I thought I might highlight another one of my favorite horses from my past. He was a totally different ride than any horse I’d ridden before, or since. Plus who doesn’t like tall, dark and handsome??
Meet Erv…or Erving as I liked to call him.
This horse arrived at my trainers stable the summer after I turned 16, and right after my first “real” horse had been sold to another rider. With that lease over, I was on the hunt for something to focus on. However, I wanted nothing to do with this psycho. He was a 10 year old stallion, and while highly intelligent he was moody, and tolerated only certain people.
A few weeks into his new lifestyle/training Erv had a full scale meltdown in the stall aisle and kicked out, hitting a teenager and throwing her back against a stall. A bad concussion and nasty cut would’ve ended this stallions reign at our stable, but my trainer still thought there was something there. My trainer acquired Erv from his long distance owner, and immediately gelded him.
Many weeks later, I was told that I would now be schooling, and showing him that year for my trainer. After my first ride on this opinionated, dark bay thoroughbred I was hooked. He was smart, incredibly athletic, and desperately needed someone on his side (I’m a sucker for the ones no one else likes). While he had calmed down as a gelding and with lots of training rides, Erving never made things easy. He was a whirlwind to ride, all enthusiasm and sheer determination. We showed a bit in hunters to ease him into the horse show world, but where we really found our sweet spot was in jumpers.
We were pretty successful in the next year and a half that we rode together. I really wish I had more pictures of us riding and showing. He became a totally game ride, who loved his job; I learned the fine motor skills that are required in the jumper ring. And for god sake, I learned how to hold on for dear life. He overjumped everything, and was known to “crack” his back hard. During my senior year of high school my trainer offered him to me for a steal of a price. I was 8 months from college, and had to refuse. I was devastated.
Shortly after I went to school, he went to a wonderful new owner, who I had ridden with for many years. She and Erving dominated the childrens/adults jumper courses with him until he was 18, when he went to on to go teach another younger girl how it’s done at the lower heights. Such a great guy.