I did a little walk/trot/canter with him, establishing that yes, I do want you to go forward and I'm not afraid to bridge my reins and smack you when the situation calls for it. Scottie can be a bit of a bully and tries to get out of work, but if you're fair and no-nonsense, he gives in and fun to ride. You just have to work through the bullshit.
|Victory head shake|
I picked up the canter and sent him across the diagonal, right to left, which is apparently his harder direction. Right as I was starting to ask for the change, and bridging my reins to go to my crop, he let out a huge buck. Definitely the biggest buck I've ridden in years; really sad I didn't get it on video. He landed crow hopping and I tried to sit up and and drive him forward. He did change his lead and I kept him cantering on for a few strides until he calmed down then walked. Trainer and A were laughing and telling me that both hind legs were up so high they couldn't see my head. I said I was done and A could get back on. Trainer told me that I needed to school the left to right and then I could be done.
I walked for a minute till my heart rate was normal then tried the left to right. A's famous last words were that this way was easier and that it should be a lot smoother. I was holding more with my hands, which Scottie did not appreciate (he's a less is more type of horse in terms of contact) and our first attempt was met with another, smaller, buck and no change. Second attempt trainer told me to let go of his face and gallop him up to it. He swapped behind a stride or two before the front, but it was smooth without too much fanfare, until trainer and A started cheering at the end. That was met with some lovely head shaking and neck flailing.
While not the ride I was expecting, it was funny looking back at it. I'm glad I was able to ride him through it and not let my nerves get to me after the first buck. And I'm happy that I could school him so that he's easier for A and she feels more comfortable asking for the changes.