Friday, 3 October 2014

The Last Show of the Season, Days 2 & 3

As horse show days go, it's been quiet. Thursday was especially boring, since I managed to somehow turn off my alarm upon waking up and miss almost every class my barn's horses were entered in.  I was very sad about this, because one of my joys in life involves setting jumps and assisting with Trainer's warm-ups.  But I did make it only just in time to watch the barn's young horse get 2nd in the 1.35m.  The horse, an 8 year old gelding just imported over the summer, is one of my favorites. He is super sweet and cuddly with total bedroom eyes and always looks like he's smiling.

I took Riley out for a flat later in the day, and expected a fairly quiet and backed off horse again, but instead he was a wild mustang.  I ended up schooling him for a solid hour and working hard to supple him. He has a seriously annoying tendency to fall out and bulge his left shoulder through right turns, and always wants to tip his jaw to the right.  So we did a lot of lateral work at w/t/c, counter canter, etc.  He was not really too tired by the end, but at least he wasn't spooking every other stride.  The rest of the day was very meh, I didn't feel too well after that and just decided to call it a night.

Today, I woke up at a decent (if painful) hour and hoofed it out early to watch my friends in the 1.20m.  One of my friends just moved up, and she had a good go.  Then we wandered around for a little while and I parked it by the other jumper ring, since there were two 1.15m horses I wanted to see go.  After consulting the weather, and listening to the show cancel the afternoon classes in deference to the thunderstorms rolling in, I decided I had better just flat now so as not to get caught in a downpour later.  This turned out to be quite smart.  I flatted in the Big Jumper warm-up ring, which was pretty fun, lots of international flavor Big Name Riders out there schooling as well. Mostly I tried to stay out of the way. Flatting with the Big Kids is way easier than trying to survive the Tiny Jumper warm-up or the hunter warm-up, jeez.  The Big Kids all know the actual rules of the ring and aren't trying to run you over all the time.  It was much more pleasant.  Since I didn't cause any collisions or anything I'm giving myself permission to do this in future, perhaps Trainer gives me some cred too, not sure.

Whilst flatting I noticed the wind pick up and looked up to see the sun swiftly disappearing behind some very black clouds.  At that point I decided I had better canter and finish up.  Riley felt really super today, still slightly dragging with his front end but a lot better, and wayyyyy more balanced toward the end.  Once we finished I took off toward the other jumper ring to try and catch my 1.15m horses, but about three steps down the path there, the rain started to sprinkle.  The sprinkle quickly turned to the big, fat drops that you just KNOW are preceding a deluge so we sprinted back to the barn instead.  

Due to the rain, the rest of the show was more or less canceled, including the regional Medal finals I was really looking forward to watching.  My friend and I went to dinner, but it's still a ridiculously early night in a hotel room, and it's boring.  I came here to watch horses, damn it!

On to showing tomorrow - maybe, anyway. It's meant to rain all day and we're supposed to show on grass.... if the footing sucks, we won't show, so I'm hoping it dries up.


  1. awww i hope it dries for your classes!! slick grass is NO fun :( glad Riley came back to life for schooling tho, even if it was to be obnoxiously bulge-y and spooky. and nice job riding around with the BNRs!!!! i would be wayyyy too nervous to do that. it must have felt pretty cool tho!

  2. Eek hope he show was able to go on. Agree with Emma, hats off to you riding wig the big guns. I'd be so intimidated I'd make a right nuisance of myself