So its baffling to me why I kept asking B to take the short this last weekend when he was in his groove and jumping well with the long.
Backing up though, the weekend was nothing short of wonderful. I know it seems silly to celebrate getting on and off the trailer, but I do, EVERYTIME. He also was superb about chilling in the trailer for about an hour and a half while we waited out the rain and storms.
Getting ahead of myself again.
I ended up timing our arrival much better than last show; we chilled for only 2 hours instead of almost 7, HA. I almost didn't even go because the forecast was nasty and I was worried about getting caught in another tornado--this time with no shelter. The plan was to load up, arrive and enter only one class, then wait it out with B on the trailer--that way if I got stormed out I wouldn't lose much money and he would already be loaded.
It DID storm, but only briefly and eventually I unloaded B no worse for the wear and we tacked up and warmed up without issue. It drizzled a little, but it wasn't show ending.
Luckily, best friend L came along and she was a wonderful "show mom", taking pics, holding stuff and helping me at the end too.
Sadly, the storm did scare off most people and there were so few entries in the jumper classes that the organizer called us over and asked what we wanted to do. The jumpers classes were paybacks, and I could tell that she was worried over losing a ton of money if we ran it like the show bill stated. She asked if we would be OK to waive the show fees (um, hell yes) and make up our own courses (literally yes plz) and take best 2/3 (YES).
|Me forever looking like a giant even on a 17.2 hand horse...ridiculous|
It was literally the most fun I've ever had a show EVER.
I entered the warm-up class, so they let me do that at the 2'3 height. I would draw the course for you all, but we changed it every round and in the warm up I just practiced bending lines and hopped him over the scary brick wall/lattice oxer.
I digress again.
The organizers jacked a few of the fences up for this one (the oxers and the outside line) and the object was be the fastest. B likes this game and has morphed into one adjustable creature. I LOVE that he can turn n' burn, as well as gallop or collect up--so. much. fun.
|Exuberant flying change|
|I dunno if he cleared it|
Round two they moved the oxers up even more, as well as the outside line again and one of the bending lines. Again, he was a beast over this and we also won that round. We had a slight miscommunication over the blue and red panels, making for a giant OH SHIT leap (see pic above), where I again thought the short was the better option and B was like "mum, no we take long".
Round three finally raised the other bending line, leaving only one line of 2'6 fences, with the rest ranging from 2'9-3'6. I loved the variety, and this course was a bit tougher and more windy. At this point too it was our 4th round and I admittedly was getting tired and my back was starting to cramp. The first 2 fences were vertical bending lines and I popped over the first horribly, landing too far forward, setting us up for a terrible takeoff to the second. For some weird reason I thought it would be best to get super duper close and take the short versus his preferred long and we tapped it. Sorry bud. Makes sense, considering I was literally riding like shit and abandoned all knowledge of how my horse works best. Luckily, I stayed extra focused the rest of the round and it ended on a good note, even with one rail.
|Another excellent flying change|
However, that did bring to light a good point--we need to work on adjustability to fences. The long won't always be available and as the fences get bigger we both need to be comfortable with the short and long, as well as communicate effectively which one we are taking. This is something I want to practice more at home, since it is a fundamental part of show jumping. For the most part I've sat back and let him figure his feet out without messing with him to much. Now that he's growing up a bit, I think its time to really buckle down and practice some harder things. So many exercises I can think of, hehehe.
|FAV < 3|
|Horse show mom L being amazing post show|
Also, it was really nice to get so many compliments on my boy. One girl even came up to me and asked what breed he was because he looked too beefy to be a TB. That made me proud because I have killed myself trying to find the right balance for him so he could get some bulk. I also got several compliments on my pad, and I love that my hard DIY work is noticed. It just makes me happy, because I love that pad too!
4 rounds, 1 rail, no refusals, 1 blue ribbon= happy girl