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

Tuesday, February 16, 2010


Sorry! I haven't been posting lately. But anywaysss... let's catch everyone up =)

Past week or so: Rode a few times. Haven't done anything exciting really. Jet has been turned out with Elsa and Biscuit just about everyday. He has been lunged a few times on the days we didn't ride. We have more snow! UGGH. I just want the snow to go away!

Yesterday I went to Hobby Horse Farm, awesome farm just a few minutes down the rode from me, to watch my friend Mary-Kate (Hey Mary-Kate!) ride. She did an awesome job riding Eeyore! She then rode a horses that is free, Mickey?, and she did well on her aswell. She thinks she is a bad rider but she is actually really good! I would have some competition if I competed against her! So after Mary-Kate rode... I rode Poker. 17 hh tank with a lot on power. Poker is still green and requires extreme muscles. If you don't keep him forward and uphill, he will drag you everywhere. I have been working on my hunt seat Eq, and now I had to go back to dressage. My body was telling me hunt seat so I did horribly and it definately wasn't my best ride. I ended up getting Poker going really nicely w/t/c, and eh... ok at jumping. We did a course from crossrails to about 2'6"-3'ish. His jump is awkward though, not really what I am used to. He approaches the jump, takes a big stride, then sits back on his haunches and sits there for a second before launching over the jump. So I would go into my 2-point before I needed to since I was used to other horses. Then my leg swong everywhere... ok. Nevermind. I don't need to rant about my bad Eq. x] After I rode Poker, I switched horses with Julie who was riding Freedon. Poker absolutely LOVES Julie. I'm not exactly sure why but they definately clicked and he was an angel for her. Freedom was really good for me and I love riding him. He is very comfy and easy to ride if you know him. He has mental blocks sometimes. We swear we can hear the elevator music playing in his head. After I rode at HHF, I went back home to ride Jet.

HHF has an indoor, I do not. The ground was rock hard,a  bit icy, and it was uneven. So we just walked. We worked on connecting our front end and back end, and rounding through his back, and coming up underneath himself. Did we accomplish much? No, but it was a cold and windy night so I was ok with it. He was quiet the whole time and everytime I asked for something he would give it to me the best he could so I was extremely proud of him for that. We worked on stopping and standing, something he is not fond of. I would halt him, stop for 2 seconds, then walk on, stop him again, halt for 4 seconds, etc. until we could stand there for a good 30 seconds or so. With the wind and everything else going on, he was really focused on what I was asking him.

We are still have problems when I ask for him to not stick his nose out. He fights me for it. If you give him the reins, he takes them. You can ride on the buckle and have no loop in the reins. Good and bad. We still have to work on him not stretching out, but into a correct frame but that will take time and I don't want to rush it. It is those little things that you work on that eventually all come together. We will get there =)

Later in the week we are going to truck Jet down to HHF to use the indoor and get some good work in. We will also be taking Mary-Kate's Standardbred Katie! We will definately take pictures and videos to post later!

I will keep you updated and post more often! I promise!

-Em and Jet