Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Event Derby Recap. Because Amanda Said I Would Be Fired if I Didn't.

Giant twisty table of doom.
Bacon and I had a little bit of a rough weekend. My precious magical pony seemed to be in heat and had an extra dash of sass and impatience in her. I tried not to take any of it personally, because she still played my games and gave me great rides. She really extremely fails at braids though. I thought it was the dreaded rubber bands that bothered her, but it was in fact the braiding process. Saturday, I thought I would practice braiding before my ride and I wanted to try yarn instead. She started out great, and then slowly lost her marbles. And one of them landed on my foot. I have done some research, and many have mentioned using chloraseptic spray to numb the area first. Also, a lip chain. Because nobody is going to believe she is a mare if I have to roach her damn mane and she is called Bacon. Just no.
Just trying to bend. No big deal.
Anyways, mare was extra weavy and fidgety on our way to the show. She has been great all year and handled everything like a pro until yesterday. And really, she was just more annoying than anything. And Courage thought he was a stallion and attempted to mount her while tied to the trailer, so she was removed from him. Our dressage warm up was a bit tense but she did what I wanted her to do for the most part. The pasture was a bit hard and slippery, so I didn't want to push anything.
Any time I get to bust out my Aztec Diamonds is ok with me.
Lindsey had warned me before our test that the arena was not very flat and was deeper in a lot of random spots, so the test wouldn't ride terribly smoothly and that maybe keeping it more on the conservative side would be wise. I kept that in mind, and entered nice and straight into the arena. I had a little bit more bend in the left this time, as we worked on it with a new approach on Friday (thanks Lindsey!) and trekked our way around the arena.
Stretch? I don't know what this stretch thing is that you speak of.
I don't think our circles were all that great, as I tried my best to keep my horse trudging through the deep wavy sand. I felt so inconsistent. Our free walk did not include much stretch, as she was quite distracted by the barn next to the arena, but we FINALLY got our left canter lead. It felt nice to finally get past that demon. I had been asking for the canter really close to approaching B (as you are supposed to ask for the canter at any point approaching B in Novice Test A) and this time, I asked a little further out on our trot circle. I think that helped a bit. Overall, even though the arena was not great, I felt like it was a decent test and I was happy with it.
Sweet lord Jesus, I need to sit back.

We win at square halts and being shiny.
I went out to do my course walk, and again the footing was questionable. Slippery dry cheat grass and hard pack ground meant wide turns. The course started with two show jumps and a nice inviting log. A left hander to a picket fence thing, and then a big left turn to what looked like a giant rampy-brushy thing to me.
What Bacon had been waiting for all day.
The course had 15 questions and was thoroughly going to test us. Most of the jumps are a little on the wonky side, but Bacon never looked at any of them. The question I was worried about most was going up a little hill, around a downhill turn to a down bank and then two strides to an up bank. I have never done an up and down bank so quickly before, and I really suck at riding down banks. And of course, we had a rematch with the giant twisty table. I was worried about a few of the jumps, but I really shouldn't have been.
Log jump!

The ramp Bacon cleared with ease.
We were off and running and hit a weird rhythm for the first two fences. I pushed her forward a little more to the third fence and fixed that for the most part. The picket fence thing was a little awkward, but our jump over the ramp was way fun and felt pretty effortless on Bacon's part. Next, we tackled a hay rack and a cabin, none of which bothered her at all. The wagon full of wood was no issue either, even though it looks sketchy as hell.
Hay rack? Damn straight.
Aaaannndd sketchy wagon.
Next was the dreaded banks. I slowed Bacon to a trot when coming down the hill to do the down bank. She went off fine, but before we even got to the banks, my arm band had slipped off and got tangled in my hand when we went down the bank. Not only that, but I had lost my stirrup as well, and Bacon had ears locked on to the up bank but new I was not even close to being ready for it. We had our first run out on xc (BOOO me!).
Damn you down banks.
Must fix this.
That's better.
I chucked the arm band, and came back around and went straight up the bank. Next was a nice chevron jump to a long left rollback to the twisty table (which rode like cake) and another left hander to a fun brush jump. And then ANOTHER left rollback to the ditch. Last was the water, which was the only time I gave a kiss to Bacon and then we galloped across the finish. I was pretty happy to survive the course, but very upset with myself for the run out. Next time, I will not forget my medical bracelet though. Overall, we had 4.8 faults in xc (show jump rules I believe get used in derbies?) and I got handed back my dressage test. We received a 41. I was a little bummed about that because I thought it was better than my lest test (a 34) but different judges like different things. Oh well!
So much shine. I can't even.
Shut up table. No one cares about you.
We ended up in 3rd out of six riders after all was said and done. Really, I can't complain. We never really had our happy together groove like we normally do, but she still tried for me and I can't ask for much more than that. Especially since I never really get to ride because the heat makes my illness work. I did get a nice smile and warm feeling after talking with another rider. She did not know I have only been jumping for a little over a year and had very nice things to say about my riding. Plus, I got to compete with my musketeers and their ponies, and that is so much fun.
This hind end cracks me up.

And so do ditch pictures.


  1. She has a very snappy hind end!

  2. yay congratulations!! you guys look great! my mare had a mare day at our last event too that kinda messed with our typical rhythm.. frustrating but looks like you did a great job with the horse you had. some of those jumps look SUPER sketchy too haha, but Bacon clearly doesn't care :D

  3. As always, great riding in tough circumstances!

  4. Stinks about the run out! Good for you for making that terrifying table your bitch though ;)

  5. 1) everyone should have my name in their post title. 2) I already fired you for not posting it yesterday 3) you're re-hired for posting it today with my name in the title. 4) Bacon is a beast.

  6. Serious beast mode right there. If you didn't have some little mare things here and there, where would the fun be?! Way to have an awesome time. That twisty table is amazing, too!

  7. It's still a better dressage score than any given out by she-who-shall-not-be-named. ;-)

    Sorry about the theatrics. I don't know what's gotten in to him.

  8. Fabulous! Sounds like a great outing and the pictures are awesome!! Bacon is so adorable

  9. Scope for days on that mare! You guys look great and so brave!

  10. You guys nailed it! Scores are just silly numbers, how it felt is most important!

  11. *gets down on knees and says a prayer of gratitude that my mare apparently never ever goes on heat, I think it's because she conceives by wind pollination*
    Bacon is just beautiful. Well done both of you! Absolutely LOVE that square halt photo.

  12. You guys did great despite a bobble on course. It happens to everyone, still a great showing!

  13. I just can never see too many pictures of Bacon. Or saying Bacon's name loudly and in different voices.

  14. Wow beautiful pictures.The Kentucky Derby and the festival both are fantastic fun and, as a lifelong Louisvillian, I welcome you to the event and to our fine city. Just keep in mind that there are some things you should do while here and some things you probably shouldn’t, at least if having fun is your motivation. If you really want fun and feel relax then book a Kentucky Derby Rentals