Loch Moy 1, Training 2
I shouldn't have worried. He arrived at the show grounds and acted like a seasoned professional from the first moment. Of course, I did not. It's been a minute since I've shown recognized. (Holy cow, it's been exactly 2 years. This is the last show Pig and I ever did.) My timing is very off, and I ended up running to the ring as the bell rang for my ride time. How stupidly unprofessional of me.
Thank god for the awesome volunteers at Loch Moy, though. Those ladies sent another rider in my place and slotted me right into a scratch later on. Bast and I had one Training Level Test 2 in which to warm up, and off we went.
|I think the warm up was effective, though.|
The bell rang after a walk around the spooky side of the ring, and we trotted right in. Somehow I remembered the whole test, and Bast was so tuned in it flowed nicely. Other than flubbing the first halt (I took my left leg off, and we went very left into the halt.), I was super happy with the whole thing.
|Did not flub the final halt, though. We learned our lesson on the first one.|
When it comes to improvements, obviously there are a few. I'm very happy with how quiet Bast was in the mouth in this test. He had moments of gaping, mostly in the second half of the first centerline, but as long as I held his hand with my seat and legs, he was content to quietly mouth and go forward in a lovely outline.
That said, I couldn't had better geometry. I need to ride more tests in the small ring. Bast is fine, and will go wherever I point him, but I'm too ready to make my 20m circles 15m right now. Perhaps I should test ride on Pig for more practice without burning out the baby.
|His head looks so dainty here, wtf.|
The medium walk was weak. We've been struggling to relax into contact in the medium walk for awhile now, and it showed here. Bast's anxieties are less obvious in the more forward gaits, so he tends to waver in the walk.
The judge wanted to see more impulsion, which is fair. I was very pleased I didn't push Bast past his rhythm in most of this test, however. The impulsion will come as we continue to develop, so I'm not worried.
His canter felt like a highlight to me in this test. He picked up his leads nicely and quietly. He had a lovely rhythm in both directions, and was very obedient. Right now, I can't ask for much more. As we continue to develop, though, I'd like to see straightness become more accessible in the gait.
|A more uphill tendency would be nice, too. I am pretty sure I'm blocking that, though.|
Basically test one was more than I could have imagined, and I am so lucky my friends helped get my time-management-impaired self to the ring on time. It helped that coats had been waived, so I only had to get half dressed. But my boots would not zip over my sweaty breeches, which didn't help me speed my way to the ring. See if you can notice my right boot slowly work itself more open as the ride progressed. Ugh.
After this test I only had a half an hour before my Training 3 test, so I opted to hop off but stay ringside. I tried to zip my boots again and borrowed a phone to learn my tests (what?! I'm only capable of memorizing for a few moments.), and asked my family to bring me my jacket and stock tie. Even if we went off course in T3, we were going to look nice.
|To be continued...|