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Galloway, who started me correctly,” she remembers. For the last six years, she has worked with Pat Baker- Hutter, supplementing those lessons with clinics when and where she can.

Holly says there are two keys to riding sensitively and correctly with the limited use of her left arm. First, she says, is finding the right horse. “Both Lily and Ballerina are very forward and very accepting of a different ‘feel’ in the rein aids,” she explains. “I try to use my reins very lightly to avoid any problems. Instead of the rein, I try to use mostly seat and leg. I know that’s what I should do any- way. I’m lucky – I’ve had really good training and lots of longe lessons!” Holly points out that she can’t depend too much on her rein aids even if she wanted to, adding “and that’s not such a bad thing!”

“So Much Support”

In 2007, Holly had the opportunity to meet Debbie McDonald at a Region 5 Junior/Young Rider Clinic. Star struck, she asked for a photo and an autograph. Debbie agreed to both, but also offered her email address and training help if and when it was needed. Whenever possible, Holly makes the trip to Epona, Debbie’s barn in California, and also tries to arrange coaching sessions at shows both are attending. Every trip and clinic, she says, is a wonderful experience.

As she looks ahead to the coming two years, Holly is focused on her Paralympic opportunity. She is also hoping to participate in the Young Riders program again. As part of those efforts, she and her family have created a web site where fans can track her accomplishments (www.holly- bergay.com). They can also offer financial sup- port, and are encouraged to do so by both Debbie and by Steffen Peters. Both famed riders have written letters of support that are included on the site.

“I have a lot of people helping me,” Holly notes. “I feel so grateful for all the support that I’ve been offered. It makes me proud to be a part of a dressage community that is so generous.”

WT

Upper right - Holly’s first pony Ambition at their first dressage show.

Right - Holly and Lily in Del Mar; job well done!

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