“Proper preparation is the first step towards superior performance.” In 2021, VA Blizzard of Ozz, one of Global Endurance Training Center’s (GETC) endurance horses in Moab, Utah, proved that saying to be true again. What an amazing year he had.
After winning the AERC National BC Award in 2019, he brought that prestigious National Award home again in 2021. Last year he earned 11 Best Conditions during 50 and 100-mile endurance events. Additionally, he won the National 100-Mile Award, one of the most challenging National Awards to win. This award counts the total points earned by a rider on the same horse in 100-mile rides throughout all of the AERC regions. Ozzy, as we call him at GETC, is following GE Pistol Annie, who also won this award with me in 2016.
Racing with Ozzy this past year has been nothing but amazing. Our second place finish at Tevis was a true test of his strength and conditioning. He was fully engaged mentally, and he moved consistently forward until the finish line. His incredible drive and energy throughout the race was very uplifting. Ozzy displays an authentic passion for the sport.
With every passing year, Ozzy is getting better as his confidence continues to increase. He certainly enjoys eating up mile after mile. When the trail is getting too technical and I want to give him a break, I get off and tail or lead him. Teamwork is the key to our success. I am not getting any younger, but I am thankful that I can still get off and run with him on foot. I am now competing in the Bill Stuckey Award category (high mileage rider 65 and older), and as luck would have it, I am bringing this National Award home, as well. This makes a total of three National Awards in 2021.
What contributes to Ozzy’s success? Certainly, it’s hard to argue with DNA. A good breeding is the foundation for any success. Thereafter comes training, conditioning, proper preparation, goal setting, and mind set. But that is by far not everything. Nothing comes from nothing.
A large contributor to Ozzy’s success has been the EasyCare products he has worn. Over the last several years, EasyCare’s hoof protection line has not only gotten bigger, but it’s also gotten much better. Every year, the R&D department at EasyCare is bringing new hoof wear onto the market, making it ever easier for average horse owners to select the proper hoof protection for their horses and for their specific equestrian disciplines.
Ozzy has been shod and booted exclusively in EasyCare products in the last few years. The Easyboot Glue-On is one of my all-time favorites. He just moves so effortlessly in them. I use the 1.5 Wide on his front hooves. I also have a soft spot for the EasyShoes, especially the Flex and the newer Versa Grip. Ozzy is very short-backed and has long legs. He is very strong in his haunches and has a tendency to overreach. With the Glue-On boots in front with their beveled toes, he can accelerate his breakover in the front and get them out of the way before he steps under with his haunches. I do prefer the Versa Grip for his hind hooves. The added heel support and the fact that I can set them back just enough to help reduce forging are my main reasons for selecting the EasyShoe Flex and EasyShoe Versa Grip.
Superb products can help achieve top results. At GETC, we are all proud to use EasyCare boots and shoes on our horses. The horses sure seem to prefer the protection and cushioning they provide. The results are living proof of it.
Ozzy is now 12 years old and in his prime. I am looking forward to many more miles with him. I plan on using Easyboots and EasyShoes on him for as long as he is able to be my competition partner. There just aren’t any better hoof protection products on the market as far as I can tell. It’s a no brainer for me to get the best products for the best horses.