Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Carriage House Combined Test 2008

Liz & Hannah in the Open-Intermediate division performing their dressage test. Receiving a 36.6 putting them in 2nd place.

Liz & Hannah pleased with their day's performance.

Carriage House is always a great show, close to home and held in one day. I had three horses going in the show. Hannah in the Open Intermediate division, Worth the Wait in Open Novice and Hamel in Open Beginner Novice and Open Novice. The horses were great.

I had to get up extra early on Sunday to feed and turnout the other horses and trailer to Carriage House to be the first ride of the day at 8:00am on Hamel. I arrived, unloaded Hamel, quickly braided him and tacked up. I was very grateful to have my friend Chelsea Leines there helping me groom and take care of the horses.

Hamel's first ride went pretty well. Being an 'off-the-track-thoroughbred' (OTTB) he gets a little excited with all the commotion, but even him being excited really isn't hard to handle. He earned a 38 on his first dressage test and put us in 4th place.

My next ride was on Worth the Wait "Worthy". He is a dressage horse that is experience eventing on the side for a little fun, even though he seems to enjoy the dressage the best, we will see how far he goes as an "event" horse. He earned a 34 in dressage to put him in 3rd place.

Next was Hamel again and he was not so good, this time we rode in the grass ring and he was "hopping" around like a bunny. Like I said above, nothing to hard to put up with, just annoying at times like when you are trying to turn and trot (not hop) down centerline to salute. All in all he was pretty good considering that was only his 3rd show!

My first show jumping round was next beginning with Hamel. He was quite a handful in warm up, just getting excited and once again "hopping". I call it hopping because it really isn't bucking or crowhopping...but he just puts his head down low and hops, it is quite entertaining I am told. He got into the ring and was much better, jumping clean adding only time to his score to finish in 6th place taking home a green ribbon for his mom, Jean Kunz.

I then had my dressage ride on Hannah. I tacked her and warmed up and she felt really good, responding to my aids, doing her laterals smoothly and acing her walk/canter transitions. We entered the ring, performed our test, saluted and thanked the judge. We received a 36.6 putting us in 2nd place.

Next were the two youngsters, starting with Hamel who had seemed to be adjusting better as the day progressed and his hoppiness was slowly getting better. His novice course was great, he jumped everything. He is such a cool horse, and definitely will be a clean show jumper no matter the height of the fences. He finished 7th in the Open Novice division.

Worthy is also a great jumper, he has amazing movement too which makes the dressage come easy to him. He isn't as experienced or comfortable with jumping so he gets a little "ring sour" but only in the show jumping ring. Out on cross country he gallops willingly to and from the crowds, while in the show jump ring he tends to get a little claustrophobic. He had one rail and a few time penalties from doing a little "dance" towards the outgate, overall he was great and as the course continued he progressed quickly.

Hannah was the last ride of the day and the jumps seemed huge compared the the BN and N fences earlier in the day. I was using my new bit (the 3 ring elevator, with a figure 8 noseband, a kinetin noseband and a running martingale) and she seemed to do really well in it. We entered the ring and jumped a great round having only one rail and taking on 7 time penalties, which I was not at all upset about because that meant my bit was working and now I know I just need to work on pressing her more forward without losing control. We finished in 3rd place.

Overall the Sunday show was a success and a lot of fun. The drive home seemed long after the long and hot day at the show but once we arrived at home the horses were happy to see dinner and I was happy to drive home and go to sleep.

“Obstacles are what you see when you take your eyes off your goal” – Jim Lefebvre

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