From one wet, dreary, cold weekend…. to what could be a different part of the country this weekend. We are SO lucky to have had great weather this last weekend for the Area VII opener at NWEC in Rainier, WA. I even got a sock tan from today and a left arm tan from driving home in the afternoon sunshine. While you finish the rest of this blog, you can watch the video I made of the weekend here.
But, I digress, this blog is not about the weather but rather about eventing! It was a quiet weekend for us at PSF, represented by Joann Keller-Green, and me on Liz Neuzil’s horse Utopia’s River, and Polestar De Novo. Joann and I thoroughly enjoyed each other’s company and had a very easy time of it. We would like to say that we rocked the weekend… but it isnt true. Dressage ended up about as successful for us as a worm in a hen house. We barely survived. This event has re-invigorated my enthusiasm for the event evaluation forms. I am filling mine out and mailing it in, pronto!! I have never seen a worse dressage warmup in my life. And I have seen some bad ones. This takes the cake. We work very hard to show off our horses at these competitions and get them to develop to the next level. That dressage warmup arena reduced most horses to at least two levels lower than they could actually do. It was AWFUL.
That is all Im going to gripe on that front. Those who were there will know what I mean, and those that were not in attendance can rest assured that it will probably be fixed by next year. The TD also gets a BIG D- for a grade because she missed the safety aspect of having so many horses compressed into one small area. They are lucky nobody was hurt. I managed to run into several spectators myself, and I cannot have been the only one.
Ok, really. Im done griping.
But the jumping phases were excellent. Joann managed to squeek into 3rd place with a clean xc with just a few time penalties, and a lovely SJ test. She now has 2/4 qualifying runs for her half star at Inavale HT finished. Two more to go and she is golden. Joann must have done at least 3 little end-zone dances throughout the rest of the day she was so happy with her ride.
My expectations were crushed by my disasterous dressage tests – Ria is too hot and sensitive to cope well with the squishy warmup. She was nervous, explosive and did not trust that all those horses were not out to get her. Dino was thinking along the same lines. So when I got to XC warmup, I was thinking the worst… thinking that I would scare everyone to the edges of the arena. We did a little of that, but I managed to find relief from the warmup arena as soon as I got on course. Ria was great – very obedient and jumped extremely well. Dino had a “confusal” at fence #1, but after that we were solid! I was thrilled with his first time performance. He was bold, confident and brave. We took about 1 min to get into the water jump, but it was clear and I think that I could overhear the jump judge asking her friend, “Now how do I judge that???”. By the time that I crossed the finish, I was in tears not only because I was so thrilled with Dino’s performance but also because I was thinking of his brother, Cobrador, who we lost last year. Coby’s dreams were snapped shut way too soon, and mine went down with him. I will miss him forever. But, I am grateful for Dino’s similarity, they are truly brothers in their talent and personalities. Thank you, Lucy.