I have so much to tell from the show this weekend; it was certainly a roller coaster of emotions but I had a great time and I learned so much. In an effort to stay organized I’m going to break up my show report a little bit differently this time and focus on each division, rather than go day by day. Hopefully it all makes sense, but if it doesn’t, I trust ya’ll to let me know 🙂
After not being able to school on Friday, and scratching our plan of riding in the Hunter Derby, I decided I still wanted to challenge myself and show in something other than just our regular hunter division. I’d already shown in Equitation Over Fences at the previous show, so I opted to add Equitation on the Flat and show in the entire Limit 2′ Equitation division.
But me being me, a flat class wasn’t nearly exciting enough (mostly because my equitation on the flat sucks because I never, ever practice it) so I also opted to add a 2′ Medal class. For those that aren’t in the hunter/jumper world, a Medal class is the same as an Equitation class, but it typically has two phases: an over fences portion and a flat portion, which are combined to determine overall placings.
All of the Equitation classes were held on Saturday, which meant in order to be successful, I really had to get my shit together. Our warm-up round was a bit tough, and it turned out despite his lackadaisical attitude on the lunge line that morning, he was still bright-eyed and bushy tailed. He celebrated hard after one fence and I almost came off… but I held on and finished my course. I had two hunter rounds after that (which is a story for tomorrow) and then my Limit Equitation Over Fences. It was a simple course, no rollbacks or bending lines or anything… which was kind of disappointing. But nonetheless, I went out and rode and focused on stretching up and looking ahead, just like we’ve been practicing in lessons.
And the round was beautiful! Definitely our best trip of the day, even with a few short spots coming out of the lines. I did an great job of making decisions and sticking to them, especially on the approaches to the singles; that far outside single was tough, and I kept seeing just a slightly longer distance to it, but I stayed with Miles well, and balanced back afterwards each and every time. Overall, our effort was good enough to get us first place out of seven! And in case you’re keeping track, Miles and I have now won TWO equitation over fences classes so far this year. I guess we can equitate after all!
After the fence round, we had our flat. It went fine; Miles was a bit up and not quite as relaxed as I would have liked, so I focused more on him than I did thinking about my equitation, since it kind of sucks anyways. By the end of the class, Miles was a bit more soft and his head wasn’t quite reaching for the sky anymore, so I called it a win. And we ended up placing fourth — which was not last! Go team! Overall, our placings were good enough to garner our very first Champion tricolor, which came complete with a baggie of treats for Miles and a snazzy saddle cover. GO team!
Unfortunately our 2′ Opportunity Medal class didn’t fill, so everyone scratched and I was left as the only one in the class. It was the same course as our Equitation Over Fences, so I just jumped around again and got myself a (hardly deserved) first place ribbon. The judge asked me (jokingly) if I wanted to drop my stirrups and go in for the flat. I laughed and said “No way, I’m too old for that!” I think he just wanted to see if he could get me to fall in the mud, especially after my near-acrobatics in the warm-up earlier that day.