Monday, July 24, 2017

MIlner Downs - The start of the week

Last week we ventured to Milner Downs to return to what was one of my favorite shows last year.  It's hard to beat a big, gorgeous, grass field to gallop around in all week, but on top of that the staff is crazy friendly, the hospitality is great and it ends up feeling more like a fun summer camp than a frenzied horse show.

Our plan was to step Windsor up a bit from his extra (extra) light duty at Tbird last month and see how he felt.

Tuesday he hacked out well, so I was excited to see him go Wednesday. 

Windsor, was also excited to go Wednesday (though not excited about selfies) - and the single warm up round at 2'9" turned into three, as Mister Man lacked a bit of focus and manners during his first (two) trips around.

Loose hair, don't care!
Here's the first round - not bad by any means, but if you know Winds, you can see that he's powering off the ground and tight in his back, both signs that he wants to paaaarrrrrrrty.

By the third round he was a bit less excited to be out in the big world:

It was a bit to be expected, we haven't been lunging him at all (which I like) - and even last year when Milner was our 6th week of showing, he perked up quite a bit when he got out in the big field. 

We ended the day on a good note, and opted to hack the Under Saddle just to let him explore the ring a bit more.  With all the extra classes he ended up with a very unplanned Reserve Champion in the Schooling 2'9" Hunter division.

Definitely didn't mean to take him around the ring three times, but height doesn't seem to affect his freshness (much), so I'm glad we kept it low at 2'9" and let him work out his wiggles without too much effort. 

Looking at the schedule for the rest of the week, my 2'9" Modified AA's was stretched out over Thursday, Saturday and Sunday - leaving a nice gap on Friday for Winds to maybe contest the Derby. 

Since he hadn't popped over anything over 2'9" since last November (gulp), we added one round at 3' on Thursday to see if he felt loose, or if the added height brought out any old symptoms of discomfort. 

(looks like a different beast when he is braided)

He jumped the 3' better than the 2'9" so we finalized our plan to have him do the (one round Canadian style) derby Friday, and just cart me around one round at a time the rest of the week.

Stay tuned for the DERBY, and also my triumphant (low) return to my beloved 2'9".


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