So I was pretty happy about midyear standings being the way they are. A 20 point lead in horse is a pretty good gap for an Open Jr. Class. It wouldn't be impossible to catch up at this point, but it would be at least difficult. In the rider category, my lead isn't as much -- just 12 points. You can't get additional sweepstakes points as a rider, so I'll gain 6 points per ride for the remaining four rides of the year. BG will gain the same, unless she sweepstakes again. (To which I'm not holding my breath.)
All BG has to do is stay sound and complete four more rides! I think we might actually pull this off.
In celebration, I did something I haven't done in a while -- went on a good old fashion run.
When I first got BG, all we did was run. We ran the sun up in the morning and the moon up at night. With work and school and trying to use my limited riding time "wisely," running just hasn't made it into the books.
The idea came spontaneously (like all the most fun ideas.) The sun was starting to set, and BG and I were doing groundwork in the front pasture. Groundwork was going fine, but BG was a little lethargic and bored with it all. So I tied my lunge line into reins, swung up bareback, and took off trotting into the twilight.
The first time I asked for a gallop, I didn't request full power. She gave me around 50% of what she could really do. Flying changes around the curves of a woodland trail. Jumped the logs and the banks. When we ran out of trail, I slowed her to a walk and let her catch her breath for a few minutes.
It was getting dark quickly, and we were far from home. We cut through the woods and found ourselves on a flat, grassy stretch on the edge of a broom straw field. It was a mile or so in length, good footing and straight all the way.
I asked BG for a gallop. She struck off at that 50% speed with no problem. So I decided to see what 100% felt like.
Oh my God. I never remember her being so fast. She's in the best shape of her life, so she might actually be faster than I remember. I gripped her mane and didn't breathe the whole run, all the while vaguely wondering how fast I was really going. 35? 40? Who cares. Faster than I've ever been.
It was exhilarating. To feel all that power underneath you. Makes me remember how I fell in love with horses in the first place.
And yes. We got home by dark.