So did I meet my goals that I set for myself?
1) Don’t Get Handsey – I was so good with this goal. I would say, without a doubt, mission accomplished! 2) Do Everything Myself – Heck yeah! No one even TOUCHED Lucky. It was all me!
3) Don’t Loose Equipment – Ummm…I don’t think so. Knowing me though it is a maybe. I didn’t ride with the whip so I at least know I didn’t loose that…
4) Get a 6 on Our Freewalk – I ended up exceeding this goal! We got a 7!!
5) Feel Confident – This is the only goal I don’t feel like I really accomplished, but that is because I was worried about stuff on the ground. I felt totally confident when riding!
Lucky and I earned at 65.63% which was good enough for second place. I can say with all honesty that I don’t think we earned that score, but, as so many people have told me, don’t question a good score! I felt more like it was a 60% test…maybe a touch higher. The score sheet was all 6s and 7s which made us look a lot more consistent than I felt like we were. So you are probably thinking that I must be thrilled with the results? Well…not exactly. On one hand I am very happy with how Lucky and I did.
Lucky far exceeded my expectations for her. She is not used to showing so if this is our starting point she will be X in no time! I mean, I might not have been able to get her to settle down 100%, but I honestly feel that will come with time. If she was this good already I am confident that she will just keep getting better and better and more and more relaxed the more she is out and about.
I am also really proud of myself because I rode during my test. Like really rode and made corrections. When I walked out of that show ring I felt like a good rider!!! I NEVER feel like that so I was thrilled. So what is wrong? Well, the judge didn’t agree with my assessment of my riding…In fact, he gave 7s on most of the coefficients (including gaits!) but he gave me 6s for Rider Position and Submission. I have been working really, really hard on my position and I thought I made my corrections quietly. Clearly not. I didn’t feel like she was very submissive at all so that means I thought that score was accurate, but does that mean that my position wasn’t that great either? Especially since the judge was so generous in his other scores. I didn’t even get a comment to go with it so I have no idea what the judge felt like I should work on.
I know I shouldn’t let a judges opinion carry that much weight, but it is hard because that has been something I have really, really been focusing on. Imagine how bad my position must have been before my eight weeks of intensive corrections?
Overall though I am THRILLED with such a start to the show year. The fact that Lucky was nervous about going off the property will go away with more experience. The fact that I was stressing about being alone will also go away the more it happens. I know that it was not a beautiful test, but it was without a doubt where Lucky and I are at the moment. If where we are in 2012 is already 10% higher than where we were in October of 2011 I think we are doing alright. I show because I love ribbons (duh), but also because I love getting people’s honest opinions. Judges have nothing to gain by scoring you harshly so they are usually completely fair with their assessments. If we are really at a 65% for Intro A and B I really need to get the canter show ring ready ASAP!