Beth Shirley and Star!

After 10 years of not riding due to some life events out of my control, my brother and a dear friend pushed me to reignite my life long love affair with horses. I began a search on a very low budget for a horse that I cold train, and eventually maybe show again. Searching Craigslist one evening I came across a picture of this darling 8 year old Morab, halter broken only and I couldn’t get her off my mind. I called the owner, 100 miles away in Athens Tx and we talked about her and she invited me to come meet her and herself. That weekend in the November mist, my friend, Lynn Baker and I drove to Athens.  Star was really cute, but a bit of a brat and about 150lbs over weight! However, Kay Moore and I hit it off and she decided I was the right home for Star! Kay owned both her sire, a palomino world champion Morgan and her dam, a registered Egyptian Arab. Kay had battled some health issues and never got Star trained to that point. We loaded up Star and headed home.

Over the next few months, we put Star on a diet, I did a lot of ground work with her and then found a nice young trainer to ride her for 30 days before I tried her here at home. Star proved to be very opinionated about almost everything and the pendulum swung in extremes from likes to dislikes. I laughed at her and the little temper tantrums she put on but then we worked thru them one by one.

Then a friend mentioned Cowboy Dressage to me! It changed my life and Star’s life! Now we had something to work towards! I showed Star in her first CD schooling show in March of 2016. We had decent scores and great encouraging remarks so I immediately came home and set up our own court and began to study the principals and ideas behind Cowboy Dressage. Having previously been an intermediate level instructor in American Riding Instructor’s Association, I decided to go after my Clinician Level One in Cowboy Dressage. Star and I worked very hard and in the summer of 2017 rode 4 qualifying tests with scores from 74 to 77. Star has taken me on a wonderful journey with new friends from all over the world and opportunities tat I never imagined.

Star is soon to be 15 yrs old and sadly retired now. Being a grey horse has its downfalls, and melanoma is the biggest. Star has a head and throat full of tumors and now just gets to be queen of the barn while I work with my two new horses in further pursuit of Cowboy Dressage! I will be forever thankful to her for all the doors she opened for me.

Beth Shirley
Cowboy Dressage Clinician one
Joshua, TX