Chouette Player and mom Betsy practicing their dressage.
July 4, 2006
Yes, Player is for sale. He's been doing really well with Gail. He spends quite a bit of time outside and is loving the jumping. He's still quite a handful but would make someone a super event horse - the variety would suit him to a T. I would love to have you update the web site and I think what you've written is perfect. Gail recently had a video made of him which I haven't seen yet. I'll get a copy and send it to you.
Thank you so much for thinking of me and Player. He's such a great guy and deserves a good home. He's had a number of people look at him recently but hasn't met a perfect fit yet.
UPDATE: Chouette Player has a new career as an event horse. We hope his new owner will keep us updated!
Chouette Player's mom is busy growing her chocolate business (Serendipity Chocolates) and she is about to open her first retail chocolate store in Oakland, California. Betsy cannot dedicate the time necessary to ride and train "Player". Chouette Players is a very talented horse who has been doing dressage only and he is getting bored. He loves trail riding and jumping and he should be an event horse. He was one of Elizabeth's favorite horses. He is not for a timid rider. He is big and bold and fun to ride - a true athlete.
Please send Betsy an e-mail if you are interested in more information. Chouette Player is currently living at The Dressage Arena, Riverside Equestrian Center,
in Petaluma, California. Gail McGuffey offers the finest in dressage prospects and finished sport horses for sale. Give Gail a call at 707 766-8574 or contact her via e-mail or contact Chouette Player's owner Betsy Schoettlin by e-mail . Be sure to check out Betsy's chocolates at the Serendipity Chocolates Web site: www.SerendipityChocolates.com
Chouette is doing beautifully up in No. CA. I've been riding him
and week and Yves has been riding him the other 3-4 days.
I had planned to bring him home on the 15th but, with all the new plans (editor's
note: Serendipity Chocolate is expanding), I have decided to leave
him in training until I return to "Low-Cal".
I'm actually pretty jazzed about getting to keep him up there that
long. By the time he comes home he's going to be quite the little
performance horse! He's become the favorite pet at the barn and
has a stall right in the very center of activity in the training
Sorry to be so tardy on the updates!
July 25, 2005 - Chouette Player goes to Boot Camp!
Yves Sauvignon training Chouette Player
- July 2005
First off - tell Jordie CONGRATULATIONS! I'm
so happy he's got a new horse (Honor and Valor) to love!
It's been a tumultuous few weeks since I
last sent an update. Lots has happened.
"Mr. P" arrived safely in Santa
Rosa on July 15th. He's such a chow hound he's a dream to load.
I used Bob Hubbard again and they brought one of their "small" air
ride trucks up to pick him up to take him to the "big" trailer
in LA for the trip. My job was to lead him in and Cliff, the driver,
was supposed to be the "pusher". Ha! Player knows that
trailers equal food and dragged me into the stall and began munching
immediately. After a short layover at Golden Gate Fields (I figured
a little reminder of how good he's got it now wouldn't hurt any)
he made the short hop to Oakridge Training Stables where Yves Sauvignon
It's a beautiful facility - about 125 acres
with about 70 horses. They have three huge 25 acre turnouts for
the horses. So far, Player (or Chouette as they call him ,since
they're all French) has been a very good boy in the gelding group
and enjoys the occasional group romp around the field.
Yves Sauvignon training Chouette Player
- July 2005
Yves is very impressed with his brain and
work ethic. The other day he was riding him and the geldings (about
10 of them) all came bucking and charging along the edge of the
turnout field that is at the end of the outdoor arena he was in.
I was standing and talking to Yves while he was on "Chouette" and
the only reaction the geldings got was that Player turned and looked
at them and, I swear he did, winked at them.
I enjoy watching him being ridden so much that I kept forgetting to take pictures.
I did get a couple which I attached. I'm heading back up there on Wednesday
morning, so I should be able to get a few more. His first week there was all
about stretching and familiarization.
I'm taking some seat-improvement/torture lessons
on a school horse, as well. Boy am I sore!
Looks like you guys have been busy bees!
The website looks great. So many yummy horses. Speaking of yummy,
look for a few bags of prototype horse cookies to arrive in the
next week or so.
Talk to you soon,
July 8, 2005
Player (or "Playboy" as Warren calls him) is doing great.
He survived the
4th of July with the sound of fireworks from three surrounding cities just
Chouette Player and mom Betsy practicing their dressage. - July 2005
My old trainer, Yves Sauvignon, is coming out on Sunday to give
me a lesson and to ride Player a little himself. Then "Mr. P" will
be heading up to Santa Rosa for a month on Monday or Tuesday to stay
with Yves. I'm so excited I could just split. I've gotten him going
very nicely with the basics of dressage but am looking forward to
having Yves firm everything up and give it a little more polish.
While he's up there, Yves will ride him three days a week and I'll
take three lessons a week on him.
Chouette Player and mom Betsy practicing
their dressage. - July 2005
I could really use the polish myself, too. Yves has a great facility
with indoor and outdoor arenas and a really nice little cross-country
course and galloping track on-site. Player and I will be in great
hands. Yves is very firm, calm and gentle and the horses just love
him. It will be fun, too, to see all my old "horsie" friends
and to ride with them.
June 29, 2005
Chouette Player and Betsy trail riding
in Palos Verdes, California. June 29, 2005 . "Aren't the trails
amazing. I nearly fell off of him the first time we got to the
top of that hill. We're really lucky to have these trails in such
a densely populated area." - Betsy
Well, it turns out that Warren isn't the
best horse photographer out there, I'm afraid. We went on a nice
hike/ride and we managed to get one picture with most of me and
Player and the view in it, and then back to the dressage arena
where most of the pictures were missing a chunk of my head or were
blurry. We did manage to get a nice one of us cooling down afterwards.
I'll try to get my sister out to take better ones, but the catch
is that I'm her primary babysitter!
Isn't that a gorgeous view? I love going up
there just for that reason. We saw a peahen and her babies on the
way out and a peacock on the way back. Player is still a tiny bit
leery of them, but just watches them closely as we go by. He's
gotten over his fear of large, white, boulders and passes by them
quite bravely now. I used to just laugh at how we could go by tree-trimmers,
wood-chippers, all manner of gardeners (I think that this area
must have more gardeners per square mile than anywhere else in
the U.S.), dogs, paper blowing in the wind, you name it, but was
seriously concerned about those large Palos Verdes stone boulders.
Talk to you later,
June 15, 2005
Dear Elizabeth and Barry
It's been one month now and Player has really
settled into his new home. Every day I wake up and begin counting
the minutes until I can go out and see him. I can't thank you enough
for helping me find this wonderful creature. The whole experience
has such a dreamlike quality in retrospect. The trip out to Georgia,
meeting and riding Player, was such fun. I can't say enough about
how valuable the opportunity to ride and observe him over several
Buying a new horse is such an investment,
not just financially but emotionally as well. I left feeling confident
that I knew the horse I was buying - he hadn't been lunged or ridden
before I got there to "get the kinks out". I was the
one that took him out of the stall in the mornings and tacked him
up to ride. I was able to watch him as he was handled by others
and I handled him, repeatedly, myself and was able to get a feel
for what he was all about. Your hospitality, warmth, and honesty
(and Barry's fabulous cooking - what a bonus!) made the experience
an absolute delight.
Player is developing into an incredible horse.
Better, even, than I had imagined. He loves to work and is a delight
on the trails. He's smart and talented and gets many the admiring
look when we're working in the arena. He has such a big presence
and really sparkles under saddle. You wouldn't believe the number
of people that ask me "what kind of warmblood is he?"!
With his big frame and great attitude, they can't believe he's
a Thoroughbred off-the-track (and a money maker, no less!). They're
amazed when I tell them you have a whole barn full of TB's with
the same talent and willing temperament.
We're hoping to go to our first dressage show
later this summer. He's almost ready now but, after nine years
of not having a horse, I'm still getting back up to speed.
I should have some pictures to send you soon.
May 23, 2005
Player's an angel as always, he's really settling
in to the work and we're starting to get some consistency. I think
my muscles are developing and my riding is coming along as well.
I'm having trouble managing my time right now though - I can't
seem to get out of the barn in under 4 hours, what with all the
grooming and grazing, etc. I think the best I can hope for is 3
hours but that won't be for quite a while.
May 13, 2005
I had another really super ride today - he
has such a wonderful mind and attitude. I could only ride
for about 40 minutes because he was so dang good! He's so
good that I've started schooling some of the training level tests,
just to see how it goes and it goes pretty well, I'll tell you. It
was really hard to stop but my goal is to always stop after he
maintains a consistent peak in performance in both directions and
before it degrades. Every time I ride I ask a little more
of him and every time he gives it. That boy sure does like
He's feeling pretty good - got some nice,
frisky bucks out on the lunge line at the canter. I got a
new gel pad and I think he likes it. I don't really care
for the extra bulk and heat but until his back has muscled out,
it seems to be just the ticket to keep him comfy.
May 7, 2005
Here are a few pix of Player's first day -
turns out Warren did get there in time to get him coming off the
van (I was pretty oblivious). The last one is of him snoozing
in the stall at the end of the day.
Former Bits & Bytes Farm Thoroughbred
horse for sale - Chouette Player arriving in Palos Verdes, California.
- May 7, 2005
Today went beautifully - he had a 1/2 hour
grooming, then an hour turn-out followed by a lunging session in
the round pen after which he got to walk around for 45 minutes,
sightseeing, and then a bath (would you believe we have hot
water in the wash racks!?). Another 45 minute walk
with grazing this time and then back to the stall. He'll
get another two hours turnout this afternoon.
He's been quite the good boy. I don't
know if he remembers me and our previous understanding of pecking
order, or what, but he is being pretty respectful. He really
listens to me when I tell him "no". We spend quite a bit
of time walking around, which may be helping. He walks along like
a puppy dog, most of the time, with the occasional moment of head
high in the air moment. Anything he needs to "look" at only
takes a pause of a moment or two before he's bored with
it. He seemed to be feeling very good and had plenty of energy
in the lunge ring. What an incredible mover that boy is! I
had to keep an eye on myself because I could have lunged him
all day just to watch him in action.
ps - he's so funny in the wash racks - he
loves to play with the water!
Visit the original Horse for Sale photos of Chouette Player.