Jan. 24, 2021

Nenah Mikuska - Three Day Eventing

Nenah Mikuska - Three Day Eventing

Nenah bought her Appaloosa "Jasper" two years ago, and they are training for 3 day eventing.  I talk to Nenah about that and about being a new first time Appaloosa owner and ApHC member.

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Transcript
Tony Bottoms:

How you doing. Welcome to the only podcast that talks about the Appaloosa horse and the people that love them, wherever that might be. I'm your host Tony bottoms. This is episode number 50 today. We're going to talk to Nenah Mikuska about three day of eventing, but before we do that I wanted to talk about last week show about the ApHC small horse program. That was the most listened to episode that we have ever done. And I do believe that it was mostly because of all the POA people that were listening. So I put out a message on Facebook saying, what does this mean? POS need their own. Segment of the show or do POS need their own podcasts. And I got responses on both of those questions. They didn't get one way or the other. So what we're going to do for now is we're going to go ahead and we're going to add in a POA segment to the show. If I get enough support from the POS. Then we will make dos their very own podcast, but first I gotta find out if we can get enough support, I am going to talk to the board to see if they are willing to help out. And now I'm going to approach other people about helping out. And if you are listening and you are a POA member and you want to throw your support. Then you can always go to buy me a coffee slash Appaloosa and buy me a virtual coffee. And then you can put in the notes that you're a POA person. So that's how we'll figure out if we've got enough support. And the reason I say that is it does cost money to produce the show. I mean, we had to pay for the hosting and all that kind of stuff. So. POA peeps to me, POA peeps, or should be pony peeps. I don't know. Honey, peep sounds kind of dirty. Let's keep these G-rated POA peeps. If you want your own show, then show your support or encourage your board to show support either way it works. And also let me know what y'all want to hear about. Do you want me to do it like Appaloosa and do an interview where I go out and talk to. POA members or what, and if so, who do I need to talk to? You know, what are we going to talk about? All that kind of stuff. Hit me up. Let me know, give me a little help in hand here. Let me kind of point me in the right direction and we'll go from there. All right, let's go ahead and get into Appaloosa news. so this week in Appaloosa news, we now have a new president for the bod. The new president of the board is Deb dire. And then Sean, Sean Bree is vice president. And to round out the rest of the executive committee chair, finance is Leslie Fox. Fogg chair of rules is Ray Chet. Chair of marketing is Kristen rider and chair of planning and review is Lori Wunderlich. So we have a new president, a new vice president and a whole new executive committee. It looks like, I think. It looks like pretty much everybody swap seats or change hands or whatever. It all got mixed up. So it's all new now. And then as far as nationals, but they still haven't made a decision on that. Their next meeting is January 28th. My understanding is they're supposed to talk about nationals. And youth world on January 28th and try to get things ironed out as best as they can. And hopefully we'll have some news on what's happening with national debt. And in also the Appaloosas Cyrus fraternity program is coming back, but it has a new name. It is called the absolute sires program. Now. And they've teamed up with the Appaloosa pleasure horse association to kind of revamp this Cyrus program. We'll be talking more about that at a later date. They are also supposed to get together later on this week and have a meeting to kind of iron everything out. The auction for the stallions is going on right now. So make sure you go check that out. If you're interested in bidding on a stallion debris too, that's going on right now? And then over on the POA side of things, the POA has announced that it national Congress there'll be some new NSPA approved color Bri classes. It will be open to registered over height or solid POS APH CS, AP H a I B H a a, B R a P T H a and P HBA. There'll be over 18 classes and these will include halter lunch line youth non-pro and open classes. And there'll be more details coming later. And that's all I have for the news right now, eighth, you know, of something that's coming up or that's going on that you'd like to include an Appaloosa news, or if you'd like to include over on the DOA side of news, then let me know and I'll make sure I include it here in the show. So let's head on over and talk to Nina. Hey Nina, how you doing? I'm doing well. How are you doing? I'm doing well. So you just recently purchased a Appaloosa gilding. Why don't you go ahead and tell us about that.

Nenah Mikuska:

So I, I actually, we're coming up on our. Two year anniversary. I bought him two years ago when he was four. His name is Jasper. His full name is lapsed Jasper, and he's registered under the Appaloosa horse club and he sired by wet Busan. So he is, he's definitely the most expressive and interesting horse that I've ever had the pleasure to know. And really when I bought him, I really don't think I knew what I was getting into because. I was expecting to get a horse that had been started under saddle, potentially started over fences, you know, walk, trot, canter down and everything like that. Um, but when I bought Jasper, I bought him from my friend and he had about 30 rides on him. So we were starting completely at the beginning and we really just have had to build our way up from there, especially because it's been mostly me riding him these past two years, not really consistently with a trainer just due to life. And the fact that I haven't always had the money to pay for both board and training. So it's, it's been kind of crazy, but. The thing about him is that he is always so willing, but he's always got to say something about it. I've noticed that he. He really has an opinion about everything. Um, which I think is hilarious. And that's, that's the thing that I've noticed about having an Appaloosa is that really, he Jasper will say what's on his mind one way or another, and you just gotta be paying attention. Otherwise it could, it could catch you in the face. Right?

Tony Bottoms:

I didn't ask you to introduce yourself. So once you an introduce yourself,

Nenah Mikuska:

Hello, my name is Mina. MACU SCA. I'm an amateur rider in Colorado and I am training my six year old Apple is the gelding to hopefully one day go three-day event thing.

Tony Bottoms:

Okay. So in case the listener doesn't know, explain what three-day event is.

Nenah Mikuska:

So three-day event, it's a series of essentially combined massage. Show jumping, which they call stadium jumping and cross country all into one competition. And typically it'll stretch over a weekend. So three days or sometimes two days, three day venting is kind of an older name for it. But essentially what you'll do is you'll do a dressage test as the first day. And then you'll go on and do cross country. Which is the kind of what everyone lives for when you're venting is the you go out and you Gallop and go over solid fences and you have to be within a certain time. And it takes a lot of concentration and a lot of focus on your part, but also a lot of communication with your horse, because you're going full speed through the course, which can go on for several miles and. The jumps themselves are solid. So you really have to time yourself and pilot your horse well and, and make sure that he also is confident in what he's doing to be able to make it over those fences, because they're not going to come down the same way a regular jump with standards would. And then you would go on to the stadium jumping and sometimes stadium jumping and cross country. Um, our switch. So sometimes cross country is the last event. Sometimes the stadium jumping is. And that's going to be a lot closer to your typical show jumping, where, you know, you want to be within a certain time. You want to have a clean ride, no rails down, and you want to make sure that you're, you're just getting through the course as smoothly and cleanly as possible, but also the fastest, there will typically be a jump off if there's a tie between a couple of people and so on and so forth. So three of venting really kind of combined. The dressage aspect and endurance aspect when you go into the cross-country, but then also the jumping. So it really is the triathlon for. Equestrian sports. I like to think a lot of cross training, a lot, a lot of different things to do,

Tony Bottoms:

right. So I was going to ask her each one of these is a separate event on a own. It's a separate discipline on its own. So do you have a background in any of these other disciplines?

Nenah Mikuska:

So I started off as a Hunter jumper when I was in high school is really when I started taking lessons consistently. And so I do have a jumping background and then I really started doing more dressage. When I went to college, I was very, very fortunate. When I moved to college, I went to California and found a wonderful trainer who was willing to let me muck out stalls in exchange for riding lessons and as a broke college kid. That was a blessing.

So I was there at 6:

00 AM, three times a week, nothing else stalls. And then if she had time, she would throw me on one of her horses or let me cool down one of the horses and teach me what, what she knew. And she was a dressage and jumping instructor, but mainly from a dressage perspective. So she was really the one that introduced me to it. So that's really kind of where I got my start. And then I've done schooling, cross country. Um, haven't competed in it yet, but have school that a few times did a little bit of show jumping. So it's a little bit of a learning process for me too. I'm, I'm kind of learning as I go, but that kind of makes it exciting as well. But background in it is, is, are jumping show jumping and. I call myself still a beginner when it comes to dressage. Absolutely. Yeah.

Tony Bottoms:

We have a friend of ours that she's been doing it for many years and she still was like, ah, I don't know if I get this, but like I said, she'd been in it for many, many years, but yeah,

Nenah Mikuska:

well today I had a, I had a dressage lesson today and. My trainer goes, Oh, you look so great. Like you did wonderful. That looked awesome. And I was like, really? It didn't feel awesome. I felt like I was all over the place. She's like, no, you look great. And I was like, I don't know how that happened. Thank you for saying so didn't feel that way.

Tony Bottoms:

So you're basically bringing him up Jasper basically from the beginning through all of this. Right. So he has, he has no background in any of it. He's just kind of learning it altogether.

Nenah Mikuska:

No, I, I really got him when he was very fresh and new under saddle, and I've been taking them up as I go. And a lot of it's just been me. I kind of liken it to the blind, leading the blind, but so far we haven't crashed, so that's good.

Tony Bottoms:

So is this your first Appaloosa that you've had?

Nenah Mikuska:

He's my first horse. First horse.

Tony Bottoms:

First Wars that you own. Okay. Yeah. Yeah. So what led you? Well, I guess what led your aid to buy it? An Appaloosa in B does decide to take such a big chunk, such a big bite and jumping into something that as soon as you will, I'm trying to think of how to say you. It's such a big jump into going into three-day day. Any Oh gosh.

Nenah Mikuska:

I graduated from college in 2018. And I worked as a working student or about three months over the summer and then moved back home. And I knew that I really wanted to get a horse. I was going to be able to afford it because I had just gotten hired at my company that I still work for. And I was, you know, this is, this had been my dream since I was fixed, right. Like to own my own horse and to compete my own horse and, and just have them. That was mine. So I was. Fresh out of college and started looking around. And I looked at a couple of horses that were within my price range, which was very small and hadn't really clicked with any of them. And like I said earlier, I was thinking, okay, I'm going to get a horse. That's probably started over. Fences has walk, trot, canter down that way. You know, I'm, we can kind of meet in the middle. I can really perfect Microsoft and we can do the jumping together. It'll be great. But then I got a call from my friend, Jen. And Jen had bought Jasper when he was about 18 months old and bought him from his breeder joy car. And just through the years of, of owning him, you know, he had just turned four. He was going to be turning five in the spring. Just kind of realized that. She didn't really quite have the time for him and that he wasn't going to be big enough for her either because she's very tall. I'm five, two. And why would it became obvious that he wasn't really going to quite fit? She was looking for, she started looking for a new home for him. And so she calls me what felt like out of the blue. And she said, Hey, you know, I, I have to sell Jasper. I, I don't think like, I'm the person for him. I think he needs, you know, he needs someone else. I need a horse that's bigger. And, you know, would you be interested in buying him? Because honestly, I can't think of anyone else that I would really want to own him. And I was like, Oh, well, I mean, I I've hardly, I've known him. I'd known him since about, she had brought him home probably when he was closer to two. And I was like, okay, well, I, I really don't know him all that well, but I would love to come out and hang out with him and just kind of see what he's like. So what I ended up doing, she had a round pen at her place. And so I came over one day with my mom and put Jasper in the round pen. And I swear, we just kind of looked at each other for a little bit kind of, kind of Heartland. He like just kind of looked at each other and we're like, what, what are you thinking? Like, how do you feel about this and how do I feel about this? And it just seemed like we were. Kind of in that moment, like, okay, I think we can make this work. He was definitely sizing me up as much as I was sizing him up. And then we just did a little bit of Brown pen work, did a little bit of join up a little bit of walk, trot, canter, and really just kind of felt like, okay, like this, this feels like this is something that could work. You know, even though he was very, very green, it was one of those things where it was like, you know what I'm, I don't know if I'm going to have this chance again. And I don't know. I know that if I walk away from this, I'm going to regret it. That was the big thing I think was like, if I, if I walk away from this horse, I'm, I'm going to regret it for the rest of my life, because I can, I can already tell that he's something special, which sounds very, you know, of course, girly of me, but it really is true. I think, I think we just kind of. Looked at each other and really met for the first time, even though I'd been working with, you know, I've known Jen for so long, we just kind of knew that this was something that could work. Like if he wanted to try. And I wanted to try, we wanted to give it a shot, right?

Tony Bottoms:

You've read a little bit of money robber. Sarah heard the join up, so,

Nenah Mikuska:

and he does great Liberty work too. Actually, when, whenever I have time, it's hard to fit it in because I'm at a boarding barn. So I'm rarely in the arena by myself. He actually does a little bit of Liberty work, um, and really likes it. So whenever I can put him in the arena by ourselves and not have anyone else around, I, I try to. Turn them loose and work a little bit on his Liberty work. So, yeah. And you know, I had been wanting to go into three-day eventing for a while. I had had a couple of different trainers just throughout the years who, you know, let me school cross country. And, and really, it just seems like I really want to do this. Um, this seems like the ultimate ultimate thrill, and I loved that. It combined a lot of cross-training so that the horse has to be really well-rounded. And I just, I went for it. I said, you know what, let's do it. And I also knew that his tire wet lose it and had done a little bit of cross-country as well. And I also liked the fact that he was a blank slate and I could really do whatever I wanted with them. So I said, you know what? Heck, let's see if you like the cross country. Let's see if I like the cross country. Let's see if he likes the dressage and the jumping. And we'll go from there. You know, if he. No dumps my butt halfway through a competition and says, I'm done. Then we'll find something else to do. But for now let's, let's take it and look to see

Tony Bottoms:

how he likes it. Yeah. I'm actually somewhat familiar with the Whoppers and that's actually a name that I actually recognize. So you're new as an, a PAC member, obviously at being an APHB member to get the transfer papers on your horse. Is there anything that within the showing that you're considering doing other than the three-day event,

Nenah Mikuska:

do you mean in relation to the Apple is a horse club just showing you in

Tony Bottoms:

general? Yeah. As far as the Apple is a horse club, is there anything to interest you within the showing? So, I mean, obviously you can get points on a day cap, but that's something in their shoe, but I didn't know if. Maybe there was something that you were considered, you know, if you're doing Joe jumping, you know, something like Hunter, her saddle or something just to participate in the shows and kind of something different today, you know what I'm

Nenah Mikuska:

saying? Yeah. Yeah, definitely. And, and, you know, to be perfectly honest, I haven't really thought too much about it out here where I live. We have a lot of thoroughbreds. We have a lot of warmbloods. We have a lot of quarter horses. You don't really see a lot of Appaloosas and just given my. Circles that I've been in the dressage world and the jumping world. Really. I haven't had much of an introduction to the Appaloosa world as a whole. That's definitely something I want to do. And that was going to be my intention this past year, before everything got shut down. So, you know, Moving forward. That is definitely something I want to look into, but I, I, we haven't had much of a chance to do so, because out here I am, you just, you don't run into many Appaloosa's, you don't run into Minneapolis, do English either. And just within my own circles, it's been a lot of the, the thoroughbreds and the warmbloods and that's what I grew up riding. And that's what everyone else has. And so. I always make the joke that I'm going to pull up to the horse park and unload my little, well, he's not little mic, a few spot Appaloosa with the blue eye and go line them up next to all of the big warm bloods that look the same. And. I try to do it, your Sosh test with them. So it'll be interesting, but definitely I think as hopefully as things kind of start to open back up again and we have the ability to relate to, to travel and to show more, that's something I want to get into. Yeah. I'm

Tony Bottoms:

trying to think of who it is that I know out that way in Colorado. I think it might be Julie Hill is out that way. I believe. Yeah. So that might be somebody you might want to look up on Facebook. I'm sure that people contact you listening to the podcast, you know, I'm sure you get hit up after that and then you'll have some people in the area. Yeah. I didn't know how much you knew about the HPHC and what your ideas were or so I just, I just of want to fill it out and kinda see where you're going. You know, three-day of Vinny there's really. Nothing within our show program that really equates to that. I mean, I was thinking, I was trying to think of something as a crossover to help you train for it. And the only thing that I can think of off the top of my head would be obviously hunting on her saddle or if they ever get a working Hunter program going, because I don't, we don't have, I don't think we do dressage. I mean, we do. I know it's in the list, but I don't think they've done. There's no one doing it. I don't think we do Western dressage. There used to be jumpers, but no, one's really doing jumpers anymore. So they quit offering it at like at world and stuff like that. So, yeah, that is definitely kind of a unique spot, but. And I know that there are certain levels of cross country too, you know, I know there's, you know, you don't necessarily have to go over the big jumps BOMA, tell you what jumps look intimidating, you know, just staying on the ground, looking at them sometimes. And then. Okay. And in watching the, uh, the blooper reels, you see that as a lot of the blooper reels, people doing cross country and mixing, he knows here comes a rider over the fence and the horse is still on the other side.

Nenah Mikuska:

I changed my mind. Thanks though. We'll see. I mean, I've, I've been saying no, I'm not, I'm not going to try to aim very high. Like I'll, I'll get the training level and call it good. But. Really Jasper has made me so much braver as a writer that I say that now, but who knows, you know, if he can do the height and we keep going for it, we, I just might have the guts to do it. So that'll be great. And, and think about kind of just my philosophy with, with horses is that anything you can do with them makes them a better horse. And so if I'm able to expand our training and to do different things with them, I would love to take him out and. You know, take them on a cattle drive or something like that. And, and really just get him out there to see more things. So even though I, I want to compete in a venting, I would love to have him experience all sorts of things. So in the future, if I do have the ability to branch out and do a little bit more. No under the Apple is a horse club or different showing opportunities. That's definitely something I'm going to do because, you know, I think it's so good for them. And it's also fun, you know, the more you do more, you can experience and you never

Tony Bottoms:

get bored. Right, right. Yeah. You're definitely out there where they have a lot of open shows. So you probably have the opportunity for that. Uh, well, thank you. Ma'am I appreciate it. Hopefully, people listen to this might be able to reach out and out there in Colorado and say, Hey, and then I will come to the HPHC and

Nenah Mikuska:

I would love to get involved more. I, I really, truly would.

Tony Bottoms:

And maybe they can point in the area of some chose or at least something to go watch or something like that, you know, kind of get an idea.

Nenah Mikuska:

Definitely. That would be, that would be awesome. I would love to meet more people and also just really celebrate this breed because, you know, I, I really knew nothing about Appaloosa's before I bought him. And honestly, he is my best friend and I don't. I don't really think I could go back to many other breeds because he's just so funny and quirky and smart that I just, I love it. I'm addicted his personality and he's just the best. So definitely would love to do more, to celebrate his breed and, and do more with him because I think that would just be, that would be

Tony Bottoms:

awesome. Yeah. Yeah. They definitely seem to have character to them for sure.

Nenah Mikuska:

Today. I told my trainer how yes, uh, Jasper is very opinionated and she goes, well, it takes one to know one. And I said, you know exactly, exactly.

Tony Bottoms:

Oh, well, y'all have a good one. Thank you. And talk to you later. All right, have a good one.

Nenah Mikuska:

Bye. Bye