Red Numbers 2.0

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It took me decades to successfully get around at training level.

I started eventing back when dinosaurs roamed the earth, cough, around 1980…..


The first entry I sent in with a T on it (training level) was in the fall of 1990. Yeah, it made a big impression on me. But it didn’t happen. My lovely ride got a terrible belly ache when we arrived at the show and we had to withdraw.

It was 19 years later, and many MANY attempts before I finally got a number and not a letter at training level!


We won’t talk about the fact that the number was in fact 143.4

Numbers not letters people, numbers not letters!

pile of numbers

It was 3 horses & 2 years after my first training completion before I jumped around my first Preliminary.


Whoop! It seemed I was finally speeding things up and I started to think I had a SLIM SLIGHT MAYBE chance of getting to Advanced before I was too old or broken to saddle my horse anymore.

BE Saddle horse pulley rope

I still remember my very first Bad Eventer fan who came and found me. It was at that particular show. She walked up and said, “Are you Bad Eventer?!” This was waaaay before the logo, and the shirts, and the horse trailer. No one knew who I was. She was a big fan & knew from my blog I was attempting my first Prelim. She said if I got around she was going to buy me a beer! When I got off cross country, true to her word there was a cold Irish beer on my stall door!

Feeling the love………….

BE emoji much love

Things started moving right along and a year later I found myself entered in my first Intermediate.

Intermediate water


I – was – terrified.


BE scared face cartoon diving board DP

I really didn’t think I’d survive stadium…….

BE WP stop 1 BE

Before the event I had NEVER, not ever jumped a show jumping course at full intermediate height in my entire life.


For the record, Intermediate show jumping height is 1.2 meters or 3’11.244 inches. So, it’s basically 4 feet.

In the end, I survived. All I did was kick and hold my breath for the entire show jumping round so it wasn’t exactly pretty, but we did stay in the game.

BE Argento WP Tx Rose Intermediate SJ show jumping 1

Then he jumped around cross country like the cross country machine he is………

and I got my first Red Numbered completion.

BE WP water Int s

That was 5 years ago.

BE 5 year timeline

And I’ve been trying to get back to the level ever since.

I’ve had a couple “test runs” this spring.

BE Zima grey corner Carolina 1

We did a schooling show and jumped around a 4′ show jumping course.


Then after the Carolina 1* we did the dressage and show jumping at Intermediate the next weekend.

but we withdrew before XC because we had just run that massive course the weekend before. We won the dressage, and the first thing the fearless leader says is, “Congratulations, you won. No you still can’t run XC.”

Shrugging woman in doubt doing shrug showing open palms.

Then we jumped clear in show jumping and before I had even started my round he turned to the BadEvent Groom and said, “No matter what she says do not let her put that horse in the trailer tomorrow!”

We withdrew as planned, while in 1st place, in our first Intermediate………………..

I had joked earlier this year when we started planning when we would move up to Intermediate that it would be nice to win a Prelim before hand, you know,  just to prove we were ready.

I never imagined in a million years that might actually happen. At the time of that conversation in, cough, 35 years of eventing I had only ever won a single blue ribbon so I found that prospect unlikely.

BE Blue ribbons Genuine Zima

Well. It didn’t happen, we actually won TWO prelims!

So next week is Red Numbers 2.0


BE Zima water shark Carolina 1


And I can’t even begin to describe how different it feels this time!


Girl Teen Diving

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