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P Idolmania A

s I write this, it’s the end of March and birds are singing, grass is growing, and spring is officially here, at least in some parts of the U.S. But that’s not the only new season—it’s also American Idol season!

Okay, I’ll admit it. I’m addicted—hooked—smitten—with the contest since music is my second passion aſter horses, and maybe I’m even a little envious of the talent that is showcased on America’s number one television show. How can you not admire young, giſted men and women as they sing in front of millions of people, subject themselves to criticism from the judges and then have America vote their fate - all on live television? If you watch enough of American Idol, you learn that there’s something that sets the best apart from the rest in this singing

competition. One can have the most incredible voice and best song selection, but that isn’t enough to win. According to the judges, winning performances must demonstrate both feel and a connection with the audience. In other words, they must express the emotion behind the words of the song and engage the audience with the song’s message. Funny how it’s easy for some contestants who apparently are comfortable and natural in front of the audience, yet there are usually others who struggle to “let go,” come out of their comfort zone, and express themselves fully without tension and nervousness. Te attributes of a fabulous singer/entertainer are not much different than that of a skilled, successful rider. I truly believe that

the greatest, most talented riders and trainers regardless of the discipline have a tremendous amount of feel in (and out of ) the saddle that sets them apart from the rest. Te performance of a feeling rider appears to be effortless without tension, allows the communication and connection of horse and rider to flow in perfect harmony (no pun intended), and is simply beautiful to watch. You probably have your own “equestrian idol” that inspires you like I do, and I would bet my first born Totilas colt that your idol demonstrates these same qualities. (Okay, I’m not a breeder nor am I a gambler, but you get my point.) In this May/June issue we have wonderful stories of people who no doubt have that giſt of feel with their horses. Frankie

Tieriot has been riding her Selle Français since she was thirteen and together they head to Kentucky Rolex to make history since her horse has only one eye! Te story of the dressage horse Wendel is special since it took an exceptional rider, Gigi Nutter, to bring out the best in this not-so-easy Hanoverian. And then there’s the feature on how older Warmblood schoolmasters patiently help their jumper riders learn how to feel relaxation giving them confidence to compete in their sport. I’m also pleased to announce that starting in this issue, different breed organizations will be able to sponsor their own special

editorial section in Warmbloods Today. Te AHHA, American Holsteiner Horse Association, is the first organization to jump at this unique opportunity. I found that their informative articles have given me a new understanding and respect for how the breed has established itself in the sport horse world. And in our next issue, watch for a special section on the Trakehner breed, which is sure to be very interesting. So, who is your equestrian idol? American or foreign; it doesn’t matter. Without inspiration from our idols our riding skills

would remain stale, our sport horses wouldn’t achieve their full potential, and even worse, our horses might not be as happy as they could be. Spring is finally here,so let’s relax, ride, and of course, feel.


Liz Cornell, Publisher

Our Mission: Warmbloods Today is the only magazine in North America focused on the entire spectrum of Warmblood breeds. It’s a place where people from all aspects of the sport horse community can come together: amateurs, owners, trainers and breeders. Each issue contains interesting, informative and often heart-warming stories of peoples’ experiences with their horses, along with thought-provoking opinions from various professionals and amateurs. We cover all horses from European descent bred for the sports of jumping, dressage, eventing and driving including the Iberian breeds and American Warmbloods.

8 May/June 2011

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