October, 2014 – Saint wins again!
What a wonderful treat it is to have a horse like Saint. 100% success, winning at every single show he’s been to, and today was no exception! This time not one but FOUR firsts, and reserve champion high point.
I have wanted to do this for so long.
It’s been my dream to find a vaulter in TN or KY that I could train with for gala evening performances. In his final performance before going to the National Guard, Nathan Brashear and myself on Saint at Black Pearl Paris KY. That is the BEAUTIFUL music of the famous country and western singler, Craig Dodson, who came to the Symposium and created quite an impression of the wonderful work with ACTHA, and how it can help our students. Video here:
Well, I just couldn’t have believed what happened in Georgia! After 15 years of not competing, I finally did it! First time out…two firsts, one second, one third and two qualifying scores for the USDF Bronze Medal.
I knew this boy was good, but how would I have ever known the amazing scores, and amazing thrill it was to come back after a double mastectomy, and do so well.
Thank you so much to the world’s best groom: Nick Tsopanis.
Every day Nick tirelessly warms up Saint, grooms him totally, and looks after him, feeding him and cleaning stables. What a guy! Cannot help to think I really have the world’s two best men in my lives.
We really are sticking to our guns and training hard now for Rio de Janeiro, training him to loan him to a paraequestrian. He will need lots of support to get there, anything from feed to equipment to gas and of course horrendous entry fees….. We’ve proven we can do it…we’re doing our part…. CAN YOU HELP?
May 26, Kentucky – Tennesse – Georgia
RESULT = I came in and joined the USEF/USDF/Booking on line competition site, and I’m roaring to go. I am now riding in the new CKRider Saddle. It’s made by the same people that make the Fluidity Saddle, but for me, it’s just the “Roll’s Royce”, yes it’s certainly more expensive leather, but last night I felt why! I found the aids to get Saint to do a world class passage…NATURALLY! You need to ride right on dark, with a little wind blowing, and the grass a little long and wavy, down the bottom of the property past the fenceline with two spring-enthused tiny calves, and one very emotional and overly defensive alpacca come screaming by….then I reemembered why I’d ordered the more expensive stickier leather.
I could SIT! I didn’t get frightened. It was like I was “sticky taped” to the saddle, but not BLOCKED with those hideous deep seats and big ugly thigh rolls right on top of the horse’s shoulder blades.
I’m calling it the “Anti-Slouch Saddle”. You see I like to “oversit” on my tail bone, or “tuck my but” too much, and “slouch” where the back of my belt is LOWER than the front. It’s a lack of the normal arch in the spine. This saddle MAKES you sit correctly, you don’t have a choice. And, I can’t believe what it’s doing for my legs…you see when I loose my balance, and my legs go wrong it squeaks! SERIOUSLY! I tried to blame the saddle going “well it’s just a saddle that squeaks”, except when I get it right it’s SILENT….ERGH!@#$&)Q*#&
No photos today because I want some really BEAUTIFUL ones to show of my incredible Saint.
April 31, 2014 Kentucky Horse Park
What an AMAZING time we had at Rolex and the Reining Cup selections for the World Equestrian Games. We had tradestands and seat and posture assessments throughout the week, and I still managed to ride Saint every morning. The following day, all the crowds had gone home, the excitement was all over, and here captured at the Education Barn is Kentucky Horse Park Entertainment Director Tommy Fahey. What a beautiful picture!
April 17, 2014 – Black Pearl Farm
It’s been nearly 8 months since we bought Black Pearl Farm in Paris, KY, and finally I get to ride my beautiful “Saint”. Here he is training in the indoor, preparing for the upcoming “Ride to Music Night”…very excited some 70 people will be coming including loads of people from the University of Kentucky, and Asbury University. What a wonderful night to come!
March 13, 2014
US Rider Saves the Day
You won’t ever see me recommend a product unless I use it myself, or use it on Saint, & really believe in it.
US RIDER came to the rescue AGAIN today when the front door lock seized on our living quarters trailer.
The door wouldn’t open for love nor money, so I rang US Rider, and the locksmith came out (it was a 30 mile drive to Jim Crew’s place for him!) really quickly, got in the trailer no problem, and lock fixed and ALL FOR FREE as part of our membership.
The annual membership is NOTHING compared to the two locksmiths on two different occasions, and the TWO tow trucks (one for our trailer, one for the truck) that we have gotten for FREE FREE FREE the night of the truck fire.
All I can say is if you are in the USA and you don’t have US RIDER you’re nuts. AAA won’t find accommodation for your horse, and vets and farriers and specialist HORSE help. And they won’t do much for your trailer either! So, please, if you’re towing do two things 1) go and do a large animal rescue course such as TLAR 2) get US Rider!
March 12, 2014 – EXCITING NEWS!
I made it! BACK AT WORK!
So I said I’d be ready by March 16th (my birthday)…back at work after my double mastectomy…How did I go? FOUR DAYS EARLY!!!
Today I picked up Saint and he looks FANTASTIC! We’re on the way to Florida for lessons, then onto the Kansas Tour Stop. Thank you again Julio and Jessica Mendoza Saint looks amazing!
October, 2013 Saint in training with Julio Mendoza, MD, USA
Dear friends husband and wife team Julio and Jessica Mendoza have stepped in to look after Saint while I have my operation and return hopefully by my birthday (March 16th – LOL – pays to advertise).
Breast Cancer (again) interrupts training…
Well, hopefully this time I’ll get rid of it ALL. The operation is on November 26th, 2013, and they have a very good prognosis. At any rate, I’m too busy to be hampered by nonsense like this for too long…it interrupts my play time with Saint. Keep up to date here: https://colleenkellyriderbiomechanics.com/2013/03/15/colleen-kellys-breast-cancer-struggle/
The Summit – Sept, 2013 Colorado – CELEBRATION!
It’s summit time again…where did the year go?
I had such an incredible year this year, and to be culminating in such a TERRIFIC summit. The quadrille were the best ever.
We don’t train, we only see each other once per year, shows what good training can do for horses.
Isn’t it a WEIRD CO-INCIDENCE that we all have big black horses…cool huh! See you in 2014!
Signal Mountain TN
This is one of our favorite places to keep Saint in the USA. Home of friends Priscilla Roberts and Della Roberts we have regular riding clinics here all the time, and as we are flying in and out of TN to England, it was great to keep doggie Amber and Saint together. Thank you ladies!
June 2014 England, UK
Oh boo hoo! We’re going to miss Saint as we go over the pond to England to give teacher training and riding clinics. He’s in GREAT hands in Tennessee and hope to update photos soon.
Tim Horton’s here we come! We have the visa, we have the work permit, we have the dog permit, we have the horse permit, we’ve had the horse vet check, we’ve had the dog vet check…check check check…not easy but we’re on our way Canada. Hope our Commonwealth friends show is a great time!
June 19 – Iowa and a Tornado!
Iowa State Fair Grounds saw a great turn out. Huge facilities, in fact I got lost several times trying to find the trailers! But, I reckon we’ve seen it all now, ice storms, snow storms, heat and rain, but at the Iowa Tour Stop…this time a TORNADO! Seriously! And sadly great loss of life in Oklahoma just the next state over. Here, safely in the Iowa State Fair Grounds underground shelter were the “army of yellow” volunteers at the tour stop.
There were 2 shelters, and I must say I was very glad to be with a large group of volunteers are they were dank, dripping water and very much underground…all in all not a great combination when you don’t know what’s going on “upstairs”. Thank goodness the volunteers had managed to get in the evening supper so at least we could relax with food. Our troubles were nothing though, as we stopped for a minute’s silence before our meal thinking, and praying, for those who were caught in the storm. We were soon to find out about terrible destruction and loss of life not far from us in Oklahoma. Thank you so much to stable managers Dave and Ryan who WENT OUT WHILE UNDER TORNADO WARNING to get the horses from one safe stable to another! That was an amazingly brave thing to do. I just couldn’t run that far myself, and the boys took care of the horses so well, they’re a credit to the team!
And…the following morning, as the universe would have it, we were able to repay the favor! We get a text that night asking “what time are we leaving” in the morning, and sure enough Dave and Ryan are stuck in the mud with the HUGE freightliner! So, the next morning the Dodge Ram 3500 does it again!!! This time pulling the huge freightliner out of the mud with ease! And, Nick didn’t even take the Hart trailer off, it was still attached!
May 3, 2013 – Saint on Parade – South Carolina
Well most of you know that I’ve been terribly ill and might think it’s pretty nuts for someone fighting cancer to have a horse at all…but as this shows, Saint is blossoming without me! Under the hands of the skillful Kelly Sigler and Nicola Steffanina he has been learning every day! He’s worked 6 days a week, lots on the ground, and in the saddle. Here he is at his very first parade down the main street of Aiken SC to announce the opening of the golfing tournament season.
March 3, 2013 – Pennsylvania
Christine Wertz and Charity Passhaus hosted a wonderful clinic at the beautiful Harmony Horsemanship Center.
Although it was cold, the feeling from the riders and the fun we were having kept us all warm! Not only did Saint and Buckley give great demonstrations to the crowd…but in a very first …we went on a trail ride on the 2nd morning before we started the clinic..in the snow! For an Australian…that’s a dream come true to ride my wonderful “Saint” in the snow!
But more than just “fun in the snow” the people could really put the theory into practice, learning how we could benefit from uphill and downhill, and learning one of our great secrets: how to stop a bolting horse WITHOUT A CIRCLE! Turning sharp circles downhill in snow can be deadly dangerous, and the riders were very grateful to learn this great technique! As we were coming back to the USA from London, the wonderful Kelly Sigler drove our truck and trailer through heavy snow and ice to make it safely to the venue. Yet again I’m so grateful for the “trailer of my dreams”, my HART trailer to carry both Saint and Kelly’s beautiful Buckley to the clinic in safety!March 3, 2013 – Pennsylvania
February 23 – North Carolina
Never really thought this would be it possible! We bought Saint because he was so quite and so bombproof and well trained that we knew he’d be great in front of the big crowds at the tour stops and performances. But, never ever thought we’d get him to JUMP! It was so funny…the first time we put little barrels in the round pen at liberty he crashed through them…again and again! He is so quiet he couldn’t even be bothered to lift his feet, it was HYSTERICAL! Kelly Sigler and Nicola Steffanina are working him in SC while I’m away. If they can manage to get him to jump – they can train ANYTHING!
February 16, 2013 – Aintree UK
Aintree Race Course – home of the famous Grand National (remember “National Velvet”?). The most amazing tour stop ever! Everyone was on fire, and we had the most successful show – EVER! There was such a sea of people waiting for autographs at the tradestand I could barely see Nick at the end doing posture assessments. Thank you to everyone, and especially Lyla Cansfield and my PA Nicole Schneider (based in London). What a trip!
January 19, 2013 – Alabama
What a wonderful tour stop!!! It sure was a scary ride in. Some people got delayed most of the night getting their horses in, but not us! The Gods must have shined upon us again. We hit the ice storm badly, and this is when I really sit back and think what a wise choice we made to really look around for the best trailer on the market. We pulled over for a while in case it was getting worse ahead of us. Just a push of a button, the generator started and we had all the heat we wanted. Nick cooked a wonderful meal, and we didn’t even have to go out in the snow to check our boy in the back. Just opened the internal door, and Saint said thanks for his Winnies Cookie, and then back to sit in the warm, watch TV and wait for news ahead. Got in safely that night, and Saint was in perfect condition for rehearsals the next day. What a horse! Love the photo with the red bonnet showing the audience what “head tilt” looks like with one ear higher than the other.
Nov 29…Welcome to Florida….
Yes! It’s the Police pulling us over. This is the THIRD time we’ve been pulled over by Police to check our health certificates. This Officer was right at the Florida border.
Yes, we were meant to stop at the border, but Kelly Sigler (it’s all her fault LOL) didn’t see the signs (of course no way could be my fault!). We could have received a $150 fine and 3 points off the licence, so if you’re coming to FL…TAKE IT SERIOUSLY! However, this lovely officer not only waived the fine with a warning, but even let us take his photo!
Wed Nov 28 – South Carolina
And…one of the best! This year I’ve teamed up in the USA doing “super clinics”. This way you can come along ride with me and have your biomechanics worked on, but also ride with Kelly Sigler who is an expert on the ground. We did 2 amazing clinics in Lovettesville VA, then came to Wagener SC.
The clinics are great because in the first clinic there were a few problem horses, and Kelly could take them into the other arena for personal attention. That way they got great training, but didn’t feel “left out” of my group, as they could come back later for a lesson with me later in the day. In the 2nd clinic Kelly was able to do more advanced work on the ground. I even showed the crowd how piaffe and passage are trained from the ground. OK Saint’s not nearly up to it, but I could show how it’s done, and he did do beautiful shoulder in and travers and working on pirouettes in hand, so it was a great clinic. Sadly, it’s over for 2012. But thank goodness we’ve got a break because 2013 is PACKED OUT! Have a look at my coming events page you’ll see what I mean! Not one single weekend free now! WOW! What wonderful support you have given me. And, we’re looking for a home in the USA. I’ve got my upgraded visa application in, and hopefully we’re “ready to go”. Thanks everyone for an amazing clinic year!
Monday Nov 12, 2012 –
Going from SC to Lovettesville VA Clinic
US Rider just paid for itself – after only a few weeks! Our trailer door jammed this morning…with the keys inside. We’re loaded ready to go to the Lovettseville VA clinic, horses on ready to go…and can’t get into the living quarters part of the trailer! Rang US rider…first question: are you OK? are the horses OK? they knew EXACTLY what to do…because we’re on the highway we didn’t even have a real address where someone could meet us. So, they figured out where we’d be in a few hours, what locksmith was closest to us, and then THEY PAID FOR OUR MISTAKE! If you are trailering your horse – you MUST get US Rider!!! I have heard so many nightmare stories that US Rider have solved! Broken down trucks, trailers with busted tires, they’ll fix just about everything AAA does…but they LOOK AFTER THE HORSE TOO!
Sat Nov 10, 2012 – Equine Extravaganza
What a day – what excitement. A full circle moment. After years of being sick, unable to walk and laying in bed all day, all I’d do is watch Star Trek. Last year I had the honor of meeting William Shatner, and finally a full circle moment to meet Mrs. Elizabeth Shatner at Equine ExtravaganzaI was on my way out, after riding my demo, and I was so excited as she was about to do her demo, and as Saint was black – and had white bandages, she asked me if I wouldn’t mind to come back in and have him in her demo as well! Best day of my life!
Friday Nov 9, 2012 – Equine Extravaganza
Equine Extravaganza This really was a lifetime achievement for me. For so many years sick, injured and in the wheelchair, I had NO IDEA that I would ever ride again, loose nearly 70lbs now and go from a Size 20 to an almost Size 6! Let alone own a beautiful horse like Saint! Here’s my first photo at the event…nervous as heck with my groom Brittany holding him outside…well….you know where —- right at sunrise in the freezing cole before going to show him the arena (and the scary roller door – his nemesis) hours before the huge crowds arrived. And, how was he with the door? He was perfect…A Saint….
22 October, 2012 – Tennessee
Saint’s first “photo shoot” by professional photographer Megan Reseigh of “Moving Pictures“. If you’re in the Tennessee area, then get her out. These beautiful photos were taken in the outdoor at Priscilla Robert’s beautiful Signal Mountain property.
29 September, 2012 – North American Police Championships, Maryland
BIG ACHIEVEMENT TODAY! My first ride! When Saint arrived in Colorado he seemed a bit nervous (or was it me LOL?), and I wasn’t real confident after all these years in hospital, wheelchair, recovery, so it was a bit “back to the drawing board” for me and loads of work on the ground each and every day. And, it’s worth it. The ground work REALLY paid off! Here’s a picture of me doing my balance exercises, first thing in the morning (you can see the sunrise behind me) at the National Police Championships in Maryland. There was lots going on, lots of commotion, and he was just a Saint. What an amazing horse!
28 September, 2012 – NAPEC, Maryland
Saint really is AMAZING. There’s people everywhere, excited competitors here at the National Police Championships in Maryland. They’ve got the most INCREDIBLE obstacles, and my friends Lisa Rakes and Dave Johnson are here from Lexington KY Mounted Unit. They’re teaching the other mounted units about obstacles and how to handle them. Meanwhile, in all this excitement, I go back to the stable, and where is Saint? SNORING! Not just laid out flat, but SNORING! He was so asleep that I got worried, he wouldn’t get up, I was worried about colic. After the photo, he got up, spat out balls of shavings shook his head and straight to the feed bin…so this seems to be normal for him. Other horses were screaming and fussing, and where is he…just like his Mum – favorite place in the world: in bed!
9 September, 2012
Well, it’s here…the fantastic Parelli Summit. Three days of the most amazing fun you can have with a horse! And..of course for me it’s the first time performing in public in YEARS. After illness and injury I’M BACK! Linda Parelli let me ride her incredible Grand Prix horse “Zen”. What a horse! What an honor to ride in front of such an AMAZING crowd. And, the release of our 2nd DVD at the same time. I can’t thank Linda enough for dragging me out of retirement…and soon it will be on my own horse Saint…fun times ahead!!!
21 August, 2012, Pagosa Springs, CO
Well…he’s here! He’s arrived in Colorado. My wonderful Ohio friends brought him down all that very long way. He arrived very sound, very solid, and totally 100% healthy. He’s had a vet check already because we need to travel, and they said TRULY on the vet check “beautiful”. How cool’s that. EXCEPT….I’m in London, UK, so I wasn’t even in Colorado for his arrival, which is sad, but he’s well looked after by Linda and her wonderful team. I can’t wait to get back and see him and see how he’s going, and settling in.
17 August, 2012, Denver
We’ll we have it…our new truck and trailer. Oh how I’ve waited for this moment. With so long being sick and not able to work, I never dreamed of this moment! But…we didn’t make it hardly 20 mins down the road before “bang” …thump thump thump. Yes, ran over a nail and down went not one but TWO tires! Can you believe that at the same time I was on the phone to the dealer just checking again what we had to do with paperwork for the CO state-stuff, and when I told him we’d just done a tire…he said “I’ll be there in a second”. And, before my hubbie Nick had a chance to fix it, the guy was there with a new tire for us! NOW THAT’S SERIVCE! But…what an “exciting” day. It’s AUGUST it’s SUMMER…we sure diidn’t quite make it ‘home’ to Pagosa Springs that night and spent a few hours in the truck stop at the base of Wolf Creek Pass. There was a terrible ice and snow storm, but the Hart trailer and Dodge Ram 3500 sailed through it like a sports car on a freeway…like a breeze! That pass, even in the middle of winter, snowed like CRAZY on the way over here, so we knew not to be stupid, and we waited the fes hours until daylight at the truck stop on the eastern side before making the drive over. We knew coming down the pass could be dangerous at the best of times, and waiting those few hours…GREAT decision!
31 July, 2012, Melbourne Australia
Mmm…I think I might have just said YES! At my age I’m probably nuts, but “this is it”. With the loss of so many members of my family, including my mother and only sibling, Shauna Kelly, I realise life is too short. You HAVE to go and get your goals, and I have to do it RIGHT NOW…before I’m too old. Every day I hurt a bit more, every day I’m a bit stiffer, so it’s now or never. So, we’re buying Saint! Goodness knows what’s gotten into me, but it’s going to be an amazing road ahead!
30 May, 2012, Ohio
Just arrived back from Australia to Ohio. Nick has been staying with great friends in Ohio, and I went to meet him just before the Columbus Tour Stop this coming weekend. Mmm…There are SO MANY horses up there that are just wonderful! I haven’t ever seen a place with so many BROKE horses ready to go, anything from little ponies to these two great big huge horses they have. One is called “Saint”, and he really caught my eye in the stable. I just loved his back, and his HUGE feet. He’s a Percheron x Morgan, and jet black (well he would be if I owned him LOL) I can’t really say at this stage if we can afford him, either the money (what with truck, trailer, horse, saddle…bla bla bla) but also the time commitment, not to mention I’m as old as the hills. So, he’s on my wish list….let’s see what the universe brings!
5 May, 2012 – California
Brilliant tour stop in CA. Great crowds, great fun…but there’s something missing…I NEED A HORSE! And, I have a bit of a whisper that there’s one coming! I know it’s a HUGE commitment to take a horse to every single tour stop…thousands of miles around the USA, but…well…here’s a hint… Keep an eye out for news!
28 April, 2012 – Minnesota Horse Fair
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_6QYZCj2RrE&feature=youtu.be Another fantastic show – this time the Minnesota Horse Fair. Great demos by Linda Parelli, and big crowds. Can’t wait to teach the Mounted Unit this Monday!