Saturday, June 27, 2015

Worth Every Penny! 

In keeping with CNN’s current  series on the seventies, the star of my seventies was a Morgan gelding called Kanes’ Classic.

We had just sold a young, home-bred mare that I was showing for a lot of money and went looking another show horse.  My husband, Bob, and I were at a Morgan show several states away from our farm in Connecticut.  We sat in the stands during the park classes (I wanted a high-stepping park horse) and looked for something we thought was special.

We knew that most likely the horse we  wanted would not be openly for sale, but we didn’t think that purchasing that special horse would be impossible because, after all, we hadn’t planned on selling our special mare.

The first horse we took a shine to was a golden maned and tailed gelding.  Bob followed the horse and his rider back to their stalls and made an offer.  It was politely refused.  It’s interesting to note that this horse went on to win multiple championships at the top shows.  So I guess we at least had good taste.

The next horse that caught our fancy was Kane’s Classic.  Bob made an offer to the owner and it was accepted. We had a new horse!  And to sweeten the deal, we were able to take “Classy” back to our stalls and show him the remainder of the show.

Kane's Classic winning Ladies Park Harness

Happily we went back to the motel that night, looking forward to getting to know our new horse.

When we got to the barn early the next morning, his stall was empty!  Bob stormed over to Classy’s former owner, demanding he bring the horse back to us.  Money had changed hands and a contract had been signed.

“My wife,” the man explained, “said she would divorce me if I sold Classy.”

Arms folded tightly across his chest, Bob fumed. He turned on his heels and began to walk away before he physically hurt the man.

“But,” the man said to my husband’s retreating back, “I can probably talk her into letting Classy go for another $500.”

My husband wanted no part of such unscrupulous dealings. However I was already picturing many blue ribbons with Classy.  I reasoned with him that we were prepared to pay more anyway, so we could afford the extra $500.  It took a lot of convincing, but to his credit, my husband swallowed his pride and forked over the additional $500.

As we walked away with Classy, the man said that he’d return the $500 once his wife calmed down. Never heard from him. That was forty years ago! 

Classy was worth every penny. We won countless ladies park harness classes and he soon earned the reputation of the horse to beat.

Isn't showing fun?!

This picture of me smiling through the mud, was taken after a major rain storm at an outdoor show.  I’m dressing is a saddlesuit and am sitting in a four-wheel show buggy; the typed used for park harness classes.  This particular class was a “Combination Park” class.  Horses worked a full class in harness then lined up.  Grooms came in, removed the buggy and harness and saddled the horses up.  Then the horses did a full walk, trot, canter saddle class. 

Come back next month and I’ll tell you all about the scariest adventure Classy and I had.  

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