A Rey of sun­shine

Your Horse (UK) - - Looking Back At Horsey History -

The first day I met Afor­tu­nado, or Rey to his friends, he was an 18-month-old colt who had been res­cued, along with his mother, from very un­for­tu­nate cir­cum­stances. The first thing I no­ticed wasn’t his glossy coat or ath­letic move­ment, it was his huge per­son­al­ity as he came strid­ing up the field, fear­less and in­quis­i­tive. That was the day I fell for my Span­ish horse. I even­tu­ally took Rey home in 2010 as a two year old and started him the fol­low­ing spring, us­ing the meth­ods I learned from Buck Bran­na­man and Ricky Quinn. Rey em­braced his ed­u­ca­tion with en­thu­si­asm and we had four fantastic years of fun to­gether. Sadly, due to his bad start in life, his body was never as able as his huge heart and I had to re­tire him aged eight, which was dev­as­tat­ing. My big, beau­ti­ful Rey was now re­stricted to gen­tle hack­ing. My part­ner­ship with Rey took me back into the world of com­pet­i­tive Western rid­ing and I now have two lovely Quar­ter Horse fil­lies. Both have their own unique tal­ents and I love them dearly, but ev­ery time I ride them or load them in the horse­box, Rey is watch­ing. The long­ing on his face to be the one go­ing out on ad­ven­tures is painful to see. I try to make up for it by hack­ing him as of­ten as I can, groom­ing him and in­clud­ing him in as much of the yard rou­tine as pos­si­ble. My girls are just learn­ing to trust me and the horse­man­ship is help­ing. Through speak­ing to them in a lan­guage they can un­der­stand, we’re build­ing a bond, but it all takes time. They aren’t as brave as Rey, but they are sen­si­tive and will­ing. Ev­ery day they are be­com­ing more con­fi­dent and I look for­ward to a time when I can take my girls any­where and they be­have as calmly and en­thu­si­as­ti­cally as Rey does. With the help of our horse­man­ship, we’ll get there. Judi Goor, email

Rey at the be­gin­ning of his rid­den ca­reer

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