Woodstock a Year at Tuny Page’s Stillpoint Farm in Wellington
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By KENNETH J. BRADDICK
WELLINGTON, Florida, Dec. 14, 2013–When Woodstock arrived at the stables of Arlene”Tuny” Page exactly a year ago the 10-year-old Dutch-bred gelding brought with him more than hopes to make a United States team.
Vincente Guilloteau who trained Woodstock from a five-year-old to Grand Prix credits the relationship with the horse as integral to his recovery from a serious riding accident and has an emotional attachment.
In the year since arriving in Stillpoint Farm in Wellington, Tuny and Woodstock (Havel x Contango) headed back to Europe along with Tuny’s primary Grand Prix horse, Alina, to work with Jürgen Koschel, one of Germany’s top trainers, over the summer and compete at some national shows. Among them a second place finish at Donaueschingen in the Louisdor Cup for develooping Grand Prix horses.
After returning home, the pair posted 74.681 per cent in a national show as a warmup to the Adequan Global Dressage Festival of seven CDIs through the winter.
“We all talk about how it takes a year to build a partnership,” Tuny told dressage-news.com on the first anniversary of the horse’s arrival in Wellington, “and I think on some level a lot of us believe that we can do it faster than that.
“It’s taken all of the year and I’m totally in love with my horse,” she said after a training session with Jürgen Koschel in Wellington for a week along with her regular trainer, Oded Shimoni who is also based in Wellington.
Woodstock was sold to France as a five-year-old. He was trained by Vincent Guilloteau who had a terrible accident riding a young horse and he required multiple surgeries and a lot of recuperation.
“He and his wife, Frederique, credit Woodstock as being an integral part of his return to complete health,” Tuny said. “There’s no question in my mind that this horse knows that he is truly special in a variety of dimensions. It was very hard for both Vincent and Frederique to let go of Woodstock into my hands but they were very brave and it was part of the arrangement that they had with the owner. They still consider themselves fan number one and fan number two!”
Although the horse was capable of performing the Grand Prix, she said, she took the advice of trainers who urged her to wait until Woodstock was stronger and more secure.
The advice paid off with the Louisdor Cup and Wellington national show results.
“This horse is a genuine gift and one that I hope I can do justice to,” she said. “My intention is to continue to connect with him and develop in confidence and security in international competition with an eye toward Normandy, France in 2014 and Rio in 2016.”