What a fantastic day Moo and I had at the Grafton Riding Club Dressage Championships on the weekend!
I had originally wanted to enter Freddy, but he is still lame on one hoof from his hoof rot and needs a few more weeks with Dr Grass and Dr Time!
He will come good soon and be back into his competition. I had such high hopes for Freddy at this Championship and I even thought we might have had a fair chance at getting a really good score, but it wasn’t to be and my horses welfare is always more important than competing.
Meanwhile Moo, who has never competed Preliminary before, was my partner in crime on the day, and wasn’t he an amazing partner!
He loaded and travelled well to the event, and was happily chewing on his hay whilst I started on his rosettes.
I will say though, rosettes are not my strong point, in fact my rosettes are downright woeful. I often wonder if I will ever get better at them.
I then took Moo for a walk in the morning sun. It was 3 degree’s when I arrived and so we had rugs and jackets on while Moo had a graze and enjoyed the warmth. It was so beautiful. I stood there feeling so lucky to be with my horse at such a lovely time of day and I took it all in.
I had no expectations for the day except to have a good time and a day out competing. There were 23 entries in each class so all I wanted was to give Moo the chance to experience a big event and all of the distractions that come with that; other horses, loud speakers, cars, dogs, children etc
He was so calm the whole day and even at times when he was a little spooked by something (such as another horse rearing) he was able to relax with a simple touch of my hand to his neck and a few reassuring words. I was so proud of him!!
We had a 2 hour break between our two tests which can be hard on a green horse, especially an ex racehorse that is used to racing once and then being taken home.
Moo handled it so well and he was committed to working with me the whole day. We had Preliminary 1:1 at 9:40am and Preliminary 1:2 at 11.40am. The first test rode well, he was calm throughout, a little above the bit at times having a sticky beak at things in the trot. I let him look around, I didn’t fight it and try to keep him in a frame and I beleive this worked in my favour.
Preliminary 1:1 He got 7’s for his canter work and a 7 for his long walk! Such a good effort.
We ended up with a final score of 62.88% and equal fourth place! I can’t stop smiling.
Preliminary 1:2 we ended up with a score of 56.22% and eighth place. I am still so proud of this score as we had a horse in the arena beside us kicking out and carrying on throughout the test. In the future, my Mr Potato Head will be able to stay the course and not be distracted by such things, but for now it is all a learning curve, lots of smiles and ribbons a plenty.
I am so lucky to have such a great horse and be able to have happy days with him. I look forward to the future with Moo. He is my unicorn. He has pulled up well after the competition with no pulled muscles or injuries and for that I am grateful. I am currently looking for our next competition to enter!
Happy Riding and Keep Smiling