Monday, 6 October 2014

Fairview Fall Finale

This past weekend Koda and I ventured into the world of horse shows and went to a new show in the north, the Fairview Fall Finale.  This is a two day show with the first day being all dressage and the second consisting of flat classes in the morning and hunter/jumper classes in the afternoon.  Due to the travel time, I only did the dressage day and the flat classes since I wanted to get home at a decent hour.  I signed up for Training Test 1 Open along with Open Pleasure, Open Equitation, and Open Show Hack.  

Training Test 1

The first day was a bit crazy as I'd forgotten how long it took to braid and was starting to panic!  Luckily I met a couple of super friendly girls that gave me a hand in that regard and the braid came out half decent.  Sadly, with the braid panic, it ate into my warm-up time and I ended up only having about 5-10 minutes of warm up whereas I really wanted 20.  I had ridden the night before in the arena, so Koda wasn't too looky or spooky plus the dressage ring wasn't dressed up with a ton of flowers or anything, so it was a pretty steady test.  During the test I was consistently thinking "relax, legs on, allow with hands", like a mantra.  The second half of the test felt a ton better than the first, which I think is mostly due to me getting into the groove of riding and Koda responding to the me digging in.  

Once I had finished, I didn't have anything else for that day until the evening, so the hubs and I went into town to run some errands.  When we got back, I picked up my test and surprise surprise, Koda and I got second place, with a 7 for rider position and another 7 for harmony between horse and rider!  All of those clinics this past year are paying off, woot!!!!

He looks so cute here
The next day was a lot more relaxed as I had braided the night before and was determined not to be caught with that time crunch again.  I had plenty of time for warm up and we went in for our first class.  It was a pretty big one (nine horses!) and it was making me a tad anxious.  Koda and I don't have our walk-canter transitions confirmed, so those were a struggle in these classes.  I kept getting tense and pushing too hard for the transition whenever we had to canter, causing Koda to pick up the wrong lead.  Bad rider moment.  

Attitude in the tail flip

Square halt, love it
In the equitation class, I was SO thankful we used to do these types of classes at my old lesson barn in Ontario where you had to ride a pattern specific with cones.  The pattern was sit trot from cone A to cone B (think X), rising trot circle to the right (back to X) rising trot circle to the left (back to X) canter right lead to cone C, halt at cone C.  For those who don't ride equitation, you MUST ride on the proper side of the cones or else you are eliminated.  In this show, they didn't eliminate people, but it was explained at the end of the class.  I didn't get the right lead canter off the left circle (darn), but surprise surprise again, since I was on the proper side of the cones and had equal sided circles, we got another second place!  Plus we did have a kick arse canter-walk transition right in front of the judge before line up which never hurts either ;)  


Show Hack
The last class was a tough one, another big one with nine horses in it.  For some reason I was expecting this class to be like a Road Hack class... HA!  For those who show hunters, you know this isn't true.  The show hack class is more for those horses who can give HUGE changes in gait, collected trot, extended trot, collected canter, extended canter.  Now, we all know Koda doesn't really have an extended trot, but we gave it our all.  It was a fun class to ride, but was very tough.  I was so proud of my boy, he gave me everything he could in that class.  Next time out, we may try and aim for the road hack (if it's offered) instead.

 All in all, I had a great weekend and learned some more about Koda and I!  We aren't as "out to lunch" as I thought, and do stack up to others out there.  We CAN do it and do it well, just need to keep on polishing and perfecting those issues and we'll continue to improve.

Such a handsome man


  1. He is super cute! Glad you had fun and congrats on the progress!

  2. You two look great! Glad it was a success for you :)

  3. Thanks guys! They may continue and create a series out of it, depending on entries. I'm hoping it does as it's closer than other venues :)
    Need more mileage in the show ring!