The past few weeks I have largely focused on riding. My first recognized show is in 2 weeks and I've kicked it into gear to prepare.
The last schooling show was abysmally awful. Cholula warmed up beautifully - she was sharp and responsive, she cantered when asked, and overall she was quite lovely to ride. Unfortunately, there was a big wait between the end of our warm up and our first test, and that wait did us in.
I had just a few minutes to work with her before our test, and the horse that I rode earlier had apparently taken a vacation. Both tests were big fights that I lost so badly my trainer hopped on afterward for a quick come to jesus.
Needless to say, I questioned everything at that point, especially my decision to show at a "real" show in June.
2 days later we had a clinic with another trainer, and I have to say it was exactly what both of us needed. I was worried the clinic would be just as unproductive as the show, but the trainer taught us some new warm up exercises that have been the ticket to getting her attention on me. We start with these before every ride, and the amount of time I spend getting her in front of the leg has lessened with each session.
In addition, my trainer has been riding her every Monday. She will also be riding Cholula at the show - first level! I am terrified but my last few rides have been stellar so hopefully we're on the right track. Today we had a nice long trail ride that involved a lot of galloping hills...by the last stretch her canter was smooth, easy, and steady.
Here are some photos I took 2 weeks ago of my trainer and Cho:
Cho trying to grab the bit...sigh.
Finishing the ride with a gallop up my favorite hill
Cho looking quite pleased with herself
I DO have a few new things to photograph and post as well, so stay tuned!