Monday, June 6, 2016

Tbird - Ammy Eq

Life is whirling at approximately a million miles per hour and I'm losing days and weeks faster than I can catch up. 

Recapping Thunderbird has totally fallen between the cracks, but with another two weeks of showing starting next week - I really could use the review and reminder of what went well, and what didn't.

My rides at Thunderbird started with my full Eq division on Friday afternoon.  Two rounds over fences and a flat.

With the slight drizzle, N talked me into warming up in the Jumper ring, which - while totally insane - shared the same (great) footing as the ring I was competing in, which was not only better in the damp - but would give me a better sense of how Windsy would ride in it.

I nearly called it quits while I was going through my flatwork due to flailing, panicking jumpers and what is apparently a total disregard for the who left-to-left thing, but Winds was unconcerned, so I tried to be unconcerned and get on with it.

His jumps we spot on. He moved up nicely, stayed uphill and when we nailed three in a row, we decided we weren't going to do any better and headed for the ring.

pre-round treats
I didn't have an opportunity to ride a Low round before my division started - which, as I've explained I love/hate.  However I had ridden Winds in his Pre-Green Under Saddle so I was at least vaguely aware of how the ring was riding and the slope.  The first Eq course was interesting.  Single on the short diagonal, broken line, outside line, rollback.

obligatory arm-wavey-course-visualization
Windsy really picked up in the ring and while you can't really see it on the footage - I panicked a tad about him wanting to take me to the fences, and went to my hand. 

But, we put in a pretty even round, if a bit conservative in my rollback (I should have left one out) and managed a 3rd in a class of 15.

Second round was similar.  Single on the short diagonal (new lead!), long gallop to the oxer, rollback, line, rollback.

Again, I was in my hand and throttling him back too much. He feels so overpowered when I'm mid-course but the videos make it painfully obviously how dialed down I have him.  I liked our first fence and our oxer, the rollback was ok, but I could have shaped it a bit more.  Too quiet into the judge's line, but we got out okay and an okay final rollback, though we took the scenic route (whoops).

We snagged a 3rd again purely because some other lovely riders had some really unfortunate issues with horses who were not interested in the rain (this was a theme for the weekend.  I have never seen so many stops, bucks, pinned ears and general "eff you" moments from otherwise steady mounts).

But whateves, I'll take the ribbon ;)

I let Winds go pee before we did our flat, which whittled to 12 after a few riders decided to avoid the rain (or go school some fences instead). Windsy was awesome, and I was feeling much more confident than I did about my Eq on the flat in Cali.  I stayed down around him and less tense and was rewarded with a 2nd which put us Reserve for the Division.

Love this horse. and really enjoying figuring out how to be a better rider on him.  I feel like we're getting closer... ever so slowly. 

Stay tuned for the Hunters, errrr I mean Competitive Horse Swimming...


  1. You guys look great!! Amazing how fast it's all coming together for you. :-)

  2. Oh wow, just seeing the rain in the pictures makes me miserable. I'm really impressed you kept going in that. Congrats on the reserve champion!

  3. Man, I could watch videos of you and Windsor all day guys look awesome!! I love that you're enjoying figuring out how to become a better rider for him, I think that's what makes this sport so fun. Congrats on the great rounds and on Reserve! :)

  4. What a cool dude! So excited you're showing again soon and cant wait to see the recap of those!

  5. I would say you guys are spot on, on the cusp!

  6. Props to showing in the rain -- I hate doing that.


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