So this post is all about playing catch up. It’s been awhile since my last post, and we’ve been really busy! We’ve been taking our lessons with my hunter/jumper trainer every week, and I had decided to add some dressage lessons from another trainer in there as well. I want to be the best rider I can be! Having access to trainers from different disciplines is great! I took a dressage lesson with a dressage trainer, in a dressage saddle for the first time in my life! Found out that my pony can move pretty fancy when asked to properly! I also had the dressage trainer ride him a few times to train him a little bit. He’s moving better now that he knows what to do, and I’m learning how to be a better rider having a more solid foundation and established connection than before. So we spent a lot of the late summer doing some dressage stuff in between our jumping lessons. My goal is to be a better Hunter, so I’m just taking what I learned from our dressage lessons and training and applying it to the hunter ring.
In December, there was another Barn Show, and I entered into the pony division. I have to be honest here and let you know that there was only one other pony in my division though! lol So it was Newton and I up against a really great little 8 year old rider and her somewhat still green medium pony who is 6 years old. They make quite a rock star team together! We had 3 jumping classes one of which was an Equitation round. Two flat classes. One Hunter Under Saddle, and one Equitation on the flat for a total of 5 classes. The little girl and I were neck in neck till the last class! She won the hunter O/F classes, and I won the Equitation classes and the Hunter under saddle class. So we did end up Grand Champ, but with only one competitor I really can’t brag… AND the fact that I BARELY placed above the 8 yr old is a bit humbling lol. She does have more show experience in her young years than I have in my whole life, so I’m not going to be too hard on myself. It is was it is, and we squeaked out the win 😉
Our best jumping photo from the show, need to work on my Eq a bit still!
Looking forward to continuing our training and practice, and hopefully get to some more shows! It’s really hard with my schedule, the kids, the businesses, etc… But my passion lives on and I’ve never been happier 🙂
So my own barn does several Schooling Shows a year, and there was one on April 29th, 2017. I’ve only had Newton for a little over a month, but what better place to try our talents than at our own barn, in a low pressure schooling show? So we entered into the intermediate Hunter division. We did 2 flat classes (One Under Saddle and one Equitation) and 3 jumping rounds (2 regular over fences rounds, and one Equitation Over Fences round) Plus we did a red/blue round for practice (Thank god for those practice rounds!) Our division only had 5 or 6 entries, and only one of them had trailered in from a different barn, so I was mostly competing against all my lesson mates lol. (FYI the girl that trailered in was amazing! She had an amazing horse and she was a perfect rider and I’m pretty sure she won every class. She obviously was an “A” Circuit rider, and wondered at first why she even bothered with a schooling show, but turns out that she was coming back from a collar bone break, and this was her first show before going back on the circuit. Sooo…. I forgive her for cleaning up and wiping her perfect little booty with us LOL)
That being said, Newton and I did OK. I definitely need to improve on my Equitation over fences, and didn’t get any good jumping pictures. The few that I DO have I’m too embarrassed to post! haha. On the flat we did well and my Equitation has always been pretty decent on the flat. I was proud to come in 2nd in the division on the flat equitation class, next to Miss Perfect! Seriously, she and her horse were flawless! So, I really couldn’t have asked for a better outcome than that. So our placings in 5 classes were 2nd, two 3rds, a 4th and a 5th. I can’t even remember exactly what classes were which, except my 2nd place, but we made it over all the fences and never went off course, so that was something at least lol. The jumps were pretty low, I think the actual height was prob 18 inches, so my pony didn’t put in much effort getting over them. He actually jumps better when he has to jump at least 2’3′ because then he actually has to try and really does have nice form when he lifts his knees and uses his rear end underneath him. It might not have shown off his or my skills completely but we still have a lot to work on. We did end up Reserve Champ, and I’m still convinced the judge might have made a mistake on that one. But my pony is very cute and of hunter “type” so maybe that’s why she pinned us that when I felt that other people got better placings overall than we did. It was an introduction for us into showing at least, so I could at least get a feel for it. I’ve really only ever done a handful of schooling shows in my youth, with some fun shows and maybe an open show or two thrown in there my whole life. I’ve never even been to a rated show!
So that was our first show… a simple and small schooling show on home turf after only having him a little over a month. In the time that I bought him and the show, I did at least get a better saddle that fit both of us better than what I had before, and was able to get some other tack of my own instead of just borrowing everyone else’s 🙂 One down and hopefully many more to go! At my age and level, and my busy lifestyle with kids, I’ll never get to show as much as I’d like to, but want to get better, and show as much as I’m able to with my lifestyle. I’ve missed my “glory days” and will do what I can, when I can and savor every minute! 🙂