Training/competition livery space available at my training base in Slinfold for June 2014.
Elizabeth Sjoholm-Patience born 27.01.13
Sarah and her husband Miles are delighted to have welcomed baby Elizabeth to the world on 27 January 2013.
With the baby settling in well at home, Sarah is back in the saddle already to get herself and the horses back to competition by the end of the summer.
A Christmas break...
December 2nd saw my last ride of the year - I managed to make it to 7 months pregnant as I had hoped, but having found myself less effective, easily out of balance and uncomfortable, it's time to hang up the spurs until after the birth.
I've arranged a local grand prix rider to come and keep Herbata ticking over, though Herbata seems to have other ideas about the plan! I have hopes that the two of them will find their way together soon. Lots to get on with in the meantime, with Christmas in the air, party season and the New Year coming up. Best wishes for a fabulous Holidays to all!
Desiderata retires from competition to start a new career as a broodmare
International Grand Prix dressage mare Desiderata (stable name Blondie) retires from competition to start a new career as a broodmare.
Owned and trained by Rebecca Whitcombe, 18 year old Desiderata made her International Debut earlier this year with Canadian rider Sarah Sjoholm-Patience at Vidauban CDI3* followed by CDI3*. Desiderata is a German bred Hannoverian by Dimaggio.
Retired due to health issues, Desiderata won the British National Intermediare 1 Freestyle Championship in 2006.
Sarah Sjoholm-Patience will be continuing her focus on the development of Herbata - her 12 year old Hannoverian mare by Harvard currently competing at Small Tour.
A month full of courses and coaching improvements this month, cumulating in the British Dressage National Convention, this year featuring Carl Hester and his medal winning strategies.
While our trip to Hartpury was sabotaged by a poorly dog, so we ended up only making the second day rather than both, it was still great watching Carl work.
I was particularly interested to see how he worked with several riders he had not worked with before (and the different strategies and tones he used with each rider), then with horses from his own yard and finally with the Olympic Champions - Charlotte and Valegro doing some super high quality work. Carl stressed the importance of being flexible and tolerant in viewing other people's training and to remember that tension in a hot horse entering a strange arena is something that takes lots of good work to minimize, and should not always be condemned.
October has been a month of many changes. As my pregnancy progresses, I have made the difficult decision to close down my own training yard, and move the horses to the excellent Lower Barn Stables in Slinfold.
With lovely facilities including a 20m x 60m all weather outdoor and a small indoor (!), individual turnout and excellent care in the hands of a very experienced yard manager, Claire Pearton. Herbata and several of my client's horses have settled in beautifully, and we look forward to a bright future. Training and instruction are still available, either at your yard or "my" new one!
New look for Sarah Sjoholm-Patience Dressage
The site, designed by Brand Nu, is set to help Sarah stand out in the online arena as much as she does in a ridden one.
With a gallery section for latest pictures, monthly top tips and news and blogs, the site will help many more people enjoy feeling part of Team Sarah.
Sarah has also launched a new Facebook page and Twitter profile for social media lovers.
September 2012: Had a fabulous time watching the Grade IV freestyle at the Paralmpics, humbled by how well these riders rode. It was especially fun to watch the Canadian rider, Eleanore Elstone, who I had some lessons from very early on in my dressage career, and who was my Team Coach at the North American young Riders Championships in 1995 (though writing this date has resulted in some wincing on my part!). Eleanore had a lovely and expressive freestyle, but not quite in the same league as the medalists, all of whom looked ready for an International Small Tour start. Met up afterwards with one of my Grade III athletes, Nicky Thompson, another hopeful for Rio. She took one step closer at this year's British National Championships, where she won the Grade III Championship even with some rougher moments with her horse reacting to wind in his ears.
August 2012: Olympics: It's sad to London 2012 all wrapped up, but what a show. The arena at Greenwich was gorgeous, the quality of the combinations and some of the rides truly inspiring. What a year for GB to pull it all out of the bag, great to hear the "dancing horses" recognized by the general public. All fired up and training hard, Rio 2016 or bust!
A very important announcement!
July 2012: It is with great joy and some nerves that Miles and I announce that we are expecting the birth of our first (and likely only) child in early February of next year. At the moment this is having very little impact on daily life, still training hard, still coaching, still enjoying watching my athletes learn and develop. It has meant a slight delay to my International career as by the time Herbata is ready to go I will likely be too heavy, but I look forward to having another run at it in 2013. Exciting times!
Addington CDI April 2012
Addington CDI: (April 5-7, 2012) Starting in the very strong evening Grand Prix class, Desiderata and I managed to hold ourselves together for a clean but rather tense ride after an out of control warm up when Blondie got overexcited by working underneath the stands of applauding spectators.
These big competitions are addictive!
Vidauban CDI February to March 2012
Vidauban CDI: (Feb 29-Mar 4, 2012) Had a fantastic time in the sunshine if southern France competing Desiderata (Blondie) in our first International Grand Prix. Though the first test had several (very) big hiccups, we managed to redeem ourselves in the second with a cleaner test. Find out more about our journey on Blondie's Facebook page. A big thank you to husband Miles Patience and Blondie's owner Becky Whitcombe for their company and help on the trip.