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Tue, 2011-05-03 19:08

The Road To Rolex Part 6: Heather Gillette

Authored By: Heather Gillette


Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4 | Part 5

The road goes ever onward...

One of my mantras that I repeat to my students is "LISTEN to what your horse is telling you, that is your job". That is what I did on Saturday afternoon. Was it hard to have my Rolex end that way, certainly. Was it the correct thing to do, absolutely.

(Left: Heather and Questie after their dressage test at Rolex. Josh Walker/USEA Photo.)

My "Road to Rolex 2011" was quite a journey, and it came to a premature end after fence 10 on cross-country. I made the tough but correct decision to retire as it became abundantly clear that Questie was not dealing with the sticky and holding ground. He never told me 'NO', but was not his usual "Rock n Roll" self. As I have said many times now he is as genuine and full of heart as any horse I have ever had the pleasure of riding. It would have been a betrayal to him if I continued to press him as aggressively as I was and a betrayal to myself as a horsewoman as well.

Rolex was memorable! There was the surreal stable evacuation to the Alltech arena. Following Mark Todd and Clayton Fredericks into the stadium and doing a solid dressage test (apart from extra flying changes... Questie!). Leaving the start box and galloping through the crowds and finally watching friends have the weekends of their lives, it was one I will never forget. My family and friends were with me all the way and I can't thank them enough.

Thank you all for sharing this adventure with me too! I have enjoyed writing this blog and hope you have enjoyed reading it!

Can't wait for Rolex 2012! See you there!


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