless,
it's already mid-January, which means we are about a month
out from our team's first show of the season! Colleen McKitrick
and Rocmaster will be heading to Pine Top the weekend of February
23. Until then it's grid work and dressage tune-up!
Planning for the Start of Show Season Party
is under way; expect to hear a date and location soon! It's
tentatively planned for Saturday, February 9th, at the McKitrick
residence in Leesburg.
Cavaletti and Gymnastics
Winter Clinic Series
Paul will hold three gymnastic clinics this
winter to keep you and your horses fit, agile, and ready for
the Spring season. This first clinic of the series of three
will be on January 19th and 20th and will combine the use
of ground poles, cavaletti, grids and single fences. The
next two clinics will build upon the first clinic's concepts
with progressive complexity suitable to each level. Lessons
will last one hour for groups of three or four riders, for
all levels from Green horses and going up through the Eventing
levels. The next two clinics will be held Feb 2nd or 3rd,
and Feb 16th or 17th. For additional information please see
the attached flyer.
To sign up, please email Pat
Palmer with rider's name, horse's name, level, horse/rider
experience, telephone number, day preference (Sat or Sun),
and any other information that might be helpful for a forming