So, Sunday we trailered back up to QMS for a hunter show that marks the beginning of the Cowichan Winter Series. And how did it go? Well…
We warmed up pretty well, and then went into the indoor for a brief warm-up over the fences. Indoors is much tighter, twisty and the jumps come up a lot faster. We had a pretty ok warm-up, with some disunited canter and a bungled last jump in the line.
My courses were pretty easy, and I was feeling ok until…I went in for my course and got a refusal at the second fence–an oxer on the diagonal. They were pretty oxer-happy!
Picked up my canter and re-did it fine, then continued on course with 1 or two ugly fences. The next course went alright but it wasn’t fabulous. Then it was time for the equitation course, and I was freaking NAILING it! Until…I got the old ‘slam on the brakes and pop over from a standstill’ from Oats, and then we demolished the fence. And then proceeded to next diagonal oxer and performed the same awkward maneuver- and I jumped off, because I was SO not into having him leap over it from a standstill AGAIN.
WTF? So….What the heck?! Why do I fall off at horse shows? My show nerves clearly got the best of me, and all I could focus on was finishing the course. UGH. That means racing through it as fast as I possibly could.
We had entered the flat class and I was kind of not looking forward to it. To my ultimate surprise Oats was so good! He was honest, he was kind and he was so chilled out about it, I was shocked. This was the pony who had been excused from EVERY flat class I had entered him in due to bad behaviour- bucking, rearing, running backwards, everything.
He was a perfect gentleman. We placed third out of a fairly large field of 15 or so. So, our 9th show wasn’t really a triumph for jumping (man, I haven’t done that poorly at a show, ever?) but he really surprised me and was great for our flat class. Funny eh? The thing I’m better at (jumping) is kind of a disaster and the thing I’m afraid of (flat class) was perfect. How odd!
Ohh well, you win some, you lose some.