Monday, May 5, 2008

Been to the Horse Show

I spent the last three days at a horse show. AQHA with one day of NRCHA classes thrown in.
We had to drive back and forth each day instead of staying because we had a mare about to foal and a precious package of fancy sperm held up in Tennessee.
I had two horses to school in reining, and my bosses brought a couple of theirs. They rode the stud that stands at the ranch, and an out of shape, but very hot and physical mare, that was just starting to compete again after two years off.
Since all of us were going to school our horses, the pressure was off and we could really enjoy ourselves. It didn't hurt that the weather was beautiful and we were at my favorite arena.
These are some of the things I saw.
Lots of colored horses. If you think you're adding to the value of your horse by breeding for color, forget it. Shining Spark and Hollywood Dunnit have dumped TONS of color into the show pen. Their talent is what made them leading sires. Their color has flooded the reining and cowhorse world. A blood bay is a rare delight.
I saw my first cremello competing in an AQHA show. He sucked. His hind legs were so bowed I can guarantee he'll have soundness issues. Of course he was a stud.
Lots of cowboys riding around in the warm up pen with their babies (as in the fruit of their loins) tucked in between them and the saddle horn. Cute look Dads, but a REALLY stupid trend. Cow horses are notoriously hot. There are SO MANY THINGS WRONG with this my head spins.
Moms, I don't care if it's the only way you can get them to babysit, make them stop.
Some beautiful, wonderful runs. There is a mare I admire greatly. Her name is Tsunami Lena.
She was in the middle of her spins, and with each rotation she would prick her ears and try to peek into the cow pen. How cool is that.
I counted five extremely lame horses that were competing. Only one was whistled off. When the horse and rider exited the arena I heard the rider say, "That's what I get for forgetting my spurs."
I stopped and watched a halter class for awhile. I actually saw some halter horses that looked like they could do something useful. Is this a sign?
An idiot on a very tiny two year old. He was riding it in the warm up pen. A cowhorse warm up pen is very fast and intense. The two year old was skittering all over in a mad panic. Of course he had great big spurs, a very heavy saddle, and the horse was bitted, so he smashed it into compliance in no time. This is how cowboys get a bad name. That man was not a cowboy. He was a dumb ass.
A lively Kentucky Derby party turned to dead silence. The show announcer let everyone know that Eight Belles had died. There were a lot of cowboy hats doffed in respect. There were some tears.
Beautiful horses, beautiful rides.
An old rancher showing in cowhorse. His horses were hairy and lean. He wasn't polished or slick, didn't have a chance in hell of placing, but man, could he ride.
Anyway, our schooling was quiet, calm successful.
I had a wonderful reining pattern the last day. My mare was everything I could have hoped for. We flew through our pattern sure and true. The arena faded away, the judge was gone, my fellow competitors a distant thought. Each maneuver was magic, the pattern was a world in itself.
I realize I have a great horse. The best I have ridden. She is sound. She is sane. We are partners on this show scene. She reminds me why I show. Why I train. Who I am.

5 comments:

The1CowgirlsEnvy said...

I'm glad you and your stunning girl put in a good ride! I've got my first one this weekend, I have to put on a barrel racing clinic and then that night I'm going to a jackpot and hopefully bring home all their money! :)

So do tell, do you think the "Ben Cartwright" strategy work?

mugwump said...

Yes. Her forward drive was totally clean compared to the show before. She was more confidant in the arena too. Now I have to see if it helps the schizoid repair job I'm riding. She's bred to death,got pushed too hard, and is a mess. I'm hitting the trail hard omn her. Good luck with that jackpot!

Justaplainsam said...

Dont you just love horse shows! The ones who 'think' they know it all compared to the ones that do know it all but would never admit it.

Good luck at your next shows :)

Cooper's Fan Girl said...

Take some pictures next time!

mugwump said...

cooper's fan girl..
Will do

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