From Foaling Stall to Dressage Ring

Nancy with Izzy

By Nancy Krial

We often hear the saying “time flies” and that can describe how I feel when I tack up my Dutch gelding Isosceles these days. He’ll be seven in May, and I sometimes think, “where did the time go?” as opposed to when his dam, Phlyer, was coming due to foal and the days crawled by! To top it off, Phlyer was eighteen days late so instead of an end of April baby, she had a May 15 foal. Izzy was not a big colt and I remember thinking “I hope he’s going to get to be at least 15.2.” Well, be careful what you wish for!! Phlyer was 15.3 and the sire, Wamberto, was 16.1, but Izzy skipped a generation and is now 17.1, thanks to his grandsires on both sides being 17+ hands…

Izzy had no problems being weaned since he was still in a group of his buddies and happy to be on his way to growing up. Phlyer was more upset with losing her baby, but she adjusted well to going back to being my dressage horse.

The ensuing years were filled with lessons for Izzy, like getting his teeth done, learning to lunge with tack, standing on crossties, etc. He was growing taller quickly, so we decided to wait until he was three to sit on him. Hank Hutson had been working with Izzy, and he was the first one to sit on him with no problems! That was a Saturday and I was on him Sunday. It’s always a bit disconcerting when you go back to the beginning and have no steering and no brakes, but Izzy learned quickly and seemed happy in his work.

He’s now six, coming seven, and I’m planning to ride the First Level tests. Izzy went well at Training Level last year once he became accustomed to the activity you encounter at a horse show. He finished up in the 70’s at his schooling shows and was Training Level champion in the fall. I’m planning to do a few schooling shows to start this show season and then move on to USEF-licensed/USDF-recognized shows. I have my USDF Bronze Freestyle Bar so I’m looking forward to trying a musical freestyle with him also. Izzy has a bright future ahead of him, and I’m excited about riding and showing him in 2020.

Photo by Terry Wetzel (TK Wetzel Photography)

My young dressage horse has been a long time coming, but I don’t believe in rushing youngsters. Izzy is a horse that is fun to ride and a real people horse. Even my husband can handle him as my groom at the shows. When I bred Phlyer for a 2013 foal, I hoped to get a horse that I could enjoy riding and showing. I didn’t expect one this tall, but I have no complaints! I love going to the barn and working with him in lessons or on my own. So, the journey from foal to riding horse has been worth the wait…Izzy is part of the family!!

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