Ray Hunt had a profound impact on my riding. In spite of the fact, I’m keenly interested in dressage and Ray was a Western Ranch sort of fella, Ray helped me enormously. Without Ray, dressage wouldn’t make any sense to me. Ray could say something that would stick in my mind like glue. I’d try to figure it out, which usually took me years. During clinics, Ray would tell riders what to do. “Walk, trot a half circle and come out the other direction…walk.” This barrage of orders could come quickly. Keeping up was a challenge. About the time I’d get my horse to walk, Ray would say, “Trot…” I’d hustle my horse to trot, only to hear Ray say, “…one step.” That baffled and frustrated me. But overtime, even as I struggled to “trot one step,” I discovered how useful it can be. Among many things, learning to trot one step, develops feel in the rider. It also develops responsiveness in the horse, creating a forward attitude that also waits on the rider. That has enormous value in dressage, making many other things easier.
Here’s a short video update on Jemima, who appeared in the previous video (2010). Since I’ve been invited as a student of Ray’s to make a presentation at the Legacy of Legends event (Las Vegas, February 2012), I’ll post this as an intro/preview of what I hope to share about Ray and what he taught me about dressage.