Sunday, June 30, 2013

We Came We Saw...

and we totally conquered!!
The kids helping me get ready for stadium
There are so many ups and downs with horses. It is easy to get hung up on the lows but that is why it is important to celebrate the highs and this weekend was a definite high for Loki and me.
The kids were monkeys on the trailer and Loki was Mr. Stoic
Let's start with a 30.4 in dressage!!! Okay the judge was generous to the extreme but I still couldn't have been more pleased. Loki was so much more relaxed than he has ever been. I think it helped that I stuck to my plan. We got to the show and the first thing I did was put his bridle on and took him for a walk, working on getting him to listen to me, stay at my shoulder, etc. We followed that with a quick lunge session with side reins. Again, not about being crazy or letting off steam so much as getting him to listen to me even with all the distraction. He was really good.

So anyways, back to the show. The 30.4 put us in 4th place. First place had a score of 18 something and second had a score of 19 something, sheesh! I didn't even know my score going into jumping, though so there was no pressure. Loki got 7s and 8s on all of his trot work and an 8 on his free walk. He got 5s on his canter work. We really, really need to work on the canter. But still, couldn't have been more pleased.

One thing I didn't mention before was this show happened to be located at the same place where we had brake failure earlier. So I was super nervous, and that is probably an understatement. But I tried to keep our warm-up as similar to what we do at home as possible. He was certainly more "up" than he would have been at home but we managed to contain ourselves. :) Honestly as soon as we finished our first canter in warm-up with no braking issues I considered the entire day a success, so talk about no pressure for the actual showing!

Jumping was also amazing. We still have plenty of work to do but it was by far the best round we've had. (Not that we've had many.) No rushing to the fences for the most part and only one fence where we got a bad spot. But, we kept all the fences up! I'm not sure what our final placing was b/c we had to rush out of there but I'm hoping my trainer knows and has a ribbon for me when I get back to the barn tomorrow. I know we got at least 4th place which is amazing in and of itself!

Overall a really great experience. Jay was able to get pictures of our jump round (thanks Babe!!). There are some things that I want to fix (of course!) but when I look at these pictures compared to older pictures of me I am so excited. I can honestly see a huge improvement in my form. I just hope that I can continue to improve!

Oh, and just one more quick note. These fences were so tiny!! As soon as we get our canter fixed we will definitely be moving up to Novice. It's so hard to believe how far I've come. I remember getting so nervous at this height just two years ago and now it's almost boring! I don't want to move up until the canter is squared away, though, and I don't know how long that will take. I need to come up with a game plan.  Anyways, here are the pictures:
Pretty pleased with both of our forms here.
I love this picture. I just wish Loki's head hadn't got cut off but I am so pleased with my form.
Sorry for the butt shot! But, I had to include it b/c I'm so happy with where I am in the saddle. :)
This was the last fence. A little too forward here and my reins were even longer than when we started but still happy!

19 comments:

  1. Love the pics with the kids!! Loki looks right at home with them!!

    Yay for a great outting!! Congrats girl!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you! Loki was GREAT with the kids. I really couldn't have been more proud of him in any way!

      Delete
  2. Woohooooooo, you guys look _great!_ Well done. :)

    ReplyDelete
  3. So happy to hear your show was a success all around -- and the pictures prove that you two definitely had an awesome day! You both look fabulous!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks so much! I'm still basking in the euphoria, lol!

      Delete
  4. You both look great!!!!! Congrats!! I love those kid friendly, stoic horses!! Shows that they have a great personality outside of the show ring. :)
    Www.Sittinginthesaddle.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you! Loki has always been pretty tolerant of the kids. He's so big so it is definitely a good thing!

      Delete
  5. Woohoo, what a wonderful report!
    Love the photos & I am delighted to her that it all went to plan :)
    Onwards and upwards now!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you!! We had such a great time!!

      Delete
  6. Great job! You look so strong in all the jumping shots :)

    ReplyDelete
  7. Congrats on a successful show! :0)

    ReplyDelete
  8. Okay, I have a confession to make- I was cautiously optimistic when I saw his old video with him hopping around the stadium like a rabbit- BUT OMG, LOOK AT HIM NOW! Look how different he is when he is actually USING himself and rounding up over the fences! WHAT A CUTE PONY!!! I AM SO HAPPY FOR YOU! And you look fabulous, too!!

    I'm so glad you stuck to your plan, and I would bet that all of the time you've been spending on ground work had something to do with it too! I'm sure that partnership is translating into the saddle, where he's feeling much more relaxed with you and starting to learn to use himself properly!

    And isn't it funny how when we get the right horse we can just move up? I was terrified of jumping 2' two years, now I've done my first novice and even those fences looked tiny!! :) Can't wait to see you guys keep progressing!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. THANKS!

      Yes, I do think the ground work has made a world of difference for both of us. It gives me a chance to settle my own nerves as well as getting us both working together.

      Having the right horse definitely makes all the difference in the world. I might still worry about our brakes occasionally but so far I've had zero worry about whether or not we'll make it over a fence. Now that he has figured out that part of his job he locks right on and takes me to the fence every time. It is such a great feeling!

      Delete
    2. Definitely, I love that feeling :) I'm glad your nerves are settling and you guys are starting to be a team!

      (And I should clarify, when I said 'cautiously optimistic...' I only meant about how long it would take for him to loosen up and settle in- I figured he'd do that eventually, but he looks like he's starting to do just that! Again, you look fabulous!)

      Delete