Warning, I wrote this post roughly a month ago but then had some blog issues. Lots of catch up to come!
In some ways it’s hard to believe show season is over already. It was also a very strange show for me, particularly because both days I ended up needing to be in two rings at around the same time.
This show was at my home barn which makes life much easier. On schooling day I left work early trying to avoid the big rush of people, but right after a very intense meeting that had taken up my entire day otherwise. This wasn’t the best recipe for good riding, my brain just wasn’t in the right place. Also, the rings were fairly full. One person in particular seemed oblivious and kept almost running us over so my schooling stress was high. I was disappointed in my own riding, but happy with my horse who as usual just took care of me and helped pick up my slack.
Saturday I started out with my limit equitation first. Sadly, the course was basically a hunter course with jumper fences. I got a bad distance into our line by the judge which was a bummer, but Ernie moved right up to make the strides just fine. I had my equitation flat after that, where I placed last despite Ernie being quite good and soft. Times like that I wish you could easily get judge’s comments. We got a short break after that before our hunter trips.
We did a warm up round that was blue/red and got a blue ribbon for that. I guess we didn’t need that warm up, oops! The first hunter trip went well and we placed second. The second hunter trip I second guessed a single oxer by the judge which took us out of the ribbons.
Sunday morning I was unsure what ring I would start with. I really wanted to focus on my limit adult medal final class, but I felt a bit stressed as they were calling for a set time to close my classes in the hunter ring. My trainer told me to stick with the medal. Our first round of medal went really well other than a dropped rail at a skinny fence (that dropped so many times that day). I scored a 74, or a 78 minus 4 for the rail. I went into the test in 3rd place and maintained that placing. Video of that test below.
To spice things up, I ended up going in for my hunter round between my medal trip and my test (video of that trip below). It was probably our best hunter trip at a home show all season. It was pretty fun hearing us called in first place for that class as I started my medal test in the other ring.
The bad news was that they pinned my low equitation class while I was in that test as well which I hadn’t gotten to do yet… My trainer went back to them and made them reopen it, but I was so frazzled between being on for so long and just completing my medal and learning the equitation course in two seconds that it was definitely my worst course of the whole season. So that was a bummer!
Poor Ernie then had to immediately go into two flat classes and I knew he needed to go to the bathroom by the way he was moving. Side note Ernie doesn’t poop in the ring unless he absolutely has to, so he gets a bit tense and wants to jig around at times. Not the best for my hunter hack or equitation. Either way he tried to be good but it wasn’t our day there.
After over two and a half hours in the saddle poor Ernie finally got a break until our low adult medal final. I was also struggling a lot after such an intense few hours and had to go memorize another windy medal course including being able to assign jump order number to the fences. Thankfully some friends quizzed me on jump numbers and I took some time to eat lunch and try to chill out.
Our medal round for the low adults wasn’t quite as nice as our limit adult round but still decent enough to send us into the test in 4th place. I had a great test and thought maybe I could move up a placing. You had to face away from the ring for the test so no one could see anyone else’s. When they placings were announced I remained in 4th place but as I left the ring after the victory lap the trainers had us stick around. It turned out the rider the judge pinned to win the class had jumped the wrong fence (of the same color) in her test. I felt so bad for the girl who got announced as the winner and had it taken away to be moved down to 4th. So that’s how I ended up winning 3rd in both my medal finals for the weekend.
The real icing on the cake was winning my first hunter division champion ribbon with Ernie at this show. The placings were all over so a 1st and 2nd over fences alone brought it home.
It’s nice to get to the end of a show season and feel like you learned a lot and did well.
Now to wait and see how we ended up for end of season placings.