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- - trotting circles at the start cone (http://www.horseforum.com/horse-showmanship/trotting-circles-start-cone-131812/)
trotting circles at the start cone
Ok, so I went to the State 4H show a few weeks ago and I really screwed up in my showmanship pattern. It started out amazing all through the line up he was in a perfect "hunter stance", but right as I was about to start my pattern I think a helicopter flew over cause he started freaking out cause he hates helicopters. He trotted small circles around me for so long I got dizzy! I was about to ask to be excused when he stopped so I decided to at least give the pattern a try. It ended up being a mess cause we had to trot really tight turns and he was trotting a million miles an hour. I kept having to pull him back and had to circle him at one point. The inspection went ok, I smiled and got him as square as I could and he did good keeping still during it, but got a little excited at the end and started walking off. He backed up good but did his pivot on the forehand instead of the haunches. Then we trotted out of the ring. I did better than some people (a few got zeros) I got a 45. I feel ok about it, I just want to know what do you do in those situations? What does the judge think?
Judges know that things can set a horse off. He judged you on how well you showed your horse. Since shows are quite stressful for horses I spent all my time with my horse assuring her comfort. My presence was the only familiar thing she had. When out of the stall I'd ask her to move her feet in different directions, just a step or two and stand, keeping it low key but keeping her attention on me, not a rehearsal of the class. If a horse gets yanked on prior to the class it will often react during the class expecting the same. My gelding reacted to a low flying helicopter by cantering sideways down the entire ring during a command class. We'd have won hands down if that had been what the judge wanted to see. Beautifully executed.
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