DressageDaily and Debbie McDonald Join Forces to Spread the Word

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Hope Hand a member of the FEI Para-Equestrian Committee read Lynndee Kemmet’s article on DressageDaily and contacted Bergay to encourage her “to go for it”. When Holly told Debbie McDonald she could not use NAJYRC as a qualifier Debbie told her not to give up, that things would work out. That’s where Debbie McDonald stepped in with an e-mail campaign to friends, sponsors and associates.

Here is Debbie’s e-mail she sent to those on her mailing list;

Hello Everyone;
I am on a mission here! I am sure by now you have all read about or have been fortunate enough to watch Holly Bergay ride. If not, let me tell you just a little bit about this amazing young lady. I was doing a Young Rider Clinic in Arizona and was told I would be teaching a handicapped girl. My first thoughts were; "I don't know how to teach a handicapped rider?" Holly was born without a full arm and rides with reins looped and uses her elbow joint to hold the reins. After watching her for a minute I knew this kid could ride and had a feel that most of us would dream of having.

Because of her handicap her seat is amazing and the use of her core strength is what we all strive for. Through this clinic I have become a fan of hers and we keep in touch. Early this year she told me that she was going to try out for the Young Riders. Not the handicap but the able bodied! Not only did she make the Young Rider Team but she called me on the first day with a 65%.

I am writing because she was told that she is not qualified for the 2008 Paralympic Team? They will not accept the scores from the able bodied Young Rider Championships. Even though it was international and there were qualified judges they are making her do another qualifier. I find it very ridiculous but that is the rule. So this means that her last chance to qualify for the Paralympics is in Australia on a borrowed horse in January. She needs to get a 60% or better.

I am donating lessons and want to know if any of you would like to join in by donating lessons, product or anything else you can think of, for auction. If you know of anyone that would help this wonderful young girl live her dream please spread the word for this worthwhile effort?

If you ever wanted to feel like you can really make a difference in someone's life this is your chance. Please talk to anyone that might be willing to give even a small amount, it all adds up in the end and we need to send her and her trainer to Australia!

We have three months to MAKE THIS HAPPEN!!

Thank You!
Debbie McDonald

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