When I was ten and a half years old, I started taking riding lessons at Eaton Canyon Riding Club in Pasadena, California. One of my favorite school horses was a gray mare named Chalk Dust.Chalk Dust was more than thirty years old, but you wouldn't have known it by looking at her.
She was sound. She was strong. She was vital.
She was also the first horse I rode on the trail, the first horse I galloped, the first horse I jumped.
Granted, by the time I met her, she had more "whoa" than "go." Still, she set the standard by which I still measure useful equine longevity.
Teresa Buzzell's Arabian/Paint cross gelding Flicker of Lightning is one horse who is living up to the Chalk Dust Standard.
At just two weeks shy of his twenty ninth birthday, Flick is healthy, strong, vital and a dressage machine.
These pictures show Flick were taken last Saturday during a schooling show at Flying Star Stables in Brighton, Colorado.
Teresa and Flick received a 62% for their First Level, Test Two effort.
They came back twenty minutes later and marked a 64% at First Level, Test Three.
Both these scores were good enough to win their respective classes, easily surpassing horses one third of Flick's age.
Sometimes older really is better!
I expect Teresa and Flick will be trotting down the centerline for years to come!