Saturday, August 7, 2010

Spit N' Polish

On a whim, I entered the Union County Fair Open Horse show today. It had a sidesaddle class - so I was sold on going to it. (Even if I got there to enter just that class alone, I was going.) But, I figured if we were making the trip over the mountain to LaGrande, might as well do a few more classes when we got there as well...

There's been a really low number of schooling and practice shows in our area this year. Hardly any at all. I haven't been to a horse show in a few years, so I wasn't quite too sure how things would go today. (I would've preferred to get more practice in at some smaller schooling shows before going to an open show, but there just aren't any around.) But, it proved to be a useful tool to get my horses used to public places and experience new things. The carnival was setup and there was lots of noises and commotion and strange horses and running children..... But my two little backyard troopers took things in stride. I was quite proud of the girls! Suzette has only been to one schooling show as a baby yearling, and Nettie the mustang has never been to a show in her entire life. Fun stuff!

All in all, everything went really well and we came home with a few ribbons for our efforts.

Suzette winning 1st place in light breed mares 4 yrs. and older.

The judge thought that she was cute, and we did okay with our showmanship. We entered the green horse and green rider showmanship halter classes and got two third places. I messed up the pattern just a little bit on the green rider, and Suzette wasn't quite as polished on her haunch turns for the green horse class. But, we did our best.
Walking the pattern. For a young horse she did really well and stayed very calm, something we've worked diligently on no matter where we go. I'm guessing that by the next show we'll probably be doing some saddle classes together, hopefully.
Nettie and I in the sidesaddle class. The judge loved it. She had never had anybody in a sidesaddle class before, so we gave it a go. Nettie nailed both loping leads too! Woot!!!! God, was I ever proud of her for that... We were sporting the old single post 1905 western Congle, made in Portland, OR. The seat's a bit beat-up on it, but it's still sound enough to ride in.

We had lots of questions from fellow showers about the saddle, and if it was a hard thing to ride. My reply was - it just takes practice.

Folks have gotta love the sidesaddle classes and support them, or else they will be dropped from shows. I was really surprised to see it listed at his show, and I went specifically just to ride in that class. Come hell or high water, I was going to be there to ride it!

Nettie doesn't have the greatest headset for sidesaddle, but she's learning. I just need to keep at it with her. It's hard to keep her squeezed with the leg to round her frame up to get the head down when there's nothing on the other side to squeeze with..... But she's improving every time we ride aside, and that's what matters.
Our blue ribbon. Not too bad for a scrubby little rangebred mustang! It's hard to believe that I use this horse for endurance too. Today was the first time that she's ever had a curb bit in her mouth, and she handled it very well. I usually just ride with a bosal everywhere.
Next was green horse and green rider english pleasure, and we gave it a go. There were five entries in the first class and four in the next, and we placed second both times. I really need to work on my posture when I'm riding english. It's pretty obvious from the photos that I always look like I'm riding western no matter what.......something I need to work further on in the future.
But sometimes riding in a western position isn't always a bad thing.....

This was a funny shot above. The judge asked us to halt from a canter, and Nettie did a sliding stop like a reining horse! I had to laugh. It was a hoot. Craig was giggling too. It's probably a good thing that I had my feet forward and toes out, or I would've been eating an english mane sandwich.
Our second place english ribbons.
Last, we entered the green horse and green rider western pleasure classes. Our first class we did great in, winning a first place out of six entries. But, in the last class Nettie was getting hot and tired and bumbled her leads a little bit. We got a fourth place. She let me know that it was time to pack the trailer and head on home.
Overall, a very fun day!

No comments:

Post a Comment