December Action Rider of the Month – Mari Secrist

 Mari jumping Remy at Novice Level - stadium jumping in his EasyCare Glue-ons.
Mari jumping Remy at Novice Level stadium jumping in his EasyCare Easyboot Glue-ons.

Mari Secrist is a seasoned eventer who had ridden successfully at the Advanced Level. In the world of eventing, the Advanced Level is the highest level and the jumps on the cross country course are 3’11”and in the stadium jumping phase can be 4’1.” Solid fences at almost four feet on a cross country course takes a well-schooled, talented horse and a gutsy rider.

Mari explained, “The photo is of my adorable off the track thoroughbred, Don’t Cross Granny, alias Remy.  Remy’s sire, Valley Crossing, was a stakes winner of $1.6 million! Remy raced till he was 6, and won $26,000, oh well…

“Remy and I are eventing at the Novice Level in that photo, and getting ready for the move to Training Level. He had pretty crummy feet before I bought him. I was having a tough time keeping shoes on his formerly split, cracking and shelly feet. All my horses are barefoot, so the first thing I did upon purchasing him was to pull his shoes.

“His feet look lovely now – no more cracks and splits. But he doesn’t have the thickest sole, due to wearing shoes from an early age until the age of seven, so I usually ride him in EasyCare Epics for the first few days after a trim. I always compete him in EasyCare Glue-ons. Boots that come above the coronet are still not allowed in the dressage phase of eventing.

“It amazes me that no one even notices he’s wearing them! Anyway, he moves quite confidently across gravel or whatever the footing might be, and almost always comes away with a ribbon. How could he not? He’s so CUTE!

“Remy is a delightful character, always happy to see me, and a pleasure to work with at all times. I feel pretty lucky to have him.”

Mari is still eventing at age 65. What an inspiration!