Robert Dover
Anyone who follows dressage in the United States has heard of Robert Dover. He went to his first Olympic Games in 1984 and has competed in every Olympics since. When Monarch and I made the USET long list in 1989 we were invited to participate in a clinic with Robert at Gladstone. Robert was very encouraging during my lessons and we remained acquaintances afterwards.

Over the next few years I took Hot Legs, Vergilius, Anmut and Pioneer to Robert when Irma Hotz was out of town. He offered a stark contrast to Irma's style of teaching. As a tremendously experienced competitor, Robert would refine test figures until they were perfect for the show ring. My FEI test performances improved with his insight into what judges expected in international competition.

Robert has studied with several European trainers in the past. The techniques he used to help Hot Legs with one-tempe changes, piaffe and passage reinforced my confidence in training a horse to the FEI levels. I always enjoyed his lessons since they were upbeat and positive. Robert continued his support when we saw each other at shows.

I felt complemented when Robert called one fall and asked if I would come to the farm he was leasing in New Jersey and work with his students while he was in Florida over the winter. Due to a perceived conflict of interest with the farm owner, that never materialized. Since I had operated Bit by Bit Farm for several years Robert later called and asked for my input regarding operating expenses and returns when he was considering purchasing a farm.

I haven't seen Robert since I left Pennsylvania in 1994. He offered wonderful insight into the world of international dressage and always pushed me to realize my competitive goals.