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Tales of Taco the Wonder Horse and his ammy rider on their way to a Training Three Day

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Ask Taco Special Edition: Ask Questie

Today's blog post comes from Taco.  He decided to interview Our Questionnaire, a recent Rolex and Jersey Fresh competitor owned by Kathleen McDermott and ridden by Heather Gillette.  Instead of the usual advice column, Taco is the one asking the questions this time.  Enjoy!

Dear Mr. Questie,

Although we have never met, our humans are friends and I have heard a lot of good things about you.  I understand that you are a top-level event horse and possess great intelligence and athleticism.  As part of my ongoing venture into online journalism, I am writing in the hope that you will consent to answer a few questions.  I will put them in my "Ask Taco" column on the Team Taco blog-- it will be a special edition because I will be the one asking the questions this time. 

Best regards,

Questie and his human, Heather, preparing for cross country

Hi Taco. I would be happy to answer your questions.  I met your person at Rolex this year, she was very nice and loves you a whole bunch.  She tells all sorts of stories about you.  You are a lucky guy. 

Where were you born and what kind of horse are you?  I am a New Zealand Tb.  I was born on the North Island of NZ, all the way on the other side of the world from where I live now.

How and when did you get into Eventing?  I started eventing after I stopped racing in NZ.  I wasn't a very good racehorse so my people brought me home and then decided to let me try jumping.  I LOVED it right away!

When and why did you begin your partnership with your current human?
I met my current human when I got off a Fedex plane with my friend Gerry in May 2009.  It was very strange being on a runway with super huge jets at a big airport in Newark NJ, USA... what an amazing place!  I went on a trailer ride to a wonderful place called Pottersville where I now call Merrywind Farm home.  It is horse heaven with big fields and lots of grass!  I met Heather because my people in NZ had an agreement to find me a new person after the Olympics in 2008.  You see I was supposed to represent NZ but got very sick from eating too many dandelions.  It took me a long time to get better, but my people took very good care of me.  I continued to improve and get stronger once I got to the US and with Heather.  Now I am as good as new!  I am a very lucky horse to have always had such good people to look after me.

What do you think about your job?  Do you like it?  If so, what part do you like the best?  What part are you the best at doing? 
I LOVE my job.  I am so fortunate because I get to travel and go lots of places. It is always a big adventure! Sometimes I go with my friends from Merrywind, other times just with Heather.  I like the cross country the best.  I get to run fast and solve lots of puzzles.  You never know what you are going to find out there on xc.  It is so exciting.  I am getting much better at doing dressage, we work very hard on that!

Did you like going to Rolex and Jersey Fresh? What competitions will you do next?  
Rolex was a big adventure!  There was a huge stadium with thousands of people in it all clapping and cheering me on.  But before that all my friends and I hung out with some reining horses in a big arena when a tornado went by.  I didnt even know what a tornado was, but we all ran for shelter!  We don't have those in NZ.  There was so much rain in Kentucky that the xc was very muddy and sticky.  I didnt feel like myself while on course and Heather decided to take me home early.  I was sad to not jump all of the jumps, but just didn't feel like it was safe.    Jersey Fresh was good, though I was a bit rusty on xc.  I did a very lovely dressage test and worked very hard to show off all that I have learned in the past year.  I hadnt done a whole course since March and it took a few minutes to get into the groove.  I will have a little vacation time now and then get back to it.  I think we will go to Millbrook and then out to Richland Park.  I am not sure what we will do in the fall.  Whatever it is I will be happy to run and jump some more.

What do you like to eat, and who are your best friends? 
I really enjoy eating clover, I search all around for it.  Carrots and apples and anything that comes in a crinkley wrapper!  My best friend is Gerry, we traveled all of the way from the other side of the world together.  I have a new friend Groovy that I hang out with too and Dragon comes with us on our travels sometimes too.  My old NZ mom came to visit last year and said she could see I love my new person very much, she could just tell by how I looked at her.

How did you achieve the extremely fashionable dappled look that you are sporting this spring?
I do look like a super model with my dapples, don't I?  Just kidding!  Though the girls at my vet's office call me Brad Pitt... whoever that is.  I have to wear a special coat because I am allergic to flies. It covers most of me so  I don't get sun bleached at all. That and my person uses a shampoo that has all sorts of good stuff in it.  It makes me super shiny and my skin and coat are perfect.  It has olive oil, honey.. all sorts of natural stuff and nothing that hurts my eyes.  It smells good too, so the girls like it!  It doesn't bother the environment either, which I think is very important.

Questie's dapples

Do you have any advice for horses who would like to become excellent Event Horses?  
My best advice is find a good person who you can trust and form a good partnership with them.  Then work hard to learn all of the skills you need to solve all of the different puzzles you will come across.  You have to do dressage, even if you don't like it.  You aren't allowed to go xc if you dont!  Be brave and be careful.

It has been fun answering your questions!  I hope I get to meet you sometime.  Take care and happy eventing!

I hope you enjoy reading my interview with Questie as much as I enjoyed doing it.  He is a Most Excellent Event Horse.  I will be rooting for him later this season and I hope you will too.  -T

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