This winter a new local show series started up. They had three shows that were unrated schooling shows, and weren't a part of our local show organization. But they decided to get their spring/summer series shows approved OHJA/USHJA Outreach and it seemed like a low key show, so I figured we'd give them a try. The spring series shows are just equitaion and jumpers, held on the same day.
|When the flashbacks hit|
The show was being held at the same barn I bought Peebs from. The trainer/owner who had him has since retired, and a new trainer/program is at the facility now. Since I bought him, a new outdoor arena was installed at the facility, and the old outdoor was now trailer parking. I was about 50/50 on how Peebs would be going back to his old home; either he'd be totally chill, or freaked out because he remembered the place. It ended up being a little of both, he definitely had some flashbacks and remembered where he was, but the new outdoor really confused him. He was pretty distracted at first, but settled in by the end of the day.
|I LOVE this swing-out saddle rack.|
Our first class was a 2' medal class. We were the only entries. Unfortunately that didn't guarantee us the win. Peebs warmed up pretty well, but was very distracted and confused as we headed out to the outdoor arena. I'm not sure if that area was used for pasture before, or if it was just unused, but he took a good long look at things when we went in. He didn't seem to notice the first fence at all, and I ended up stopping him because I was convinced he would have just plowed through it. A swift kick as we circled go his attention and we continued on. I didn't look early enough for our turn to fence two (just off the center line) and thus our bending line to three was pretty crooked. It was also an oxer, which aren't supposed to be in this medal class. I psyched myself out over the crooked line and the oxer and circled again. The judge yelled out that I could keep schooling, but I admitted I was worried about the oxers. The show manager then realized the jump crew hadn't set the course correctly and had them take the oxers out. Once that was fixed we started the course again and made it all the way through.
We then had a long break before our 2' jumper rounds. Peebs got to hang out eating at the trailer while I ate and played on my phone in my truck. When I got on for my jumper rounds Peebs felt much more relaxed and with me. We were both tired so I didn't do a whole lot of warm up. We had three jumper rounds, a timed first round, a power and speed round, and a jump off round. There was only one other person signed up for our division. The course was the same course as our medal round, just with jump offs for the two rounds. Our timed first round rode really well. We had enough pace, but Peebs wasn't running off his feet, I saw all my distances (whether or not they were good distances was another matter), and I was really happy with the round. We placed first.
The other girl in our classes decided to scratch after the first round, so I went in for the power and speed planning on putting in another solid round and not worrying about the j/o. Unfortunately Peebs had other plans, and made it clear that he was tired. We broke to the trot in one of the turns and had to circle, then I lot his right shoulder on another approach and circled again. I tipped my hat to the judge, telling her that there was no reason to keep going. Peebs had been really good, but it was clear that he was done for the day. I had done what I wanted to do at this show, which was knock the rust off and get in rounds jumping away from home. The judge then gave me the best compliment ever, saying she respected the kindness and compassion I showed to my horse. The show manager, and her mom who was running the office, both also complimented me on how nice Peebs is, and what a good team we made. That right there is worth more than the ribbon we won.
Overall, I'm happy with how the day went. I wish I hadn't psyched myself out over the oxers, but I didn't get too into my head over them and was able to go out and have good rounds. Both Peebs and I need to work on our fitness, and hopefully we'll head back to the second show in this series in early May ready to complete the jumper division!