This spring the barn I used to work at are having their annual dressage show; while I worked and rode there I entered in the intro classes on the school horses. This year I want to take my own horse along and enter him, basically to see how he handles it and see what he does. I was thinking of entering him into the intro a and b tests since his canter is still a little unbalanced.
I talked yesterday to the barn manager where I board and she's going to help me set up a small dressage arena in one of the fields so we can practice.
How can I best prepare him to leave the comfort of his own barn and go into the show ring for the first time? I know they have an outdoor arena which they will mostly likely use and that they like to set up flowers and such, plus they have a judges box which will be completely new for him. I can prepare him for flowers I think, and set up plastic chairs and get a group of the boarders to come watch me so he can get used to a crowd of people but what else can I do?
I want him to be as prepared as possible because the barn owner that is holding the show told me a few years ago that my horse way too dangerous to ride and I should get rid of him. I realize this could potentially blow up in my face but he used to live at this barn and it's familiar to him so I thought it would be the best schooling show to test him out at.