I don’t like to horse show by myself anymore, now that I’ve had the experience of riding with a great group of girls. We help each other out and we cheer each other on; it makes the successes that much better and the failures that much less significant. So Saturday I was at the showgrounds bright and early to cheer on barnmates in the first two divisions of the day.
Our first rider did really well, despite being very nervous. She had good rounds over fences on Vinnie and finished out her division by winning the flat class! Our next rider had a tough time and went off course in two of her over fences classes. The first time was a major bummer because the round was beautiful and then she just had trouble recovering. But she’s an amazing young lady and didn’t let it get her down; she was all smiles the rest of the day and thanked her horse for trying so hard.
I was up next, and pretty nervous. I didn’t ride very well in the warm-up ring, including crashing a jump because I didn’t pick a distance. Sound familiar? Yeah, my MO has been to ride like a complete sack of potatoes at horse shows this year. But I came off that jump and mentally SCREAMED at myself. What in the world am I doing?! I am a better rider than this, I told myself.
And it worked.
I had three of the best hunter rounds I’ve ever ridden. Each one was smooth, consistent and even. I thought about my pace, picked a distance to each fence and thought about my path. Miles got all of his lead changes and even though we did the add-stride, which made us less competitive, I didn’t care at all. I had so much fun!!
I almost went home after our warm-up round, it was that nice!
We got 5th (out of five) in our first judged trip.
And moved up to 3rd for our final trip!!
The under saddle was okay, and then I broke at the canter so we got 5th out of five. I was pissed at myself for such a stupid mistake, but only for a second because then I remembered our fence rounds and couldn’t stop grinning like a fool!!
After everyone finished for the day, a few of us went out for dinner and got home around 9 pm. At 9:30 or so, I got a text that Nichole’s lease horse was colicking, so we raced back to the showgrounds. She got banamine and we walked her for several hours before the vet arrived. Despite his best efforts, she just wasn’t getting any more comfortable so at 1:30am she went to Ohio State University.
Luckily, it seemed like the trailer ride jostled her around just enough to shift things back into place because she pooped the minute she stepped off the trailer. OSU ran her vitals and did an ultrasound just to be sure, but the owner decided not to admit her, since the vets didn’t find much wrong with her except some slight dehydration.
All told, I finally rolled into bed at 4am… knowing that tomorrow would be another early morning with a barnmate in the first class at 8am. I briefly thought about skipping it and sleeping in, but her parents were the ones that stayed up all night to trailer to OSU. There was no way I would leave her to get two horses ready and ride them both in a $1500 Hunter Stakes class by herself.
We’re a team, and teammates stick together.