DAY 14. This afternoon Solar and I leave for a little road trip! We’re headed out for a weekend adventure with Kelsy Smith and her Dutch WB/QH Huxley, also of Nayborly Farms. They are competing at Whidbey Island Horse Trials in the preliminary division. I’ll be the official groom/photographer/navi-guesser.
Many thanks to Kim Knott and family who offered to house us all–dogs, horses, and people–for the weekend, just minutes from the show grounds. She generously invited Solar up to stay too, so he and I can ride at her facility when I’m not at the show. At this point in Solar’s training the more exposure and “outings” we can do the better. This will build his confidence and prepare him for a future show or trail riding career in which he will have to adjust to new environments.
EventionTV discusses the importance of going on outings with your horse to prepare them for the sometimes high-stress environment of shows. This is EventionTV’s third installment of a series on retraining OTTBs…
At home the past few days Solar has been doing light trail rides and also practicing flatwork basics. In particular, we’re working on controlling different sections of his body independently of one another. For example, we’ve been doing rein-backs, which are basically wall-assisted turns on the haunch, to help him learn to bring his shoulder around following the rein. This will help set us up for better canter departs. More on this when we get back!
For now, we’re off for a weekend of eventing! My Jack Russell Terrier is particularly excited.
Remember you can also follow Solar’s progress on Twitter at: twitter.com/ChesnaKlimek