Monday, April 30, 2012

Cornerstone Hunter Show

The show went really well.  We got there plenty early and were able to school in the show ring before the show started.  Buddy was motivated and in front of my leg, so we worked on using our space (our arena at home is much smaller than the show ring was!), and having a nice rhythm.  There were two outside lines set up, one a 4 and one a 5, but when we schooled we got 5 and 6.  Both lines felt comfortable (to me) with the extra stride added, so that was our plan for the day.

We had a huge wait between when we schooled to when I actually showed, like 4+hrs.  Buddy got tied to the trailer with hay while Jen and I got breakfast, watched some walk-trot classes, and took naps in the truck.  I did take Bud for a walk and let him graze for a bit. I've shown at this barn before, but its been a few years and I had forgotten how slow their shows always run. 

Once I got back on for my rounds, we warmed up a bit and popped over a couple x-rails.  Our first round was ok, Buddy was actually a little fast and we ended up getting 4 and 5 strides in the lines instead of our plan to add.  There was a long ride to a single diagonal oxer as the last fence that was our downfall.  It rode towards the in gate, and Buddy got long and strung out.  I didn't have my leg on, or my shoulders back and we broke to trot about 3 strides from the fence. Dang it!
So tired!

The second round was much better, had a more even flow, but we still got a weird distance to the single oxer.  Something about that fence was not working for us.  By our third round Buddy was tired, and I had to push a lot more to keeping him flowing.  We still managed to get the 4 and 5 strides, but it was a lot more work.  Finally, in our last round we nailed the distance to the single oxer (it was the first fence in the course) but we fell apart after that.  Bud was done and we ended up getting a very long 4 then adding to get a 6.  There was a short approach to the last fence, and as soon as we came around the corner I felt Bud back off, so we ended up trotting that one.  We got a 6th for our first round, a 4th in the second, and a 5th in the third.  Didn't place in the last class.

We ended with an eq. on the flat class.  We had had about a 30min break after our last over fences class, so Buddy had recovered a little bit, but he was still pretty tired.  Our canter to the left was icky.  He was strung out and I had to work really hard to pull him together without letting him break to the trot.  Going to the right was easier, so I could focus more on my equitation.  Somehow we placed 4th out of 9. 

 While things may not have gone smoothly, I'm still very happy with how it went.  Buddy didn't care about any of the fences, didn't look at anything, managed to get the "big boy" strides in the line (except that once) and we nailed every single lead change!  He's earned a well deserved day off today!

Back home with his ribbons

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