So basically, I had a long talk with my trainer around October/November this past year about if I could possibly get into the Devon Horse Show. Not only is it one of my main goals (besides college, obviously!), but the training will really help me prepare for college. I've been riding since I was nine and lately the pictures I've seen of me riding just look embarassingly like I've only been riding for a few months, which is not good. I have a riding evaluation over the summer for my college to see where I stand with lessons and I think the training needed to compete at shows such as Devon will really help prepare me. Even if I decide not to go to Devon, or it's too late by now, it'll still help me for the fall when I start classes/lessons. I don't want to look foolish Unfortunately being out with a back injury in the beginning of 2010 did not help much.
That being said, is it too late to be able to train? I did research and talked to my trainer, who said that the hunt team she takes to DHS every year (which I wish I knew a few years ago!) do some shows in the winter, weather permitting, but really start getting into showing around the beginning of April and go to DHS for the days that they do hunters and hunt teams. I would have to be prepared to do 1/2 to 45 minutes of flat work to be able to do a solid 3'-3'6" hunter course and should be ready to ride and train at least 5 days a week.
I know there's another barn in the area my mom said she'd be willing to talk to. Although she didn't like the owner much, the owner taught me after my first instructor had to leave for school and she offered me a spot on the show team the very first time she saw me ride. I left after a few months because at the time it was a hassle getting there and was getting a bit expensive. They show at DHS too. Unfortunately being on their show team was costly too so I understood at the time, but was bummed I couldn't accept it.
There's always the possibility that I could just take private lessons somewhere. There's so many barns in my area so it's nice to have a wide range of options of where to go and such. I started thinking..maybe I could just get the private lessons and wait until after college to start showing and training that heavily. The college I'm going to, you only ride 2 times a week and are allowed free-ride and trail riding time with permission. So it's not super vigorous.
I'm trying to make a decision within the next week or so. My mom and I had a huge talk about this back in February. My parents and my grandmother both know Devon is a big dream of mine. This is going to sound kind of corny, but my grandmother loves taking my mom and I to Devon every year to see the hunters and jumpers and I really want to ride in it and she would be in Heaven if she saw me ride in it. I stopped showing probably when I was 13? I don't think she's ever really seen me ride in a show before. She's seen me ride when I was in a "half-ownership" type of deal, but that was pretty much it.
I know that Devon is not going anywhere and neither are the trainers I have contact with, but this would be huge to be in it before college :)
One last thing..I was also looking into Dressage lessons just to get a good seat and the basics of it down for possibly a few months and over the summer. So if the whole showing scenario doesn't work out, my mom said I could contact the woman who owns the Dressage barn about 40 minutes away from me. I wouldn't show, just take lessons, as I am not good at memorizing things like Dressage tests. We did a mock dressage show at my old barn during summer camp and I chickened out because I couldn't remember the test Remembering courses I feel is much easier for me.
Sooo..thoughts? I don't mean to ramble and I apologize if that was way too much to explain what I'm trying to ask & get across! (doesn't help that I have two outlines to write for a government project due tomorrow and I still haven't started them, heehe!)
Thanks! Opinions much appreciated!