Saturday, April 11, 2015

The Focus Returns

Today was a great day for the mare.  As much as I expect any horse to have good and bad days, with mares it's just expected for the highs to be high(er) and the lows to be low(er).

Today Prair was just on it.  She won both low classes with N (2'3" and 2'6") and I should have videoed them, but I didn't want to jinx things.  The big progression for Prair is that she's really reaching with her neck more (in a good way not a lurchy way..) and balancing up and back more.

Or at least she's doing those things with N.

With me? maybe not so consistent yet.

Prair's contribution to the ribbon pile today

But the two Low rounds were stunning.  Prair looked soft but forward and like she was reaching out to sniff a flower at every fence.  loved it.

With me, she was also good.  My first round was our best in the show ring yet.

N told me to think about establishing a hand gallop as our pace, and the idea of being more forward than necessary meant that I was pretty much barely forward enough...

The ring was pretty flooded, so the mud puddles were trying to suck out our pace at every turn - making a big forward pace and lots of leg all the more important. 

The plan worked great for us, and in thinking that I needed to keep creating pace, I also ended up really straightening the mare from my leg more than usual. 

My biggest success was moving up to a nice Hunter Gap going into each line.  It just flowed and maintained momentum in a way that we don't often accomplish.

The second round was also good, but not quite as brilliant as the first. I had a couple weak distances, so we weren't as even throughout our course, but there were no major bobbles. 

our division combined with the kids, (which always terrifies me a bit) but we snagged a first and fourth over fences.

As I was debriefing with N, I noticed a drug tester hovering and knew we had been drawn.  My theory is always be nice and helpful to the vet and testers, so we chatted a bit and she was very polite about not interrupting us while we waited for our flat. 

The hack went well - a tad crazy between the traffic and the puddles, but I was able to float my rein almost the entire time.  I could have pushed the mare a tad more with my leg for a bigger, loftier gait, but with a few misbehaving horses in the class, I was just a tad apprehensive about really moving her out without a lot of contact.

We snagged the blue for a really nice end to the day.

Prair complied nicely with the tester and (as promised) peed nearly instantly after being returned to her stall. 

Getting pulled for testing feels a bit like being stopped by the cops - even when you know you haven't done anything wrong, it still feels like they might pin something on you?  Very irrational, but very primitive response.

Anyway, 4 blues, 1 white, a big cup of mare pee and some blood and we were done with the day.

Tomorrow we have two more rounds over fences and our fun little medal, then show is DONEZO and the mare gets a nice break from the show ring until June. 

Preach.

8 comments:

  1. Woohoo you guys are rocking it!
    So much satin to add to what you have already won - you're going to need to build an extension to the garage to house it all!
    ☺☺☺☺

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  2. You guys are rockstars as always! :D

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  3. congrats again!! i am pretty sure i'd be super irrationally nervous about testers too lol

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  4. Congrats on some awesome rounds! Very impressive ribbon pile :)

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  5. Love days like this! Congrats! You are so right, with mares the highs are very high and the lows can be horribly low.

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  6. Id be pretty exhausted if I was you guys!

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