What a whirlwind of a weekend!
Spring Bay HT were held this weekend at the KY Horse Park and Masterson Station Park here in Lexington this weekend. I ran four horses: two experienced horses in Prelim to start their season and dust the cobwebs off, one young horse in his first novice, and one 4yo in his first event.
Grasshopper has made some huge breakthroughs in dressage this winter… As our vet said, “Wow he looks good!” But with all of the new muscling he’s developed, we’ve recently come to terms with the fact that his dressage saddle no longer fits… He was uncharacteristically tense in dressage on Saturday, which was super disappointing but… I already had plans to have him fitted and get a new saddle for him at Rolex two weeks from now. He was good in his first SJ round of the year, touching only one fence when I put my hands down for 4 faults. The plan was to canter him around the XC as a fitness workout, so I was happy with his clear round with just 2 time penalties despite not really going for time. He was a good boy, and it’s great to dust the cobwebs off for the season.
Nemo (aka Widespread Panic) is always highly enthusiastic his first three outings of the year… He’s a redhead, what can I say? He warmed up really well for the dressage to be the first horse of the day, but ten minutes till the test when they started making announcements, he turned into a fire breathing dragon and was a bit loony in dressage. Frustrating, but he’s here to school. Time was very hard to make in SJ, and I rode him forward to try to go for the DC…. He was super, and easily jumped double clean. I came out of the ring and the course designer said, “THANK YOU for going double clean! I needed that!” I loved it. He was super on XC… I had one fence that I missed on on both horses, but they were great all the way around and helped me out at my one miss. He finished clean with 4 time penalties, one of the faster rounds of the day.
Expedition did his second event, and his first novice. It’s been since July since his first BN, so we’ve really taken our time to do our homework. He’s a little exuberant as a typical OTTB, but I think he’ll be tremendously worthwhile, and we get along really well. He was good in dressage with some brilliant moments and some green moments, but soon he will be highly competitive. He jumped well in SJ with just one green rail, but was brave and listened well, especially in sloppy footing after a downpour. XC was a blast, and he galloped around full of confidence, loving every minute of his job. He finished in 11th place. Most importantly though, this is truly a young horse with a big future…. Watch out for him soon!
Years ago I bought a weanling TB/App cross and have brought him along for the last few years… This weekend was the debut event for Wapentake, aka Jerry. He had a very solid test that will be terrific in the future, and jumped easily double clean SJ. He was great on XC to finish on his dressage score in 9th. I’m excited to start a partnership with this young guy, and hope he’ll have big things to contribute in the future. Watch out for the spots!
Nemo finished 5th and Hopper finished 10th in the Preliminary.
Overall, it was a great schooling weekend for all four horses… We came to school the horses, get them mileage, and knock off the rust…. They were good boys, and I’m excited for bigger things to come for all of them!