On March 16-17, Nashoba Carriage Association held a carriage driving clinic with Joanna Wilburn at Kimberlin Farms in Olive Branch, MS. Joanna is part of the Wilburn family of Rollingwoods Farms, where she and her sisters breed and raise Welsh Ponies for riding, driving, and as they say, “Just plain fun!” Joanna also is navigator for Paul Maye and his German Riding Pony, Markus, at combined driving events across the country. They are the current reigning USEF National Champions for Combined Driving Single Ponies.
Much fun was had by all at the clinic. Joanna tailored her lessons to each individual, but every driver began their lesson by working on bending and suppleness. Nashoba members set up three cones courses: two with 12 sets of cones to replicate a pleasure cones course, and a third course for “Pick Your Own Route,” in which drivers must go through each set of cones but may do it in any order they choose.
Members enjoyed the first weekend of spring weather (which has now suddenly disappeared!) while setting up the courses at Kimberlin Farms.
Ann Kimberlin is well-known for her hay hazard, which she so graciously sets up for Nashoba drivers every spring. Nashoba members love it so much, they decided to have an impromptu party in the midst of the bales, and the last Friday of winter turned into a fun evening for all!
On Saturday night, members and guests gathered at Kimberlin Cafe, as it is affectionately known, to watch a helmet-cam video of Paul, Joanna and Markus on course at a combined driving marathon. Some viewers gripped the edge of their seats as they took a virtual ride on the back step with Paul through seven marathon obstacles. Joanna shared details about good navigation on a marathon and what the responsibilities entail.
This clinic was the perfect way for local drivers to get back into the box seat before Nashoba’s spring season heats up. We have two schooling shows planned this spring, one of which is just around the corner. The 2013 Tom O’Carroll Clinic and Arena Driving Trial will be held the first weekend in April, the 5th through the 7th, at Split Tree Farms in Moscow, TN. Two days of lessons will be followed by an Arena Driving Trial (ADT) on Sunday, April 7.
Tom will judge the dressage phase, in which drivers will drive their test twice in order to get immediate feedback from him and apply it directly. Tom is known for his instruction in using light, educated hands to guide the driving horse. Tom is from Navasota, TX, where he runs his Good Hands Training Center.
Sherri Lower of Williston, FL, will conduct a clinic May 10 and 12, and will judge a schooling Pleasure Show on Saturday, May 11. This clinic and show will be held at Kimberlin Farms in Olive Branch, MS. Sherri is an expert in turnout for the pleasure driving horse, and she will bring her mobile Hats Off Boutique, where driving and fashion enthusiasts can find many treasures and necessities.