Monday, June 17, 2013

In the Books

After our last few classes on Sunday morning, we packed up the mare, her tack, lots of dirty saddle pads and headed for home.  Prairie's first 'A' show was full of ups and downs, but for the most part we had a lot of fun, got a ton of data about what works for her and what doesn't and even ended up with some pretty huge successes (along with plenty of margaritas to go around).

I have more video than would be polite to post, but I'm going to work on sorting through it all and hopefully pulling out some highlights (and lowlights) of the whole week.

I'm pretty sure it can all be summed up that it started out rough (like, sandpaper on your face rough) but by Friday Prairie was acting exactly like she does at home and by Sunday we were even putting in rounds that surpassed my expectations for her in our home ring.

Pre-Green was.. frustrating at times.  I don't think Prair was outclassed by the competition, but she was clearly the most tense and her placings reflected that.  I will still argue that the Under Saddle class was pinned pretty terribly (we ended up 5th out of 7) though I don't think we were the only ones who ended up in the wrong spot. 

To help work out some of the kinks, we ended up adding about a ga-zillion warm up rounds for S which in hind sight were totally worth it.  Miles are miles, and Prair got plenty.

By Friday when I took over the ride, Prairie was a totally different horse.  Still a little looky and wanting to build up steam during her courses but much, much more settled.  We placed all over the board in both our Hunter and Eq divisions (literally smeared from 1st to last across our classes) but somehow everyone else was equally erratic so somehow the math put us as Champs in both divisions.  Perhaps the fact that I had totally abandoned any hope of a tri-color sweetened the victory, but I'm pretty sure that in my shock I swore (loudly) in surprise at the very cute (very young) ribbon girl.  I've got to work on that.
Our unexpected loot
After unwinding, unpacking and talking over the weekend with The Boy last night, I am very, very, very pleased with the show.  I had a great time hanging out with new people, learning the ropes and observing the whole scene a bit.  I had a few frustrations and still have some sorting out to do in terms of how I really want to fit into the Hunter/Jumper world but that's more philosophical than anything else. Even with our (unexpected) success I still left feeling a little discouraged.  I can't quite explain it.  Not sure if it's just because I don't really feel "at home" yet, or if it's because I am still a little uncomfortable with some of the norms or what. 

All in all it was awesome.  I'll get some pics and videos up shortly. 

In the meantime, the mare is getting a few days off, CWD is coming out tomorrow to look at the saddle and all else is well in the pony-verse.


  1. I will say this which may or may not explain your PG U/S placing. The judges will usually "not forget" who placed the best over fences and do their best to not disregard them in the flat. Mainly this is for the Tri-Color, and because U/S only counts for 25% for the points for that Tri Color. They do try to keep the winners over fences to be winners overall. (hopefully that explains since i don't really know what went on but it sounds like you had a really good show)

  2. Hunters is super subjective. It will never change, and there will always be shows with classes that don't make sense. Congrats on the tri-color!

  3. Congrats! Sounds like a good weekend overall.

    I've got to tell you, I hate the hunter ring. It's a checkbook race a lot of the time. I start young horses in there and then once they're ready, we move to the jumper ring. Judging is subjective and political. I will support my friends riding hunters forever, of course - people should do what they want. But it is NOT for me. Objective judging, please! At least in dressage there's some transparency.

  4. Well congrats on the tri-color, no matter how it added up, you won it!

  5. Sounds like an educational and very productive show, plenty experience and miles gained and some pretty loot to show for it too - happy days! :)

  6. Congrats. It sounds like you had a great weekend overall!

  7. Glad it was a good weekend over all.. and yes miles are miles! :)

  8. Sounds like you all had some great experiences! :)


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