Tuesday, October 12, 2010

a full show weekend

This was an all-horse, all the time weekend. On Saturday I was the groom for a friend who was competing. We spent all day at the show, and I nagged her into a couple classes she wasn't going to enter...and she did great! It was great to watch, and I know I should have participated, but wimped out. I think I was a bit intimidated by some of the requirements (which turned out not too matter very much at this mostly schooling show) and worried about not having enough training time on Major. I was more than happy to be there with my friend though, and less stress than with the two of us managing the two horses.

On Sunday I did take Major to the show. He loaded in my friend's trailer after a little convincing (I can't wait till I can practice with him in my new trailer). The horseman's park was packed with trailers! The nice parking guys found us a spot, and we unloaded. Major was a bit nervous, he looked around a bit wide-eyed at all the fuss, but then noticed his hay bag and set to calmly eating. HIs buddy Friday seemed pretty unfazed, he'd been here the day before! We registered, tacked up and walked the horses around. There were horses and people everywhere, but proudly both Major and Friday were curious but not silly.

I probably should have warmed up more, but the warm-up arena was filled with western people really really slowly trotting their horses. Major's trot would look like a tornado compared to that (on a side note: lots of arabs there, and lots of the painfully slow trot. I understand collection, but this wasn't, and i'm sorry western show people, but it doesn't seem like any horse really moves like that...in the field, do they trot like that?!)

We went right down to the the trail trial, which takes place in a wooded area. There were some easier obstacles (backing around a tree and not hitting the outside logs, we did ok) and some we didn't do very well on (get off and lunge your horse to jump over logs, no thank you, I prefer Major to just step over things!). I was proud that we accomplished the water obstacle: pick up a bucket on a string, go down the bank to the stream and fill it halfway, bring the bucket back up and set it on a paper plate, hanging the string back up. Since one of the last things-on-string and water incidents had turned ugly I was glad we'd worked on the sponge months ago and that Major was good. He was a little upset about leaving his trailer friend, but mostly listened.

I knew overall that the trail trail was not our best this time, but was glad I tried it. Our next class was arena trail. There were many patterns, but I chose to do the Novice one: everything looked doable and it was easier to memorize. Memorizing two patterns that day was more than my tired brain could deal with, so just one arena class.

Waiting in the very long line for the class took more than an hour. Major got antsy, so I did take him on a trot around the woods. We just did one circuit, but he willingly left his friend and picked up a trot, hoping for a trail ride I'm sure. I do love that about him, he has lots of enthusiasm for exploring and new trails are no concern.

He was a star in the arena trail class, listened nicely, stepped over logs and over the bridge, trot into the triangle, up the the mailbox, nice back and everything else. It was simple, but precise, and I liked that he was so calm. We had to wait another long time for the results, and while we wanted to leave, we both thought we'd done well.

And we did! I got second place, Friday got fifth place (I think) and two other friends got third and fourth. Major was half asleep at this point, and got into the trailer with much less fuss and was glad to be home. When I let him back into the pasture he trotted out, snaking head and having fun, before stopping for a huge great roll. He deserved it after that long day.

It is nice to know (again, I always am thinking this) that we have come this far. The judge remarked to another friend that she liked how calm our horses were. For Major's first real show, I am so proud of him!

No comments:

Post a Comment