I do the carrot stretch with my horse sometimes and it helps keep her flexible... just do it after they're warmed up and supple, not in the cold when they're just standing there. That can make their muscles cramp up.
I barrel raced and pole bend in 4S.H.S.R.A and did great at it my horse lost his eye the second year I was in it and he got faster because he had to put all his trust in me...but anyways your first barrel is your money making barrel if you get that one fast clean with no problems then your good to go....dont for get coming around the last one try not to make such a large circle it what adds more time just pull his head more too you and you got it.
O your welcome anytime...one lil thing I never whiped my horse going in are coming out that's why alot of girls have problems going in to the arena because they know they will get whiped...you have to have a bond and understanding with your horse and it takes a lot to have that trust but when you have it its the greatest feeling in the world...just please don't whip ( a lil trick feed when you just get done then they will get faster going in and coming out for that feed)hehe
Haha! I will probably be entering in a gymkhanna soon as well, probably in May or if not then June. I'll be going with Cheyenne's owner and a barn friend :) It'll be really fun! Any tips for me not to fall off while Cheyenne's galloping like a maniac across the ring? Lol