Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Hawley Revisited

We are so grateful to have had the opportunity to once again host a Hawley Bennett Clinic here at Dragonfire. For the horses and riders that participated in this and the last clinic with her, it was clear that there was a significant improvement in their styles and ability to handle challenges together. For the riders who were new,  their eyes were opened a little bit wider to the possibilities of what they could be working on. Either way, it was an impressive group of horses and riders which makes for an exceptional clinic!

Each day, before the first morning jump sessions started, a few riders headed to the Dressage court to take advantage of a little private time with Hawley. Kammy Bhala, Caroline Dein, and myself all benefitted greatly from these highly intense sessions on the flat. No detail goes unnoticed by Hawley, nor do you finish a movement until it is done exactly, and I have the sore abs to prove it.

What is most striking about Hawley's teaching style over fences is her ability to push a rider/horse combination further than their comfort zone and ultimately to success. Although her exercises can be set by anyone, it is her keen eye and overwhelming positive energy (mixed with a little "I'm-going-to-make-you-do-it-whether-you-want-to-or-not") that encourages even the timid rider to swing away, to use a baseball term. Even in challenging the riders or horses to do more difficult jumps than they are used to, perfection is her goal and it will be achieved by the end.

Team Dragonfire will miss Hawley as she heads to the East Coast in pursuit of her own intensive training towards the Olympic Games this Summer in London. We wish her the best of luck and the ride of her life!

             A video recap of the clinic courtesy of Taylor McFall and Roses Are Blue

Everybody's favorite Rider/Rugby Player, Ian Diery,  guides Oscar thru the hard turns

Kaitlin Hall and Holly Wenzell represent Three Bay Farms with great rides

Earl McFall guides young Merriewold Kasey in his first clinic

Natalie Jensen and Wrigley working towards the CIC1* 

Makena Graber gives Mr. Chew a good ride thru a grid

High Times and Jennifer McFall are looking towards the CIC 2** after a great clinic

Cori Davis gets it done aboard "Big Willy"

Earl McFall takes four year old home-bred, Rouge et Blanc DF, over his first skinny

Meghan Lawrence giving a great ride in the tidy two stride

It was business time for Taylor McFall this weekend

Caroline Dein and Lucid Opposition negotiate the skinny at the end of a tidy triple

Hannah Jarvis is classic on her lovely mare
Four Year Old OTTB, Lady's Comet is as bold as they come with Jennifer McFall
Merissa Underwood and Danny California had a wonderful clinic with Hawley
Four year old Highland Empress shows the quality of her irish breeding as she displays outstanding ability with Earl 

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Wilton, CA
A full service equestrian facility offering lessons for all ages, training, showing, breeding and sales.

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