Countdown to APHA World Show... - Page 9

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Countdown to APHA World Show...

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    10-20-2011, 09:52 PM
Been a nice week for Whiskey though it is hard not to get frustrated working with showmanship and her setting her feet - she does not want to stand square,and when she eventually gets it she cocks a hip and doesn't stand on both hinds. I have to keep reminding myself to go slow. Her pivots we are working on 90 degree turns with her keeping that hind right planted and moving that left forward at the end - she's getting that more often than not, so we will start working on 1/2 turns soon.

I have been using drawreins this week to keep her head more steady at lope departures as she wants to really use her head and neck. I am really trying to drive her up and lift up and get that impulsion from her hocks forward - she is getting better but that all takes months to get it right. Since Worlds is now two weeks away we are just going to get as far as we can without pushing and frustrating us both. I make sure to keep those reins totally loose as often as possible and her jog is getting relaxed and a little nicer - she's not going to have that pleasure horse pit pat jog but I think we can be slow legged for her - and that's all we can hope for.

Scooby is pacing, pawing, and generally going nuts - he has until Tuesday morning in his stall, and I am as impatient as he is - I am dying to take him out and trot him and see how he looks, but I am holding myself back and waiting for the vet. It's hard waiting though...

Getting closer - :)
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    10-23-2011, 05:44 PM
Today was a great day... I lunged her with draw reins for 15 minutes, just mostly at the jog, which is getting really nice actually, then a few lope transitions. Then worked on counter canters and then a lead change back to correct lead, with lots of jogging after each set to keep her (and me) from frustration - she wants to overthink the lopes and gets flustered. Not today though, she was smooth and kept pretty steady both in speed and in frame - I was able to keep the draw reins loose and draping most of the day - she did great so we were done after about 45 minutes. I'll get her back out tonight for showmanship practice.

Yesterday Kellie did poles and barrels while I watched and her poles are getting really good! She rides with a S hack and a tie down so no mouth contact - she is doing flying lead changes between the poles... I was really pleased to see how well Kellie has been doing with her. I was a little worried about Whiskey being ridden twice a day but she is responding really well - she's fit, happy, and looking great!

Scooby is getting much better in his stall about her comings and goings. Vet comes on Tuesday so we are very anxious and impatient to find out if he is still sore.
    10-25-2011, 10:39 PM

Scooby is good to go!!

Farrier and Vet came out this morning and Scooby looked pretty good trotting out, went bucking and kicking a few times, but was overall about 80 percent improvement from last visit.

It was pretty interesting to watch the vet and farrier decide on how best to shoe him, as he seemed like he was wanting to land on the inside of his hoof when trotting instead of his heel and that may be why he came up sore three weeks ago. He looks like he is toeing out a bit and throwing that leg out... so he got a cool new shoe that has a rail that screws in so you can add different size wedges to either side until you get it right...

Our farrier put on his shoes and BAM! 90 percent improvement, he still short strides a bit, but our vet says that is "just Scooby" and his conformation as opposed to a lameness.

So with the vet's blessing, Kellie rode today and after a good warmup she even loped the poles and he was happy, smooth, and ears forward!

Whiskey did western today - I had used the draw reins the last week to get her to understand how to keep her head level for lope transitions, so today we took off the draw reins and her head was so much better. I can now officially say she has a western jog and I am getting pretty confident about the show - we are going to have a great time!!
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File Type: jpg scoobysbetter.jpg (55.2 KB, 40 views)
    10-27-2011, 06:06 PM
Yesterday it got very cold and snowed through the day so both Scooby and Whiskey stayed in - this morning I let them out and they both took off around the pasture... I caught Whiskey in the act:

Since they are out playing, I took stock of the trip... we still need a trailer tire spare, and I need lessons on how to change it. I figure the odds of blowing a trailer tire is remote, but with our luck I am not going to get caught in the middle of nowhere with no spare.

Horses have all their paperwork in order, I need to make sure to put their folder in the truck! Truck is in tip-top shape after a oil change and check a few weeks ago. It's spare is good and in place.

I need to figure out my horsemanship outfit, so will ride in both my choices on Saturday and we'll decide which one then. I need a plain black shirt for my speed events on Whiskey, so have to pick that up Saturday as well. English stuff is ready to go, and today I bought some big plastic boxes to put everything in...

Confirmed with the braider that she will be available to do Whiskey's mane and tail before her Hunt Seat Eq class, and need to put her tail in the trailer - it's something we hardly ever use, so I figure we'll forget :)

I ordered a new english saddle pad with pockets for numbers, mine doesn't have them.

We'll load everything after our final home ride next Wednesday and then leave for Texas at about 3 am and hope to be there by 6 pm. We are getting really close now! 8 days out!
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Scoobysnow.jpg (67.4 KB, 35 views)
File Type: jpg Whiskeysnow.jpg (77.1 KB, 34 views)
    10-29-2011, 09:28 PM
Today was a crappy day

First my husband and I spent all morning doing a trailer tire exercise. He showed me how to get the tire off, then we took it to the tire store so we could order a tire and wheel so I have a ready to go spare for the trip. Then I put the tire back on and he tightened it down. It took a while, but now I feel better about that.

Then we went shopping and did errands so by the time I got home it was 430 and getting darker. I wanted to do a test run with my horsemanship outfit and use the saddle I am borrowing for the show.

So I got my outfit on, got the saddle (OMG it has some BLING!!) and gave it a try. Very different from my close contact, worn down and comfy crates. Harder to cue her for sure. Had Kellie record me. She was completely disinterested, which pissed me off partly because I am getting anxious about the show and partly because I am spending a fortune on both of us going and having a great time and the least she could do is help on the more boring aspects of the show - like selecting the right outfit... ...

So she recorded me riding in the lavender and white showmanship shirt, white hat, black chaps and lavender pad then turned for the house. I asked her to send my hubby out so he could see. After 15 minutes (house 2 minutes away) he wanders out. I ask how it looks, he says "looks good" and spends the next 3 minutes kicking dirt, watching the clouds, calling to the cat - everything but watch or give constructive criticism... very irritating!

Then I got mad, told him to forget it, and headed in. Got all the tack off, came in, sat down to watch the video and I am about 100 feet away so you can't see how the outfit looks at all! UGH!

I blew up at both of them and told them I wished they could be a little more helpful and supportive as I am anxious already at taking a three year old down and competing at this level. I just want to make sure every detail I can control is taken care of, and can't do it alone.

Then I felt bad because my husband could care less about horses, and did spend the morning getting the trailer ready. Kellie did go this morning and get the saddle for me, so they are helping. I need to go apologize a little, I think.

On a good note, Whiskey did seem to get the feel of the saddle and I will ride in it for the next week to improve on that. It really is fancy!
    11-05-2011, 10:27 PM
So we have had a crazy week - we are here in Texas showing, and it has been a blast!

We left Colorado springs at midnight, got into Fort Worth at 4 pm. Yep, 16 hours. We pulled over in a little Texas gas station at 5 am and slept for an hour - we were getting tired.

We showed today for our first classes.

Whiskey showed in Barrels, Stake Race, and Hunt Seat Eq.
We got 4 out of 5 in Barrels, 3 out of 5 in stake (1 sec from reserve), and 3 out of 3 in Hunt Seat Eq - but one judge placed me second and since I got the wrong diagonal and broke gait on the rail, I didn't deserve a higher place.

Our Barrels I didn't push her enough, so we were pretty slow, the last place person knocked down a barrel. Our stake race I was determined to push her, and we did really good! She ran hard, turned well, and we were only a second off the reserve champ... not bad for a three year old.

Our problem was Whiskey was worried that Scooby wasn't with her, they were calling for each other all morning - which was maddening. She actually called for him while we were on the rail in our Hunt Seat class - she has never done that before... she was very preoccupied with it, and not paying attention at all. My pattern was very clean other than the wrong diagonal, which I corrected in one stride (but that was still a deal breaker), and the second place horse wasn't as clean (really messed up her pivot)... so I think the rail was important, and she was fussy, calling, and then broke from the canter ... that killed us in the final placings...

Scooby and Kellie had a great day. They did Junior Barrels and Open Stake Race - Junior Barrels she had a five second penalty for losing her hat, and ended up 4 out of 4, but she would have gotten third by time.

Open Stake she really pushed him and they got 6th out of 11 open horses! And they were fast, fast, fast - she missed top 5 by .2 seconds - we were very happy with that showing. The leaders were multiple world champions and we were just hoping that Kellie and Scooby could sneak into the top ten - she ended up earning her right to be there!

Tomorrow I show Novice Ammy Barrels and Poles on Scooby, and Kellie shows Poles on both Scooby and Whiskey. We are having a wonderful time and are going to get lots of pictures tomorrow.

Then Monday I show horsemanship, which I will get my butt kicked in - she isn't slow enough yet for horsemanship, but we are going to do our best.
    11-06-2011, 08:19 PM
Today was a great day, for the most part.

I started the day with Scooby in Novice Amt Barrels - and I did pretty good, I held Scooby back because he is pretty quick and I didn't want to overshoot the first barrel... but I held him back too much - our second barrel and third were very clean, mostly because I had him too slow. We ended up with a 5th place.

Then Kellie went with Scooby in Open Poles and really turned it on - she couldn't be in Novice Amt because she's still technically a Youth, so had to show in Open. She ended up 6th in Poles, which was pretty amazing - her run was beautiful. Her time was faster than any of the Novice Amt riders, so if she would have been able to compete in Novice Ammy, and got that time, she would have won.

She took Whiskey in Solid Paint Bred Poles, but Whiskey dodged in between the poles and got disqualified, which was very disappointing and unexpected. So we brushed it off, and continued on.

I took Scooby into Poles, and had a very scary ride. I let him go as we shot out of the gate, but then got my rein tangled with his mane, so I had no control on the left side of his hackamore. We flew down the line and I sat and pulled right, to start weaving back down and he turned beautifully, but I wasted time trying to get my hand back - we then did our weaves cleanly and he swapped his leads great and we turned for home. I lost my stirrup but got it back before the gate. I was completely out of control, but got a 4th in the class.

What surprised me was how scared I was riding him. He is just too much for me, too fast and strong. I was happy to get the placing, but truth is, he easily could have won the class, I am just not a good enough rider to let him, and got in his way.

So Kellie and I ended the day with a 4th, 5th, and 6th out of 4 classes.

Tomorrow is horsemanship, and I am pretty nervous as she isn't ready to be in the class, so we'll just try to have a clean pattern.

We looked at the show pictures from yesterday, and a couple are very good. I am looking forward to seeing the ones from today. After horsemanship we'll take our pictures under the world show sign and finish our time here with many top fives and a nice jacket, a top five buckle, and pictures - more than surpassing our goals!
    11-09-2011, 08:57 PM
Well, we are back in Colorado now. Our horsemanship pattern was surprisingly good - it was clean on all elements - just too fast and not collected enough, which we knew would kill us in a class of world quality pleasure horses. We did get 3rd in the class, only 4 showed, but we were cleaner than the last horse so I was really pleased with that.

We took our pictures, but they won't be back for a couple weeks - we had a really great time and look forward to returning so Kellie can make a go at the Novice Speed titles - she and Scooby showed they have the times to get it done. I also look forward to taking Whiskey once she has more time under her belt.

We had a great time and I am so happy we had the chance to go down and experience it!

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