From racing to riding... the training diary of an off the track Standardbred

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving!

I am thankful for everyone and everything that is in my life. This includes my family, friends, horses, and other pets. I am also thankful for the memories I have made and the experiences I have had the oppurtunity to have. I am thankful that we have food on the table and clothes on our back and a roof over our head because I realize that not everyone is as lucky as I am to have those things. Basically, I am thankful for what I have and I wouldn't change anything even if I had the chance to.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Once In a Blue Moon

So tonight, as most of you know, was a blue moon. This isn't your every occurance so I decided to celebrate.

At 9 o'clock pm, I went outside, grabbed Jet's bridle and my helmet and walked out to the paddock. Jet looked confused but happily took the bit and followed me out of the paddock. I hopped on bareback and proceeded to head towards the road.

I walked down the big hill, then asked for a trot. He happily gave it to me so I brought him back down to a walk. I praised him a lot! He is usually very weird bareback...I'm not sure if it is pain related because he is fine bareback in a field or on straightaways but in the ring with lots of corners, he isn't comfortable doing more than a walk bareback.

So we did lots of trot-walk, walk-trot transitions with some halts thrown in there. We went up and down the street onces then turned around to do it again. We trotted the entire way down there without stopping! I stopped him, gave him lots of pats, then decided to turn around and head a canter.

I asked him for it, he picked it right up but then broke a few strides later. I brought him back down then asked again and he picked it up again and we cantered half the way back home before I brought him back down to a walk to let him "cool down" even though he wasn't even warm.

I brought him in the ring, just to see if he'd trot in there after we just trotted on the street. We went around half way at the trot! That is a big accomplishment for him! I immediately halted, got off and gave him cookies because I was so proud (:

Then he kept on amazing me by demonstrating how well he is learning to ground tie. I took off his bridle and "ground tied" him outside of the tack room and he just stood there while I did what I had to do!

I love my horse.

-Emily and Jet

OH! Enjoy a preview of our new jumping accomplishments!

Yep, 2'! And cantering! Ignore my equitation. I know. It really stunk.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Haskins and Apple Knoll!

Sorry for the extremely long break in computer was yet again disagreeing with blogger...

October 24th, we went to our final Haskins show of the year. The weather was a bit gloomy and we were hoping to make it out of there before we got heavily rained on. Throughout the day, it was sprinkling here and there but the footing was good overall.
In all three in-ring classes, Jet was a super star! He was listening to me  most of the time and we didn't break at all! In the pleasure class, we changed the tempo of out our trot alot. He did not like one particular side of the rail where the footing was really deep so he would rush that wall at the trot. Ofcourse, that was the wall the judge was watching. But, the other horses in the class did similar things or keeped changing their headset etc. He was really consistant with his head and neck carriage. I let him have the amount of rein he wanted that I was comfortable with. Since we were both relaxed, he kept his head ncie and low! In the trail class, we had the trotting poles (our nemesis) that defeated us yet again...something to work coming about that later! The rest of the course went smoothly though. The obstacles included walking over poles, backing through the L, weaving and circling around cones, over a board, etc. In all four classes, we placed 2nd and got Reserve Champion in the Green horse division for the day!! Wooo! Pics coming!

The hunter pace was AMAZING. Jet was awesome yet again! I went there planning to just walk and trot around and maybe go over a few pre-elementary height logs. We got there, tacked up, and headed off to the warm up. We warmed up...okay. He was full of something...that's for sure. He just wanted to go! Well, atleast he picked to be the energizer bunny on the day of the hunter pace! He DEFINATELY did not get tired at all.

We were team number 30 (Mary-Kate and I). They called for our team and counted us down and we were off! We walked the first part where it was very hilly but then picked up a trot on our way to the field with the ditch. The ditch was covered in leaves but I attempted it anyways. Jet didn't quite understand the concept of the ditch but trotted over it just fine. We passed the team that went right before us because we thought they were a slow and steady type of team. Turns out...they weren't!

We had a problem with that team right away...they were either going 2 mph or trying to canter up our butts. We couldn't win in that situation! We stayed ahead of them for some time until they started yelling at us...then we let them pass. It is people like that who can ruin a fun experience for others.

Anyways, besides that one little inconvience, we had  BLAST! There were tons of jumps to choose from and anything I pointed Jet at, he went right over! No hesitation! We even did a 2' raised log uphill and he didn't even think about stopping. He was amazing! Love my horse (: We did all sorts of jumps. We did the pre-elementary logs (even did a line very nicely!) and also did some elementary jumps! We did a larger log, a coup, modified dog-house?, and several other jumps. Inbetween our jumping escapades, we did a lot of walking.

There were tons of hills, but the excellent footing made up for it. We got to go past some beautiful scenery including a pond, a nature reserve, and much more. We thought we got lost a few times but we never actualy were, thank goodness!

If you ever get the chance to go to Apple Knoll for horse trials, cross country schooling, or a hunter pace.... GO! It is WELL worth the money and you will not be disapppointed!
-Emily and Jet