Since our last report, Double E has undergone a series of changes. We are continuing to downsize and to introduce our new breeding into the herd. We are moving toward showing more AMHR/ASPC horses while maintaining the quality of a our smaller AMHA horses. . We have four horses in training with Cassidy Blanton, as we focus more on performance. Jacob has in mind to train and condition his own halter horses for showing in both AMHA and AMHR shows. Jacob sold his heart horse (PIstol) to a nearby neighbor, so at least he won't be too far away from us. We have had two recent visits to Europe and a short visit to Israel to observe the wedding of his eldest nephew. While in Belgium, our dear friends Tanja and Kevin Lathouwers asked us to be the godparents to their daughter, Rayna. Suchh an honor! As well, Jacob was elected president of his local miniature horse club, AREA VII. The club has two AMHR/ASPC shows in the works for 2018! Please see the website at http://areaviiclub.com. Check us out, and come visit us at Double E Ranch!
Following the excitement of 2015, Rich and i prepared for 2016 with plans to scale down on the number of horses we put into training with Casey Campbell and Cassidy Blanton. We started off by placing Pistol in Cassidy's care to train him for driving. To say he was a bit resistant is an understatement. His preferred job has more to do with breeding mares. Plus, he suffers from equine AD/HD. We put our black mare, Gigi, in training with Cassidy a bit later in the season.
Sensa also started in cart, and from the outset we knew we had a winner. Casey is certain he'll be national champion in halter and driving at Nationals in September. We also placed three of Pistol's foals in training with Casey, plus Skunk, Zoie, Thor, Dakota, and Sara. So much for scaling back on our training! Good thing I'm getting a raise this year 👍👍👍!
In February, Rich and I attended the AMHA annual meeting along with our friends Paul and Ailene Tarap. Both parties won several of the much sought after honor roll belt buckles. It was here that the four of us bonded, and the prospect of their showing Mac for the season was born. Not too long after we placed Mac into their custody and they began to show him as an all around stallion. Surprisingly, the Taraps offered to buy him from us. We were so excited to have him live with these great people!
Our horses enjoy their pasture time.
Jacob enjoying an afternoon stroll on Pistol
In March, we had planned to visit some ranches and family back east, but I unfortunately came down with a virus that forced us to postpone. It was just as well, as we needed to prepare for the busy show season that lay ahead. Indeed, I suffered another setback physically that could have prevented me from showing - an infected ingrown toenail that had gone into the bone. After wearing a boot for several weeks (poor Rich had to drive me to work and do the majority of the ranch chores), I was cleared to resume most of my duties.
In the space of a couple of months, we sold some of our best horses including, Mac, Crystal, Gigi, and two of Prince's foals. So, what do we do? Buy more of course! To that end, we have purchased three gorgeous mares from Nancy Rivenburgh, one in foal to Jesse James whose child will be a 3/4 sibling to Hunter's sire, Rivenburghs Jess Let me Impress. Speaking of Hunter, he has learned the art of breeding and is happy with his job this season. At this time, we are pleased to announce that he will go back into training with Adelyn Rowland. Can hardly wait to see how he does in cart! In addition, we purchased a stallion (Electrify) from Casey that is a full brother to Wingates Infamous Mi, who is sweeping in halter and single pleasure driving. Indeed, Electrify did superbly in halter and performance at his first show in June! As well, we bought two gorgeous fillies from Casey sired by Rebel that will stay with Casey for training next year. Earlier in the year, we purchased a Tripoli filly from Kim Sterchi. Finally, we obtained a super cute triple registered filly from Stacy Score of Mountain Meadows.
Wingates EE Rebels Rhianna
Wingates EE Rebels Reflection
Mountain Meadows Promises In The Dark
The show season this year has been full of surprises! Initially, I had planned to drive Gigi, but she sold midway through the season. She was the high point driving horse at Brookside and made her current owner very happy. Crystal also performed well in her first show with her new owner, as well as with Casey. Mac shone with the Taraps in their first show with him. Sensa has lived up to the hype having dominated in his amateur and open halter and driving classes. Now on to nationals! Thor has gotten better and better and is now with our good friend, Diane Dorigan. Both are very happy at last count. Zoie, our beautiful, grey country pleasure driving and halter mare has done increasingly better as the season has progressed. Fingers crossed for Regionals! Pistol is settling a bit, and I've enjoyed driving him immensely. Cassidy has enjoyed better and better placings with him. We hope that continues into Regionals. Songbird, Pistol's firstborn, is the surprise of the season. At the time of this writing, she is leading in honor roll points with me. So exciting! Rich has shown Dakota and Sara to grands as well in two of the local shows. Admittedly, Sonny has done better with his trainer. We are, nevertheless, pleased with his progress. At the end of the show season, he will go over to Belgium. Our partners, Kevin and Tanja Latthowers will incorporate his bloodlines into their breeding program. Skunk is taking over where his brother left off - success galore with Casey in whatever class he enters both in AMHA and AMHR. I have enjoyed success with him as well, but my showing has been divided between him and Pistol. Overall, we are pleased with our results this year and cannot thank Cassidy and Casey enough for their expert training and never ending encouragement. A high point of my show season took place when Brooke Parsley allowed me to show in my first Roadster class with her powerhouse gelding "Player."
Jacob and Sensa bringing home the 2016 Amateur Reserve National Champion, Under Title
It's been a great year for babies as well. Pistol has knocked it out of the ballpark with his conformational contributions to our gorgeous mares. He's sired three gorgeous colts and one beautiful filly this year. New pictures are forthcoming. We have an amazing filly out of our half sister to Grahams Ragtime that we call Destinys Double Shot of Vodka on the Roxx. Finally, we were pleased with the arrival of our first filly sired by Samis Breakdancer - should be an incredible moving machine! She's very small, so we named her Tiny Dancer for short.
Finally, we have just returned from our annual summer trip abroad. This time we did far less driving! Before heading to Sweden to visit Rich's side of the family where we had the best of times, he and I got to see some incredible ranches and horses. Sophie Monchicort near Normandy, France was such an accommodating host! She let us stay in her beautiful guest house on her farm and wined and dined us accordingly. Her horses are spectacular, and she has a group of teenage kids who help her on the property and are learning how to show. So cool! We visited Cedric DuBroque who is one of the best trainers in Europe and saw his lovely foals sired by the famous "Junior." Afterward, we visited family in Sweden but managed to sneak in a visit to Emma and Margaretta Lindahl who are in the midst of building a major training center near Stockholm. They have Caspian horses in addition to minis. At Eva Rubin's, we were treated to her driving of multiple hitched horses as well got to see the famous Patsy Cline who is confirmed in foal to Lymricks Bravado. Next, we rented a car and drove to Denmark. We met the lovely Gitte Bager and her charming daughter Katja. They own the famous Night Rider and allowed us the privileged opportunity to drive him! It was a dream come true! Next we visited Kai and Wolfgang from Baldensey Miniatures. They live on a hillside ranch overlooking the majestic Baldensey lake. We were treated to a photo shoot of their exquisite newborn filly and to a lunch fit for kings in their beautiful home right out of a magazine! The piece de resistance took place when we visited our friends and business partners, Kevin and Tanja Latthowers, of Belgium. For the last year they have been building their farm and dream house. Such a beautiful place, such wonderful people, so much good food and drink - so many lovely memories. We attended the summer show in Holland with them, and I even got a chance to show Tanja's heart mare, EBF SH Shines bright like a Diamond. Overall, the trip was amazing!