DAY 8. Cue the pep rally music, we might need it! On Friday I sent entries for Joey and Solar to participate in their first. show. ever.
That’s right folks; I’m entering two inexperienced horses in the same class in a real one day event for three phases of fun each. Chehalis Valley Pony Club kindly supported Solar with a discounted entry fee, making this
harebrained idea a reality. Both horses are entered in the walk/trot groundpole division.
Now before we get too carried away, let’s remember that this is just the walk/trot/groundpole division (this is what I’m telling myself over and over so I can sleep at night). Technically there won’t be any real jumping. To put things in perspective, these bunnies jump higher than what we’ll be doing:
So the horses won’t actually have to jump at this show since the courses consist of poles conveniently lying flat on the ground. But for our purposes, this is great. Joey is only 3 years old and not physically finished growing; he’ll have to wait to tackle the bigger jumps. Solar has no previous jumping or show experience, so we can use this opportunity to see how he handles a show environment and to practice the basics–go forward, steer, stop, remain calm… As for me, I haven’t evented in a while, having had to take a hiatus from eventing and doing dressage instead. This is a chance for all three of us to get our feet wet.
Joey is my young, charismatic uncolored Paint (registered APHA but in terms of bloodlines he’s 1/2 thoroughbred) and my future three-day eventing champion–at least that’s the idea. At 3 years old, he looks and acts like a 5 year old. He’s big and bold and boasts an indefatigable mentality of “I got this!” (even when I really don’t think he’s ready to get that). I can only hope that they won’t eliminate Joey from the walk/trot division for cantering or perhaps assailing spectators with unwanted snuggles.
Even though the walk/trot introductory dressage test is quite possibly the easiest dressage pattern in the entire world, I’m beginning to regard it with as much respect and foreboding as the FEI Prix St. George tests I rode last year… It’s all a matter of perspective. I’ve got to navigate two green horses who are not confirmed in the contact around a 20 x 40 meter arena (bend, what bend?). Try driving a car in 4-wheel drive with no power steering, faulty breaks, and a mind of its own contained only by a teeny tiny white picket fence.
In prep for the groundpole “jumping” phases of the competition (and to make sure that I hadn’t made a grave mistake entering Solar with such little experience under his belt), we tested Solar over a Solar-sized jumping course. This is his first attempt ever at going over a sequence of jumps:
I’m looking forward to taking these two bays out for their debut on the horse show scene. Thanks again to Chehalis Valley Pony Club for hosting the CVPC Benefit Horse Trials each year and for supporting Solar and OTTBs!