Sixteen-Year-Old Rosemary Julian-Simoes (Rosie) travelled with her mom, Julie Julian, and their horse Proteus (Don Schufro x Pari Lord) an 8-year-old Danish warmblood and full brother to Paragon, from Barrington Hills, Illinois for the first week in 2013 to take part in the EDAP program constructed by Lendon Gray and Robert Dover. Rosie shared what she learned during the week, “The main thing I have taken away from this week is how much potential we have. The first time I felt that was with Robert. He really pushed us by saying, ‘I know you can do it. You have to believe it. You have to envision the best version of yourself and your horse.’ That is when everything seemed to click and I had the most amazing ride I’ve ever had in my life. Proteus just got it.
Robert had us work on what he call the rubber band exercise. In the trot on the arch of the circle you ask your horse to expand into the greatest grandest extended trot you can, then when you come near the letter A or C, near the corner, you collect. He wanted us to imagine we were going into passage with the hind legs coming through. The first time I did it, I really didn’t go for it. Robert noticed right away. He said it again that he wanted me to envision that I was doing the best that I could. On the next go around, I really pushed and worked harder for it. Because I felt that Robert knew I could do it, I pushed harder and Proteus just sprung off the ground. He really came through and worked extremely hard. When I came to the letter A, it was the most collected trot I have ever felt in my life. He (Proteus) bounced under me and was light and nice in the frame because he was using his whole body, not just flipping his front legs along. He was really engaging his hind legs and using his back.
“Rosie continued, “My ride with Courtney King-Dye too was so good. She really got through to us. I need to ride him so he’s not common because he’s a nice horse. Sometimes I forget that because it’s nice to just go around on his nice smooth trot. Courtney helped us in the half-pass, engaging his hind legs more by starting in a leg-yield. My inside leg started moving him first (with the idea of the outside rein) to increase the flexion and then going into the half-pass.”
In 2013, Rosie will work to qualify and compete at the NAJYRC Young Riders, make the top 10 in USDF Year End Awards, and qualify for the Festival of Champions. Rosie’s mom, Julie Julian has done all the training, giving Rosie the chance to ride Proteus from Training Level on up to Prix St. George. In addition, Christine Traurig gives them guidance on their farm as a clinician.
Twelve riders and 10 official auditors participated in the clinic and had the chance of a lifetime to work with amazing dressage riders, trainers, and judges such as: Six-time Olympian Robert Dover, 2012 U.S. Olympians Jan Ebeling and Tina Konyot, U.S. Olympians Lendon Gray and Courtney Dye, international riders Katherine Bateson Chandler, Tuny Page and Michael Barisone, and international judges Natalie Lamping and Anne Gribbons. All the clinicians volunteered their time and expertise to the up and coming riders.
Riders in the clinic were: Anna Campbell and Cassie Schmidt of Texas, Jackie Cartesio of New York, Nicole Chiapetti and Rosie Julian Simoes of Illinois, Rebecca Cohen of Florida, Katie Foster of Wisconsin, Brandi Roenick of Arizona, Lilly Simons of Connecticut, Ayden Uhlir of Washington, Genay Vaughn of California and Mattie Zepernick of Louisiana. Official auditors were: Giulia Cohen and Tasha Mitchell of New York, Hope Cooper and Emily Smith of Massachusetts, Kristen and Nicole Nowak of Rhode Island, and Abby Flieschli, Amanda Hester, Megan Tritch, and Sarah Witney of Texas.