Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Changes are in the air...

Some changes are in the air for us, but I can't get into that quite yet!  What I can go into are updates on the ponies!

          (This is our new look!  Sleeping before Cross Country!  That is until Scooby spots the start box!)

First off, I never posted about Marlborough....probably because that was the weekend from hell and I just wanted to forget it all together!  The drive was absolutely horrible to start!  Traffic, traffic, traffic.  Operating on about 5 hours of sleep, we fetched Scooby from the stabling farm and drove over the Horse Trials for an early morning Dressage test...ohhhhh how I hate when stabling is off grounds.....Dressage was not great...blah..39. We warmed up for Show Jumping and Scooby just did not feel right..or maybe it was me?  Never the less, he felt tired and I could not find my distances.  I was getting into everything deep.  Blah again.  Show Jumping rode just as the warm up did..Both of us definitely not on our A game and everything was deep.  Four rails later, I left Show Jumping feeling very down.  I headed over to Cross Country questioning whether I should withdraw Scooby or run him?  I had an overwhelming feeling that I should withdraw.  I have never experienced that before.  Worse yet, Chris was already down by the jump that he wanted to film.  Amazingly, I spotted Shane across the field and flagged her down.  She agreed that we did not look like ourselves in Show Jumping and that I needed to go with my gut feeling.  She nicely allowed me to use her cell to call Chris with the news!  I actually felt good about the decision and was not at all upset.  It felt right.  The crazy thing is,  as we were back at the trailers, all I heard over the loudspeaker was how many problems were on course.  Refusals, eliminations, falls, horse and rider falls!  It was so bad that second place finished in the 90's!!!!!!  Talk about intuition!  I will ALWAYS go with my gut!  Who knows, with how solid we are on cross country, we could have won this competition......or...we could have had a serious fall?  We will never know, but I am glad we went home safe and confident...just a little grumpy because of how tired I was!

After Marlborough, I had to change my fall schedule around.  I originally planned to compete down at Loch Moy on October 8-9, but the omnibus stated that the course was difficult, so our cross country ride at Marlborough was crucial in going to Loch Moy, and well since we never went cross country, I had to change my plans.  What I settled on was Radnor Horse Trials, which ran on October 8th.  I loveee Radnor and was actually kind of bummed that I was not going to compete there this year because they do not run a full Prelim.  We had to settle for Prelim/Training, but I am not going to complain.  It is just more experience and I would at least be able to ride Dressage and Show Jumping as a full Preliminary.  It was an overall great day.  I was a little disappointed in my Dressage Score though.  We scored a 38, but had our best test at Prelim.  We have scored 38's often at Prelim and have been nowhere near as solid.  It's ok..just need to keep improving!  Also, the biggest bummer of all is that Radnor messed up the cross country times for Prelim/Training and did not record them!!  They gave everybody the optimum time.  That made me soooooooo mad!  We booked it around cross country and still only came in about 15 seconds under.  Chris said that Scooby and I moved much faster than the other horses he saw.  I am certain that there would have been several time penalties.  Very upsetting for everybody who came in on time.  We still finished in fourth (adding only one rail to our score), but could we have finished higher up?  Possibly.  Even more upsetting...a $500 prize for first place!!  Not saying we would have won, but this is a recognized competition for pete's sake!  It is also questionable if they recorded the jumping penalties?  I overheard some other competitors asking them about that and the response was a little concerning..Definitely filling out the event evaluation form!  One thing that always really irritates me, and this happens with several Horse Trials.  The people doing the scores get very angry when competitors ask them when they will post.  Now I know scoring CAN be done promptly because several competitions do it, but when competitors have to wait an hour and a half - two hours after the last ride to receive scores, we should not receive an attitude when an inquiry is made about how much longer it will take.  If they know it is going to be quite a bit longer...make an announcement!  Do not give the competitors, who are paying several hundred dollars to be there, an attitude!  It is absolutely rediculous and uncalled for.

Well now that I got that little vent out of my system...Here are the videos!!!  Yay!

New Jersey Horse Trials will be running on the 29-30th and I am trying my VERY best to keep us on track for it.  Like I said, I am going through some changes and it has been incredibly difficult to make myself get out there and ride Black Beauty!  I am doing it though and we WILL be there!!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Kazzy The Rockstar!

Decisions Decions!  What to do with this horse?!?!?!  Kazzy had his second HT on Sunday and once again... was a ROCKSTAR!!  Despite picking up the incorrect lead twice on our first canter, he put in a solid test to score a 38.5.  Even with that, he was only two points out of first!  His trot work was again, very solid.  The footing the entire day was a sloppy mess, but everyone made the best of it and I am thankful that Michelle (the organizer and owner of Burgundy Hollow) allowed the Horse Trial to go on!  Michelle also allowed me to include the Beginner Novice/Novice water complex into my cross country course.  That was wonderful because it was the first time that Kazzy rode a water complex on an actual course (minus the fact that we would not be penalized for refusals).  He was awesome though and only had a tiny bit of hesitation.  Nothing that would have been penalized.  I made full use of this schooling option and made three passes through before jumping the last fence on course!  By the second go, he was leaping in!  I have been contemplating bringing him with Scooby to the New Jersey Horse Trials at the end of October, but we would have a water complex on course, so I really wanted to see how he would handle a "surprise" water.  He answered that question very well, so we will see, maybe both my ponies will be at New Jersey!  In the meantime, I have to decide whether to temporarily pull Kaz's "for sale" listing.  I think he is quite special and a very big part of me would like to tap into those eventing skills even more before selling him, but I do not have unlimited funds.  One horse at Prelim is costly enough!!  We could make it work, but I just don't know what to do!!  Opinions please!!!!!! 

Below are video clips from Burgundy Hollow Farm (including the water!!)