On Friday, September 21st, a group of us from the barn drove down to Paris, Kentucky, to compete on Saturday in the title mini trial. We ended up with 5 competitors, 5 horses, 1 little brother, 5 parents, 1 car, 2 truck-trailers, 1 truck-camper, 1 tent and 1 trainer. Not sure if it was planned or not, but we were kind of stuck in the back of the barn. Actually that makes it sound worse that it was. It was fantastic. They mostly had competitors either from that barn or ship in so there weren't many overnight stalls and I think we had a fantastic spot. Nothing was very far away.
I'll spare the boring details and just say that the farm is gorgeous, we couldn't have asked for better weather and the competition went wonderfully! I'm so glad we went and I was able to feel useful and help out quite a bit since Jen was still hobbling around.
To recap the results:
- Noah and Remi competed in the 18" division. This is their first horse trial and they handled it beautifully. Finished in 3rd.
- Ashlyn and Star competed in the other 18" division. Also their first event and they did great. Star threw a couple things at Ashlyn and she made wonderful decisions. Finished 5th.
- Ella and Thumper were in the 2' division. I wasn't able to watch their cross country but did warm them up. They were VERY ready and from what I understand, got several compliments on her riding... though it was a bit faster than she needed to go. They did great and finished 2nd.
- Shelby and Sunday actually competed in both 2' divisions. I was a little concerned about their fitness as the cross country measured at over 1800 meters and was a bit hilly, but they handled it great. A first time error in stadium (circling between fences like you can on cross country) cost them a few points but didn't move their placing. They finished 2nd in that division and won the other (by 5 points in front of Ella and Thumper!).
I know I always preach and believe that a good run is a good run and that the order of priority should always be:
- Learn something
- Do better
- Do well
But, that event is over. It was a FANTASTIC learning experience and I think Noble really gained what he needed to -- experience. We're going to find out too as I have sent in an entry for the 2'3" Starter Division at the Come Again Farm Fall Horse Trial next weekend. We'll also be going alone as no one else from the barn can make it. I debated a LOT about going to this event as there are several other things going on that weekend, including my 25 year high school reunion and a clinic just down the road. In the end, I want to go to the event and I think doing another this close will give Noble the experience (and hopefully reinforce the good experience) that he needs. We're eyeing the Walnut Creek Pony Club horse trial as well but it's not til November and if the weather turns bad, that will be it til spring. So off we go!
PS. I know I keep saying I'll post pictures. I promise I will. I don't have many that I take so I have to rely on the generosity of others to take and share pictures so I can post them. Some just made it up from the last few outtings so I'll try to get them up soon.