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Ode to Windsor


By Mary Cour Burrows

It’s a thing of rare grace and beauty, when you witness a horse and rider move in perfect unison, when the line between the two becomes blurred, becomes indistinguishable.

That was my takeaway when I first watched Natasja Kraska and Windsor, her Dutch Warmblood, elegantly navigate across the dressage arena. His movements were so soft and fluid, like water rippling through a gentle stream. The communication between the two was ethereal, imperceptible, magical.

The two journeyed together to the U.S. from the Netherlands, and it was here that Natajsa incorporated classical dressage principles to train Windsor to the highest levels of the sport. Together they pushed themselves to new heights and – in November of 2018 – earned a USDF gold medal.

On December 3, Windsor unexpectedly succumbed to a sudden and severe case of colic and passed away. I’m sure that from this day forward, whenever I see Natasja, I’ll think of her great friend, of her steadfast companion, of her supple, perfect partner. I’ll remember their closeness, their history together, their unshakeable bond.

Natasja once told me that, though she was born thousands of miles away, when she was on Windsor’s back, she was home. And she was.

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