Luck’s First TND – Part 3

I got out and went to check in at the show office. I kind of had to pee, but got sidetracked when I heard a big “Are you here with Lucky” being called out to me from the warm-up ring. Remember how my friend recently let me ride her upper level quarter horse so I could fix my position? Well, even though she lives almost an hour an a half away she was there schooling her young FEI prospect!!! I had a friend at the show! And she even brought her Mom who I love and one of her boarders. I felt lighter than air as I walked in the show office to get my number. I only had time to watch the first half of my friends test before I had to go down and get Lucky ready. She came off the trailer much more relaxed than at the last show so I was hoping we were in for a good ride.

I got on her at 5:30 and walked in to the ring. As soon as I turned in my thought was “There must be something wrong with the ring”. Remember how I said it was pouring on my drive to the barn? Well, the warm-up ring looked completely flooded! I hadn’t realized it had rained that much. Not to be deterred I walked Lucky on a loose ring up to the top warm-up instead. What I found was footing that was even worse. By the time I had walked back down to the lower ring Lucky was already starting to take over and get quick. I blanked at that moment. I didn’t know how to fix it, especially with footing that could potentially cause an injury. I was super conservative just trying to get her to listen to my half halts at the walk. She was getting more and more flustered though. I was about ready to cry out in frustration when I heard a voice calling out at the side of the ring “pick up your reins and site deeper”. I could do that. I looked over and my friend had seen that I was in trouble (not hard to spot when your horse is jigging and going sideways) and had come up to help. Yay!

One of her first comments was “I don’t really think that she likes to be left to her own devices in the warm up. I think she is really hoping you will take charge and be strong with what you want her to do”. My warm up got getter and better with help from my friend. She reminded me to put my hands down and not pull, sit up, and circle when I need too. By the time we started to trot I didn’t even think about the scary footing, but rather, I was focused on making the gait as clear and steady as possible. By the time they called me to go in the ring I had a HUGE smile on my face. The horse I was riding in to the show ring was the horse I had at home. As I turned to go around the ring Lucky tensed up, and not having enough space to do figures in I started to panic. I tried to do loops and transitions, but when Lucky tried to trot 700 mph with me after I introduced myself to the judge I didn’t know what to do. My friend called out from the rail to sit up and put my hands down. Just knowing someone was there supporting me made me breath, and while Lucky was still trucking along, it was only at 400 mph, not 700…

To Be Continued…

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