Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Sunday Showing Recap

One of the times she actually stood quietly in reining.
 On September 7th, this past Sunday, I loaded up Suzie into the trailer for the Western portion of the weekend show. Initially, I was a bit wary of how it would go, considering the trainer did warn me that since Suzie used to be a gymkhana/rodeo horse, she may go a bit ballistic at the show thinking she was at a barrel race. Fair enough, I haven't really taken her to a show before, and our last "show" in July was a complete disaster since I didn't have enough time to run the show and school her before our classes.

That badonkadonk <3
We showed up literally five minutes before my Halter class was supposed to start. Thankfully they were running late so I was able to check in and get our number and get Suzie ready. Unfortunately, Suzie must get ulcery when we trailer out because she had watery/mushy poop for the rest of the day. I'm already on the net looking for some probiotics I can stuff her full of before/after clinics and haul outs to avoid future tummy upset for her.

Showmanship Champs!
I barely had any time to school her for Halter or otherwise and we ran into the arena. There were two other Registered mares in the class and we won First place. We were called back for the Grand/Reserve Champion class and were in with two other horses and much to my surprise, were named Grand Champions! Go Suzie! So far the show was off to a good start, and our luck continued into our next class which was Showmanship. The Judge told me my pivot was beautiful (yay!) and I placed first out of three. Wahoo, Old Mare!

First Trail class ever.
Our riding classes is where Suz became a bit more tense, although she warmed up beautifully! However, I now know what her warm-up schedule needs to be, as I went a bit "light" on the warm up and she needs more time to be spent on suppling and softening. Our first riding class was Trail and although we did all the maneuvers correctly with no refusals, she was very rushy and bracey against me. She felt very, very hot and had a difficult time standing still to prepare for our next maneuver. Annnnnd in my great greeness to Western riding, I rode two-handed because I had read in the Show Program you could ride two handed (apparently it was only for walk/jog riders and the "Green Reining" category). So, we were disqualified. Darn. But, Suz and I and only one other pair were able to negotiate the gate like a boss, so there's that.

Beginner reiners.
One, Two, Three... BRACE.
 The last three classes I did were all reining patterns - modified and all "beginner" patterns, so I was able to ride two handed. Suz was really good standing at the rail all day - I could leave her just standing there with the other horses and walk away if I really wanted to. However, her mushy poop continued and she was very speedy in her first pattern. She also would NOT stand still for the halt before the pattern, or after the pattern. Odd. We got a placing in the class, but I honestly don't remember what it was. The second pattern was alright, she picked up her wrong lead because as soon as I asked she counter-bent and popped the wrong leg. We did not place in that class and I opted to go school her in the outdoor arena since she was being a bit strong. She went around the outdoor like a quiet Western pony and I had no problems having her stop and stand, which was a bit odd.

Being ridiculously cute.
Our last class was the best of the day by far, but I completely made up a pattern in my head and went off course. It was a bit of a laughable moment, and I just shrugged it off. Suz did pretty well for being at her first "real" horse show and although she looked like a giraffe in a few of the photos, she was by no means unsafe or too much to handle. She did everything I asked and it can only get better from here, which is a wonderful thing to work towards!

As a side note, I REALLY need a dark show bridle to match my saddle. Yeesh.

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