Since it has been quite some time since I actually rode in this show… let’s just sum of the day.
This was by far and away my worst dressage test. Not so far as the numbers went but because nothing was going right. New trainer thought Gus looked off in his left hind but we managed to work out of that until we got into the ring where I completely threw him away and rode miserably. This was entirely my fault but I do have an excuse.
You see, as we were marching down the middle, all confident after a wonderful warm-up, the judge stood up as if she expected me to halt. We were riding BN A, there is no halt. Or is there? She suddenly had me wondering if I had memorized the wrong test! So, with basically no preparation, I came to a halt. It was a terrible halt.
And yes, there is no halt in BN A. Or BN B. But honestly, I think the judge forgot! Because I did not get a technical error the halt and, in fact, the comments actually sound like she firmly believe there is a halt in that test.
But either way, it threw me off for the rest of the test and it was mediocre at best.
No surprise, the NQRness that new trainer had seen during dressage warm up (and the test) was amazingly gone when it was time for jumping. GusGus just doesn’t want to prance around in the sandbox. Warm up went really well and we had some nice fences.
I was really excited to get in the arena to actually do our course though I knew there would be some scary to Gus fences. Chatt Hill’s arena is HUGE and beautiful. And not boiling hot because it uses white sand instead of the black footing that Poplar does. Ugh.
But anyway, going in I did my best to trot around all the scary jumps. Sure enough, Gus spooked at the flowers under fence two. Made the mental note to ride that one all the way through. So what did I do? Oh yeah, gave up a half stride out and, sure enough, had a stop.
We got over it and continued on our course. I had a few really pony club up moments. Over or thru. There is no stopping.
So after that, I sent the boy up to add Gus’ XC gear and while I hurridly walked the course. It was so hot and humid, I was ’bout dying three fences in. There were a few things I was worried about, namely the bank and the arc jump. The bank because, while I love them, Gus has never seen one this big and we had a second jump only three strides after it. The arc because it was the same fence we ran out of at the Stephen Bradley clinic.
And of course a storm started rolling in.
I am so thankful to have a trainer to warm me up now. It helped tremendously. The first two fences were beautiful. The third fence was a run out. It was not one I had been worried about. Just a hanging log on top of a box. I guess I just let Gus look a little and didn’t put enough leg on. The rest of the course rode fine though I did let him get a little strong to the arc. He flew up the bank fine, though, and rode past a very spooky group of fences.
While it wasn’t our best ever outing, I think we both learned a lot from this course. Now though we are taking a break while I get through the next two weeks.