Academy Show & the Return of Winter

Bentley and a really big road pony From Horses

Today did not start with a lot of promise.  After our spring tease, winter has returned with a vengeance.  It was snowing when I got up, and I immediately started freaking out about getting to the show on time.  Stupid, really, since it didn’t start for 4 hours!  I got off to an early start, and was glad I did.  They hadn’t done anything to the roads other than throw down a bunch of sand.  Wasn’t very effective, if you ask me.  Driving sucked.

Made it to the show in a little over an hour – it usually takes about 40 minutes to drive out there.  I arrived as M & D were lugging the tack in – I grabbed my saddle and a tack box and started thinking about getting Nyk ready.  He was a little irritated with me because D had just tossed a flake of hay into his stall, and all he really wanted to do was eat.  Honestly, that’s all he ever wants to do.  He is one hungry little pony, and it’s starting to show at his waistline.  His blankie is stretching in ways not anticipated by the manufacturers.

I was in the first class, which was split because one of the trainers had two riders but only one horse.  Bummer.  I didn’t get to ride with Laurie.  I think that is one of the first times since I started going to the academy shows that we weren’t in the first class together.  Boo.

I thought that Nyk did a great job, but the judge disagreed.  We changed his tack at the last minute and used a regular martingale instead of the draw reins, because his other riders today have a tendency to bear down on the draw rein and bury his head between his knees.  I thought it would be a great way to practice what S had shown me on Thursday (post coming soon) and was glad that we were trying something new.  I did keep him off the bridle, and I thought he looked really cute.  He cantered and didn’t quit like at the last show, and he flat walked.  The judge gave us a second place, and that is the first time that we didn’t get a blue in that class.  I was a little bummed, but when M said after that she didn’t understand the placings, I decided that it didn’t matter. 

The eq class was next, and Nyk was a little sluggish, but we placed 2nd, which is better than we have done lately in that class.  I tried to use a whip to keep his speed a little more consistent, but he wouldn’t walk in the warm up ring, so I decided not to use it.  I think I’m going to take my spurs to the next show and see if that keeps him moving along.  The judge called for the trot/walk/canter/walk, then had us reverse, WALK/canter/trot.  That changes things up, and I think only one other judge in the last 3 years has done that.  I blew my diagonal every time we dropped from the canter to the trot.  Argh.

The rail work for the pattern class was pretty solid, but we charged through the pattern.  I am determined to get this stupid thing right sooner or later.  Better luck next time, and as long as we aren’t last, I’ll be happy with my progress.

Some of the other kids rode Nyk, too.  Audie had a little trouble with the canter, but she let herself get boxed in behind Harley in their first class, and then she couldn’t get him to canter.  Or walk.  She did have the cleanest pattern, I thought.  Nyk was good with all of the kids.

I didn’t linger, as it’s Valentine’s Day and I wanted to get home so Dean and I could go out to dinner.  I also wanted to stop and pick up a iPhone because I can upgrade my phone today, but that didn’t happen.  Even though I was told that I could keep just my data plan and not add voice when I called and asked last week, I was told today that you have to have a voice and data plan with the iPhone.  I haven’t decided if it’s worth the extra $30 a month just for the privilege of dropping another 200 bucks on the phone. 

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