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Miles in Bootcamp

Miles in Bootcamp

The second half of 2015 hasn’t exactly been what I’d hoped in terms of horse shows or even riding in general with Miles. In fact, I’ve jumped one time since our last horse show, where Miles bucked me off over a crossrail. Actually, now that I think about it, the last two times I’ve jumped my own horse I’ve fallen off, which is… not awesome. Sufficed to say, I’ve had a lot of setbacks and as a consequence, I’ve done a lot of soul-searching. While I’ve been doing that, and working on gaining confidence with the best little OTTB mare I’ve ever known, Miles has been in bootcamp.

Miles Thoroughbred Gelding

I’m extremely lucky to have an experienced, knowledgeable Trainer, as well as a very talented and ambitious best friend. Together, the three of us have been working toward regaining the Miles I know and love. You know, the amateur-friendly gelding who can take a joke. Despite some more time off here and there for various reasons, I’ve been quite successful in gaining Miles’s respect and re-installing the “go” button on the flat. +1 for Team Tracy! However, I have to admit that the prospect of falling off again doesn’t excite me, so I’ve decided to leave the heavy lifting to more experience and qualified people. Read: Trainer and my BFF/working student.

Ever since the end of September, Miles has been in jumping bootcamp, with my BFF (N) in the irons. In total, they’ve probably taken about four lessons due to scheduling and such, and I have to admit that at first, it was ugly. Miles tried to pull the same crap on N that he does with me. He’d jump the jump, land and start crow-hopping/bucking. But N is much stickier than I am, and put a stop to that pretty quickly. And each lesson since, Miles has improved.

He’s not perfect, and he still has some naughty moments (like yesterday when he played in the middle of a line), but all in all I think bootcamp is working. The plan is for Miles to remain in bootcamp until further notice, so that he has time to process the training and remember his job. Everyone (myself included) is very positive about the Return of the Original Miles, and I’m happy as long as he continues to improve. We’ve come a long way already and I’m going to keep working hard to get us back to where we need to be.

Miles in Bootcamp
Bootcamp is hard. And exhausting, according to Miles.


Fly On Over is an equestrian lifestyle blog devoted to connecting horse lovers around the world. By providing equestrians with practical tips and tricks related to horse ownership, discussing training techniques for horse and rider, as well as covering industry news.

15 thoughts on “Miles in Bootcamp

  1. Copper is going back to boot camp this winter. We can lope in the arena when trainer has been loping him regularly, but take some time off and put us in an open field at home at a lope and things are more vertical than forward.

  2. Miles looks GREAT in the videos – and what a confidence boost for you to know that all his ‘bugs’ are getting worked out! Sometimes they just need a little tough love. It’s great that you have a support team that you can lean on for this kind of stuff!

  3. When I first started riding my OTTB, Marley, after she had a stifle muscle injury she was naughty as hell! But as she started to work consistently and figured out her injury didn’t hurt anymore she became much better! Hopefully that’s all that is going on with Miles and he’s realizing he doesn’t hurt anymore 🙂 Glad you have friends and a great trainer to help out!!!! There’s nothing better to know your horse will be back to his awesome self again!!!

  4. oh Miles…. sounds like you and the dream team are on the right track and that he’s well on his way to remembering not only how to *do* his job, but that it’s also pretty fun. good luck!

  5. Sounds like you and your team are all in a great place for Miles! Fingers crossed he continues to improve and you two will be back to rocking/rolling soon 🙂

  6. So fortunate you’ve got the right people to work with, and a great mare to ride in the meantime! Hopefully you and Miles will be back at it before you know it.

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