Horse talk for mature people over 40 - Page 102 - The Horse Forum
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post #1011 of 29438 Old 03-22-2012, 04:42 AM
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Farmpony Great pictures and no doubt, happy memories from them.

A musical ride gave me both the biggest disappointment and the proudest moment of my teaching life.

Our County Show put on a musical ride competition. We entered a team and were beaten which was fair enough. The Pony Club beat us. The ride they put on had been performed many times (their original team had been mostly 'my' riders but it was not possible to get them all to practice when the PC decided to continue with it)
The show wanted to do the same competition the following year so, we entered. It was 35 years ago, the Queen's silver jubilee.
The PC had made the whole thing into a sort of pageant with non riding children involved and one child being led whilst riding side saddle. I had the idea of having al my kids riding side saddle if I could find enough saddles.

I got the ride together, managed to beg and borrow saddles. The theme was to have non riding children start the ride with dancing and being the markers during the ride with two of my youngest riders (3 and 4) entering as king and queen in a pony and trap, and then 16 riders, 8 sidesaddle, 8 astride.

They performed perfectly. Movements all at a trot, were complex, turnout immaculate. The music had the audience tapping their feet and, there was no way they could have improved.
When it came time to announce the winners it was given to the Pony Club. They were not expecting it.
Now, I am not a bad looser at all however, this was not fair and I wanted to know how it was judged. The organiser was embarrassed when I questioned the result and had no answer, so, I went to find the four judges.

I was correct in that one woman judging, the only one with riding experience, had persuaded the others that many of the movements we had performed with badly done from the equestrian point.
One couple, ballroom dancers in their day, told me that they had wanted us to win.

This woman showed me the marks awarded and as we had gone third the marks for that ride were higher but she told me that was the PC ride so, I know it was a fix.

What made me so angry was that it was a let down for the children. I could have punched that woman, she knew that I knew it was fixed and it turned out her two nieces were riding in the PC ride, which no one knew at the time.

So, I said I would not do it again. We had put a lot of time and money into getting it all ready.
The following May I was asked if the kids would perform in front of Princess Ann at Carisbrooke Castle, on the bowling green as part of a youth celebration. Just the horses and not the foot dancers.

The day was beautiful. I had had to bring in a young TB straight off the track to replace my horse which was a leader as he had a bad fall the day before.
The kids were all mounted and waiting to ride into the arena in the dry moat. The Scouts marching band was playing and I asked the bandmaster that they were not playing as they left the arena - they finished with a drum crescendo and when I looked down the only thing I could see of my riders was a button hole flower! The ponies had all taken off!
They came into the ring and the TB took one look at the audience, all 4,000 of them and thought 'racing' and set off at a twee canter. Had Roy done anything but just sit very quietly Copper would have taken off so there they were jogging slowly whilst Cop was cantering more or less on the spot. Then he settled after a bit but they were way behind with the music. I was in a panic that the tape would run out. I have never felt so useless as there was nothing I could do.
Then I realised that they were in time with the music and all was well.
They lined up for their finish and just as they all bowed so the audience applauded. Horses were all over the place not expecting the noise from behind.

They did me proud. WHat, in my panic, I didn't realise was that they missed out two movements to put them back with the music. I do love children that can think for themselves!

It was one of the proudest moments of my life.

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post #1012 of 29438 Old 03-22-2012, 07:37 AM
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Foxhunter. I am really enjoying your stories. I am sure knowing that competition was rigged would have made me very angry. It is so much work and money to get a good drill together. I have spent 80 bucks this week getting to and from practice and paying arena fees....

Here is a picture from a few years ago, this is my old team, the nationally ranked, Ohio Top Hands...

And my daughter, Alicia, riding the hippidrome in a parade

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Last edited by Susan Crumrine; 03-22-2012 at 07:40 AM.
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post #1013 of 29438 Old 03-22-2012, 08:15 AM
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love the drill pics!
CW..any word on the lease? I think this is one of our last days of 80s up here in Michigan and thankfully my day off! Riding with the BO today who I think is getting slightly impatient with me not wanting to canter all day long(geez...just getting used to cantering up the hills!). Personally, I like a nice relaxing trail ride....
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post #1014 of 29438 Old 03-22-2012, 08:46 AM
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Hope you have a good ride today.I ride to relax too & sometimes the canter is just too much.
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post #1015 of 29438 Old 03-22-2012, 10:07 AM
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Foxhunter, the pic of your students was great! It's so awesome that you were invited to perform for Princess Ann, and I know what you mean about the students knowing their drill so well that they put themselves to right with the music. Good for them! They learned so much from this, I'm sure - both the big disappointment in the rigged judging and the "yes, but others knew the true quality of the exhibition" and being singled out and invited to perform later. And, of course, the horsemen's and horsewomen's rule that "if things can spook a horse they will".... ! But it sounds like all turned out well!

Susan C - likewise, what a snazzy drill team!

I love hearing these stories - you have no idea!
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post #1016 of 29438 Old 03-22-2012, 11:07 AM
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Originally Posted by outnabout View Post
"mature" derived from Latin "maturare": developed, ripe....
How can one be developed and ripe without experience??? Which may nor may not but usually requires age. Ahem.... a good number of years!
"developed and ripe" sent my mind straight to the gutter....
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post #1017 of 29438 Old 03-22-2012, 12:20 PM
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Foxhunter - great story! Nothing is as frustrating as knowing the judge marked unfairly. I ride with a girl who is a fabulous rider, but in her age division she rode in the same classes as the judges granddaughter. Now, a 5 yr old on a fat pony is cute, but the equitation is not there yet...guess who got first in every class?

These drill pics are awesome! Would love to see videos of any future drills you all do!

Nine - I'm working on getting the hubby used to the idea that I may need to make that 4 hour drive. I did mention its in the heart of our wine region, that perked up his ears a bit!

My new girth arrived, I get to ride in my new saddle today at my lesson. I don't know why that excites me so much, but it does. Spent last night cleaning my saddles, bridles and boots. I love cleaning tack, its so satisfying, which is so wierd!
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post #1018 of 29438 Old 03-22-2012, 01:31 PM Thread Starter
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Hi With Grace nice that you got your new girth and you are able to
ride with your new saddle

I still have not heard from the lady about the horse

Country Woman

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post #1019 of 29438 Old 03-22-2012, 01:37 PM
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Originally Posted by Country Woman View Post
Hi With Grace nice that you got your new girth and you are able to
ride with your new saddle

I still have not heard from the lady about the horse
So frustrating for you...

Any other lease prospects in your area? Also, if you call around some of the local barns you may find some available leases that aren't listed. Murphy's Law - as soon as you find others to go look at, the first lady is going to call you back

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post #1020 of 29438 Old 03-22-2012, 01:38 PM
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Sorry CW

I will talk to a few people and see what I can find, you need something fairly close to Cloverdale right?
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