Article as seen in the:
“The Prescott Dog” Horsing Around Column
By Allie Werhan
Eileen Davis, a championship equestrian driver, is on a Quest for the World’s Singles Driving Championship with her special horse, Pinegrove’s Sailor Boy. Combined Driving is one of the least known of equestrian competitions, and includes a 10 – 18 km cross-country endurance course, a dressage event in an arena with special surfaces for the turning carriages and a cones obstacle course that puts all the driver’s skills to the test. These events are held in different places in the world, with the next one yet to be announced.
Eileen Davis trains her own horses at her Prescott area, Davis Ranch Combined Driving Center. Her great joy is the satisfaction of getting a horse to the championship level. Not all horses are cut out for this sport. They must enjoy being by themselves, must bond with her and trust her implicitly, and be good at all three areas of combined driving, obstacle course, marathon and dressage. There is no physical contact with the horse while driving which makes it even more important that the horse trust the person and the person trust the horse.
This sport needs more promotion and education among all horse lovers.
Pictures are from a June competition in California. The connection with the 1300 pound horse is obvious, with driver and horse “becoming one” as they perform for the judges. To find out more, visit the Davis Ranch Combined Driving website at www.horsecde.com.