Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Results and Apologies

Sorry for just disappearing for over a month! I got busy getting ready to go back to school, then going back to school. And now that I'm into midterm season (my first one is tomorrow), blogging seems like a great way to avoid the studying I really should be doing (or at least to take a quick break from that studying).

Here are the result of Scarface and my first dressage show. A pair of 6th place ribbons! I think there were nine and ten horses in each of my classes, which means we did pretty good considering this was our first show in a few years, our first ever dressage show and, to be honest, Scarface has a long way to go with dressage. He is very willing and we can ride relatively precisely, but he was train for years to go slow and would get in trouble if he went more forward. Definitely lots to work on. Our biggest comment (on pretty much every maneuver) was: MORE FORWARD!!! Which is kind of funny because Scarface thought he was working his butt off trotting as fast as he was. He also tends to get a bit downhill in his movement because of his former training. By far our biggest area for improvement is our walk maneuvers. Scarface was trained to walk extremely slow, like all western pleasure horses. So he almost stops between each step sometimes. I know he can walk normally or even fast, since he loves to walk fast in the halter, but it's just a matter of teaching him that it's ok was walk faster under saddle if I ask him.

The other big place we lost point was use of voice (I know, a big no-no in dressage). But to be honest, I think we probably would have had some breaks of gate if I hadn't clucked and kissed. Scarface is lazy AND very voice-trained.

So overall, we got a 52.5% on Training Test 2 and 52.0% on Training Test 3. Not amazing (or even good) scores, but for us they were great for our first time out in a discipline brand new to both of us. And I guess we didn't look too foolish, since we placed in the middle of the pack.

I'd love to go to a few dressage shows next year. Goals?
1. To improve our overall score to above 55%
2. To improve our free walk to consistently receive 5

While we certainly had our issues with our tests, we did get some nice comments from the judge.
1. Gorgeous horse (Thank you!!!)
2. He has better movement than he is showing (True and encouraging that if we can get a bit more "forward thinking" we should be able to improve our scores)

Overall though, I had a great time! Sorry, no photos (my dad forgot the memory card in the computer at home). There is a video, but I haven't figured out yet how to make it small enough to be able to upload it, but I will probably work on it some.

Unfortunately, I haven't been able to ride much (at all) lately since I've gone back to school. I live/work/go to school 2 hours from where Scarface lives at my parents'. So between going to school 5 days a week and working every weekend, I haven't had any time to make the trip (the last day off I had was September 11, when I went to Spruce Meadows with the bf and my parents (Great job Eric Lamaze! Can't wait to watch you win another gold metal at the Olympics in 2012. And don't worry Ian Miller, you'll always be my favourite!). But Monday is a holiday (Canadian Thanksgiving) which means both school and work are closed and is my day off. I'll be going to my parents' for some delicious turkey and if the weather is decent, I should be able to ride my horse. Hooray!!!!


  1. Congratulations. That's a great result for your first dressage show. It's wonderful that the judge said Scarface is a gorgeous horse!

  2. That's great results for your first dressage show. Congrats :)

  3. Congrats on the show, that's great, especially since it was your first dressage show! I have to say, I've never heard of a Western Pleasure horse turning into a Dressage horse but I like it. It shows you that a horse can do anything with the right training and person.

    I'm so jealous you got to go to Spruce Meadows. I haven't been there in years. I watched it on TV and of course was cheering for Eric Lamaze and Hickstead!

    Also, Happy Thanksgiving! I don't know about you but I'm looking forward to the Turkey dinner my family is going to be having!

  4. Thanks for the encouragement guys!

    Cjay - he is pretty tall for a QH (16hh), but he really doesn't understand that he is allowed to go forward sometimes. Happy Thanksgiving! Enjoy your turkey, I know I will!