Originally Posted by cowgirls4
He wont canter around barrels, trot if lucky but he tends to slow down when he turns, which is not good
, so some help please.
On the contrary, dropping a little bit of speed is a good
bad. This is called "rate," and by rating he's getting himself ready for the turn so when he does, he won't fall down. Rate, bend, and responding to leg pressure is ideal for barrel horses (especially competitive ones).
| "A winning barrel horse must know how to rate," says Martha Josey, world champion barrel racer and clinician. "In simple terms, rating means slowing down and positioning your horse properly for the barrel turn. A winning barrel horse, depending on his particular style of turning, will require different rate distances." |
Rating Your Run - HorseChannel.com
Also, what's the size of the pattern you're running?
If you have a small pattern your horse may be unwilling to pick up his lope because he'll have to slow for the turn soon, anyway. We have a few "quick" horses who do this at the livery; they won't pick up the lope in the pasture arena, even with some quirt action, but when at shows with bigger patterns they will
pick up speed with very little (if not no
) persuasion. If you need to know about the different pattern sizes, check this link
. If the horse can't "open up" and pick up his speed because of a small pattern, I wouldn't even bother asking for it until the pattern was "upgraded."