|Penn before 3-1 on Saturday.|
I entered 3-1 and 2-3 both days. The plan was to ride 3-1 and 2-3 on Saturday, as long as 3-1 was ridden first, otherwise I would scratch 2-3. For Sunday, if I got my bronze on Saturday, I was going to scratch 3-1 and only ride 2-3. If I didn't, I was going to scratch 2-3 if it was before 3-1. During the week before, I had some crazy notion that I had enough horse to possibly ride all 4 tests! Ha. After the salvage ride in 2-3 on Saturday, I firmly squashed the idea that he would ever ride more than one test in a day at any level above first/second. Especially not the hideously long 2-3 test!
|Penn before 3-1 on Saturday.PC: Austen|
Anyway, we played at Austen's barn in the morning after Penn went for his walk, then came back and did Penn's pre-test routine. The plan was to get down to warm up a bit sooner than the day before and drill the 3 loops a bit so I felt more comfortable than the day before.
This test was for the same judge that judged our 2-3 test the day before. Apparently, we were still lacking all the things. Right from the beginning of watching the video, I could tell he needed more trot. I didn't realize that on him at the time, or maybe I couldn't access any more at the time. Can't remember. Penn needed more suspension in the medium trot again, sorry judge, that's just where he's at right now. I don't have much to say about the trot work, I thought it was a lot better than the day before and the judge kind of agreed (I mean, I had some 6.5s instead of straight 6s!). The halt rein back was bad, then I completely messed up the first TOH when he got stuck. The second one was a bit better. Overall, Penn's walk needs to be a bit more relaxed, ugh.
Then the coughing. So much coughing. I thought it only messed up the start of our canter 3-loop, but looking back at the video, it started when I brought him back from the medium canter, which the judge gave us a 4 for with "needs connection". Oops, can't be connected and coughing. He just about ripped me out of the tack in his coughing fit. It directly effected the amount of sit I had in the first 3-loop, which was marked down for needing more collection. The lack of collection continued to screw me, I had way too many trot steps for the next simple change.
The next medium canter and transition was probably the best movement of the test, he stayed up and reached and came back promptly and was nice and straight. The judge rewarded it with 7s.
The next 3-loop had misshapen and unevenly shaped loops. Sigh. That's my own fault, I need to actually measure in our outdoor and mark out the edges properly. And properly measure where each letter should go so I'm not guessing at where they are, so I can be much more accurate. It's a double coefficient move, so I mean, it's worth the measuring.
I completely botched the next simple change. I started sitting Penn down for it, and he simply broke to trot. Yuck. Well deserved 4.
|It took much longer than it should have to get him in. The horse that goes swimming won't get in ankle deep water.|
|He was so thirsty. He drank for several minutes before getting in.|
Immediately following this video, one official came down and yelled at us. Oh well. We were on our way out anyway!
We flew through getting Penn packed up, and Austen ran down to get my dismal test- a 59.370% for 4th place. I was miffed because it felt so much better than the previous day's test, but scored worse. And not only worse, but sub-60! Second and third places were tied with a 60.3%, and first was a 68% on a PSG horse. Ok, so I was close enough to everyone who is near my skill level, lol! Still, the 59% really shook my confidence in my abilities to warm up and ride my horse on my own, so I was really looking forward to my lesson on Tuesday. I wanted to cover 1-3 and the halts (because they had been dismal at home), and basically just get a confidence boost.
Looking back at the video, I can see that majority of the work WAS better than the day before. What screwed me were the coefficients with the handful of single bad marks: my entry is usually much better (4), unsquare halt and resistant rein back (5), sticking in the first TOH (4x2), his normally loose free walk that gains extra points was missing (6x2), coughing in the medium-collected canter transition (4), a 3 loop that would have been ok if he wasn't coughing through the start (6x2), the first simple change (5x2), and the second simple change (4x2). With the rest being half and half 6 and 6.5, with a smattering of 7s, the mistakes were too much to overcome. The medium-collected canter transition, 3 loop serpentine, and the first simple change were all effected by the coughing fit. I lost his collection and never really got it back. Two of those 3 moves are double coefficients.
During the pack up process, my husband texted me to see if I was done for the day, and then my parents called. My grandfather had died that afternoon. It wasn't a complete surprise- he had fallen asleep on Wednesday and we weren't sure if he was going to wake up again. I had left for the weekend anyway, and if he passed while I was gone, I was going to come home Monday and skip trail riding and my lesson. I checked in with my mom and if she needed anything, and then if she minded if I kept to my original plan to go to lesson. The burial wasn't going to be before Wednesday, so I didn't actually need to be home yet unless she needed me. I explained that I was really shaken from my two 2-3 tests and needed a lesson, so she agreed with me continuing my plan.
Austen picked up more Straw-ber-ritas on our way to her barn, where we settled Penn in his own massive field (like 1-2 acres all to himself). They didn't have a stall for him that weekend, so we had arranged a paddock because I figured he'd be happier being outside anyway. He had zero interest in dinner when I hung it for him. I had put him in the field without dinner to see if he'd lose his shit over being out by himself. Nope, he walked around, rolled, and looked. I hung his feed and shook his grain so he would know it's there. He looked at me and then cantered away in a manner that I'm pretty sure he thought he was flying, but alas, he was not.
We got pizza and ate and drank on the farm deck for a while before going back to visit Penn and see what he was up to now that horses had been turned out for the night. He was chilling by the gate, half interested in his food and half interested in his new neighbors. We headed out shortly after, bringing an end to the horse show part of the weekend!
|Bubble wrapped, just in case.|