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SMDA Recognized Show - July 14, 2019

Ellie and I tried her first recognized show in July.  It was quite an interesting experience; I don't know why this has been such a weird year, but sadly it has!

I signed up to ride Training 2 and 3, paying the little extra to have T3 count as a qualifying score.  It didn't really matter since we cannot do enough rated shows this year to qualify for a USDF award, as I want to do horse trials and other things on weekends when the rated shows are scheduled.  But I wanted it to "count" just in case because you never know lol!

I didn't get any media as I went by myself.  Training 2 went great!  Ellie warmed up well and we had a really solid test.  She was calm and rideable, and I honestly thought we had done quite well!  The judge didn't agree and we scored a 62.241%, for third in a class of five.  Not a terrible score, but it seemed lower than the performance.  I figured it was just a difference between normally doing schooling shows and this was rated, so the sco…

Canter Progress

Like any Standardbred, it has taken time and patience with Snappy to develop her canter.  She is physically able to canter but what is holding her back is her mental block about the gait.  She raced until she was twelve years old, and I even trained and raced her under saddle (at a trot), so it was quite ingrained in her mind to never canter, just trot as fast as possible, even under saddle. She is honestly scared of the canter, as she was trained as a young horse that any time she moved into that gait, she was hit in the mouth hard with the reins/bit.  

Last summer I wrote about her current canter, which wasn't much as I wasn't really pushing the issue.  Back then, her left lead was stronger, her upwards transitions were horrid, and she could barely hold her right lead to go an almost full 2o m. circle.  After the canter, she forgot how to trot, bend, or relax and I had to go directly from a canter to a walk for her brain to settle down.




Thankfully, much has changed so far this year.  While her left lead is still stronger, she can canter 3-5 times around a 20 m. circle now in both directions without issue.  I would say her transitions are still pretty explosive, but she can now come back to a trot without losing her shit.  And her trot afterwards is pretty decent.  I just need to clean up the transitions and the first 2-3 strides and I think we could handle an Intro C test for sure, maybe a Training 1.  

The following three photos are an accurate representation of our current trot-canter transitions.  She throws her head, leaps into the gait, and then relaxes.



Current upwards explosion, errr, transition



 Then she decides to trust me and to trust herself, and she settles down into this.
Ohhhh, I CAN canter like a normal horse!


Her trot work after the canter is improving in quality as well.  Hopefully, it will only be a matter of more time, more patience, and more confidence before her canter comes together into a dressage worthy gait!  I'd like to think we could try an Intro C test this fall, but maybe I will wait until next spring.  It all depends on Snappy.  We shall see!  :-)





Comments

  1. Aw what a good girl! It must fee great to see her finally trusting herself to reach out and try!

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