Mav continues to grow in confidence daily. He is figuring out this dressage horse life and embracing it. And the naps. He still loves naps. Who doesn't really? The day has arrived for the two day show. Mav is excited and is impatient to leave, err, he is napping as usual.
Warm up was a million times better than last show. It was less busy over in the trailer parking as many people stayed the whole weekend. We had day paddocks but hauled in and out since we are only 10 minutes away and I like him to go home when possible. He was much more open and forward warming up with limited staring at things. We call that a win!
The pictures from warm up are dark looking as we had serious wildfire smoke here this week. The interior of BC is burning and it is horrifying and scary. We are all doing a rain dance. It was starting to clear by Saturday but you can still see it in the air in the pictures. Warm ups were shorter than normal and we all monitored our horses, but they seemed to be handling it well.
Inside now for the test. He is reaching for the bit so much more now and he is relaxed and happy.
Our free walk scored an 8 on Sat and I think 7.5 on Sunday. I am thankful for all the work Amazing Coach has done with us on this. He actually has a really nice walk, but he wanted to bottle up and take teeny steps under saddle.
This canter depart I think the comment was "laboured". It was a little I guess. I see where I need to sharpen those transitions up and get him to sit more into the canter. I also worked on sitting better in the canter. I noticed on the last show video that I was coming out of the tack on the up part of the stride. I think I have fixed that mostly. It is a work in progress as always.
This one I thought was better considering it is out of the previously scary corner. Still needs to be sharper, but also a win. That side of the ring was not an issue at all this weekend.
Finally the stretchy trot.
This was our first attempt to stretch at a show (previous show). It was not very stretchy at all.
This show, in the second test, he finally stretched a bit! I was very happy with him for that! The judge thought our circle was not very good, but steering AND stretching will have to wait for next show. I think she gave us a 7 but in my head it was a 10 all things considered.
The Pro Photographer arrived just in time to catch my test! Yay! I am basically always good for buying pictures. Good for me and for Mav's social media, bad for my bank account. This is not the most flattering picture, but it's stretching so I love it.
As I exited the ring, groundcrew told me photographer was there. I flashed my best pearly whites making for a fun picture. Amazing coach was trying to talk to me about my test. I was posing for the camera...
It takes a village and these are some of mine! Amazing Coach, Super Husband, part of Excellent Ground Crew and keeper of my old timer/good friend. Mav thinks the attention is the best thing ever and is learning to pose for the camera.
After his test both days, with a couple of hours between him and Uncle Kanje's test, he hung out in a paddock. Clearly, he was perfectly happy wherever he was put and did not care even when he was alone out there. This should not come as a surprise since he has never really cared about other horses. He likes them. But he is fine without them too.
Saturday Training test 3 we scored 75.69, Sunday we felt our test was even better and scored 69.48. Different judges see different things! We were 3rd both days so we were right in the mix regardless. Classes were open and mixed with Ammy and Pros so I was thrilled!
We were invited to go pick up awards the next day and it was a nice surprise to find out we were Reserve Champion Adult Amateur Training Level and had a high score (rider) age award! He even won a patent leather halter and lead rope (in his colour!). While the classes were open, the division and age awards were AA so that was a nice surprise and bonus!
We have decided to just go for it and entered him in the Regionals Gold Show at our local really amazing international venue. He has been there once, but was only in the indoor and he was only slightly started at that point. If he is overwhelmed by the atmosphere, I can always scratch his classes and hang out. But regardless, we need to get there at some point and now is as good a time as ever to get him acclimatized to the place.
So he is official. He has a national horse ID and is on his Highway to the Danger Zone, wherever that may lead us.