BY: THE PLAID HORSE
When Caitlyn Connors stepped into the Dixon Oval at the 2018 Devon Horse Show aboard her own Express Blue GP Du Bois Madame for the $3750 junior jumper division, she never imagined the possibility of walking back under the famed Devon arches with a second place ribbon pinned to her horses bridle… and not for the reasons you may be thinking.
Connors, a Devon, PA local, acquired the grey gelding affectionately known as “Blue” in 2016 as a 6 year old whose only experience included a handful of outings in the .65 meter jumpers. “I traded a bunch of horses for him that were stoppers, because that’s what we could get… and when we got him he was insane; I literally could not stop this horse. We had to get him super unfit to calm him down a bit, he’s still super green and has never been ridden by a professional; but he’s really an angel… I adore him.”
It was Connors Twitter post after the pair’s red ribbon finish at Devon that caught many people’s attention; as Blue continues to be a reliable mount, regardless of the fact that he is half blind and has a heart murmur. “After he came in, my vet took a look at him and noticed that he had these blue clouds over both of his eyes. She told me ‘yeah….that isn’t normal’, and I just laughed because that was why I had called her, I didn’t think so either. We had an eye specialist out and he found that he only has about 50% vision in one eye and 30% in the other.” Blue also has a heart murmur that has been monitored by vets and found to be okay. “We had already bought him at that point, so there was nothing we could do… but it definitely would have been nice to know!”