Friday, July 6, 2012

Show Day Part 3: The Tests

And so, with a quiet, tired horse, a quick warm up under our belt, it was time to conquer Training Level Test 1.

Enter the arena  for our quick tour around the dressage court, say hi to the judges, wait for our bell, and off we go, entering at A.  All of that went on without a hitch - turns out our 5 mile walking tour of the grounds paid off- Ben wasn't scared of anything.

Enter at A - were we completely center? ehh, not so much. Halt, salute, trot off- lovely transition...approaching C to turn left....and Ben says "WTF is that? A BOX? With PEOPLE IN IT?" Naughty he was not, but stop and stare he did. I gave him a moment and then urged him on, and we continued our test.

Transitions in all the right spots...our circles were kinda circular, more like 25 m on one side and 15 on the other. Stretchy circle was stretchy...and then I picked up the reins and forgot to add some juice, so we started walking long before A, where we were to begin our medium walk.

There was nothing medium about our walk. I wasn't about to give him a really strong aid while on display, so amble on we went.

Everything else went alright - didn't exactly hit the mark down the centerline on the way to the finish either.

Shortly after wards I got my first test results, and the judge said something about his hind end falling out, and him needing more impulsion. She questioned his movement - which when he is tired can look lateral. So I took that to heart and bumped him up a bit for Test 2.

Much of the same problems in T1 haunted us in T2. But honestly, I didn't care. I was having a blast. Ben was being such a good boy, and that was all that mattered.

Our scores landed us in the middle of the pack. T1 we got a 6th place, and our score was 55.4% I believe. That was out of 13 horses. T2 we got a score of 54.6% which got us 4th place, out of 11 or 12. Lots of room to improve, but not a bad start. All of the scores were quite low that day, even the winning scores were low 60's for training level.