Finally a report about our AWESOME day at Twin Towers, where we competed in Serenity Valley Farm’s Combined Test.
|Happy after dressage.|
We got to TT at around 8AM – the morning wasn’t that early, which was awesome. Julie’s dressage (she was in the x-rails division, and so had the Intro B dressage test) was at around 9, then her show jumping was an hour or so later. Yogi and Julie did awesome. He was so obedient in the dressage, of course – that was no surprise, really. What really surprised me was how lazy he was in the show jumping! He didn’t have any faults, but he didn’t overjump the fences at all, and he even hit a couple fences.
Laziness aside, Yogi and Julie did awesome, and ended on their dressage score for a second place out of around 10 entries!
We had an hour or so until it was time to get on Robbye. Remembering our last show at TT, where, in warmup, she tried her hardest to get me off of her, I was very cautious in the beginning of our warmup. Plus we had had a crappy lesson the night before, and I was all-around scared for our test. But the warmup was decent, and I got some good canter transitions (something we had fought about the night before), so I was feeling okay.
So the horse before us is leaving the ring, and I take Rob around between the judge’s box and the ring. The judge and scribe hear me talking to her; “Is this a baby here?”. Yes, quite a baby at the moment! She peaked at the people in the box, but didn’t mind too much. Then, as we’re walking down the long side right outside of the arena, she sees people schooling out on cross country and…bolts. Completely loses her brains for a second! AHH!! It’s time to go in the ring, and we’re doing this now?!!?
I’m so glad I decided to walk past the judge’s box, and that they knew she’s a baby, because I think they gave us a little extra time in the ring before ringing the bell. By that time, we were back to normal (well, no, she was still wild, but at least she was under control!) and ready to kick butt in our test.
…And we did! Her head was a little higher than normal the whole time, but other than that I’m very pleased. I flubbed one of the canter transitions, but we nailed the other. The judging was very generous, but I felt like we earned it if only because of the dramatic entrance!
So, we started the SJ phase in…third place!
Warmup for SJ was pretty good. She was willing over a couple larger fences, so I decided to just stand around and wait, instead of using up all her energy. I was a little scared of the course – there was an oxer, as well as a couple fences with width, and there was a fence with a bale of straw underneath it (she has shied at straw before). The turns weren’t easy, and I knew we’d need some weird lead changes. But also…pretty didn’t matter! This is SHOW JUMPING!! We could trot these fences, I could use my crop, and I could yell as much as I wanted.
I told myself and Julie, that above all I was going to commit to every fence – that issue more than anything has been holding us back in jumping. I suck back before a fence, which makes her add, chip, knock, or crash through.
I was determined to ride aggressively and kick her butt if she needed it.
And I totally did.
Historically at shows I end up exceedingly proud of Rob. She is such a good girl, and we’ve worked really hard, and I always seem to be surprised at how awesome she is. At this show, though, I really ended up really proud of myself. I told myself I was going to commit to every fence, and then I absolutely kicked Rob’s butt every time she sucked back. I got her over the first fence (she looked at it..), I got her over the oxer, I got her over the straw fence, and we did it all clear! Yes, we put on a show (okay, I’m a loud jumper, apparently…), but it was a good show, I’d like to think. Really, we just started jumping four months ago, and here we are killing a BN SJ course. Sweet.
So, we ended up getting third place out of around 14. So. Frickin. Awesome.
(And a couple more dressage screenshots!)