Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Williams First Show



  Two weekends ago on May 18th I took William to the Winters End Dressage show in beautiful Picton, Ontario.  This is a schooling dressage show that I help organize along with my mom, the owner of Winters End; Elaine, and our friend who is a dressage trainer Lori.  The idea is to have a quality schooling show without all the extra cost added you might have if you were at another high end facility.  The show is very laid back and encouraging for young horses and green riders, but set in a very polished and professional manner.

 I decided that William was ready to enter his first show off property, and,  since it is so low key there, and he has been there a few times for lesson I thought it was a good choice for him.  William was a super boy that weekend.  He stood perfectly to be braided and shined.  He loaded onto the trailer no issue, and when we arrived he stood quietly by the trailer.  



 I took him for a walk around the property for about 20 minutes and he was very settled and interested in what was going on.  I tacked up early to give him a nice relaxing warm up and we took our time walking on a long rein and standing around soaking up the atmosphere.  I was actually sort of shocked and surprised with how well behaved he was but I was not about to complain.

 Soon, it was our turn.  We were doing the Walk Trot Cadora Tests A and B.  William was an absolute gem!  I thought he was excellent for his first time doing a test at a show.  A few bobbles here and there but nothing that bothered me one bit and I was thrilled to pieces.  In his second test he had a tense moment where he had a mini meltdown after the first halt and did not want to go forward.  I tried to just stay relaxed but firm that he was to stand and then walk on afterwards and after that little mishap he continued on to do a beautiful test.












 I was so happy with William that I didn't even care where we placed or how we scored.  That is, until I saw the scores and that I scored a 51 for my first test and a 47 for my second.  I was sort of crushed.  Really mostly upset because William was so well behaved and tried his little heart out and did not get the recognition for it.  I do not want to get into a big spiel about the judging but needless to say there was an issue for me there.  If you care to watch the video feel free to comment on your thoughts.

 I tried my best to put that behind me and just be so proud of William.  He was such a little show horse that day and it has gotten me very excited about his future.  Williams first show was a big success!














*All photos are used with permission from Susan Dall Photography and are copyright protected.

19 comments:

  1. Watched the video on your YouTube channel. I have a feeling the judge nailed you for how inconsistent William is in the contact. Lots of rooting, gnawing, and head tossing going on. He was also quick in the tempo & very resistant to the aides. That being said, its freaking walk trot at a schooling show! I bet that this was an "L" judge feeling a bit too high & mighty...

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  2. Thank you for your comment. I agree on all of the above that you said regarding our test. My only issue is that it was a walk trot schooling show... and 2 of the riders in my class scored 69, with major errors in the test like mishapen circles, late transitions etc. I think a 69 is fine for them, but how can I score so much lower, like almost 20 %. In the junior the only rider scored over 70 and her horse barely trotted, it was walk jogging - walk - jogging the whole time. I don't care about other peoples scores, I just do not understand the difference in scores.

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  3. I promise I am over this now...LOL Just looking for insight.

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  4. Just watched the video. I agree the judge was super harsh. I would have probably scored you in the mid to low 60s, but of course I am no rated judge. I guess chalk that one up to a judge you may not want to show under again?

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    1. Thank you, I trust your judgment so thanks so much for watching and commenting.

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  5. If it makes you feel any better, my first two shows with Simon (although not dressage) were 100% satisfaction with his behavior and 0% satisfaction with placings and ribbons. It's not exactly the same situation because I didn't feel the judge was being harsh, but I do emphasize with being a little deflated on their first outings when it comes to scores and placings.

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    1. William ripped up his 4th place ribbon afterwards...I guess he was deflated too hahah

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  6. I love the photos! I can't really comment because I know nothing about dressage. However, I think it was awesome that William was great for you! Getting him out there and getting used to the environment and having a great experience is great for him :)

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  7. Glad you aren't letting the judging get you down, William looks great for his first show! The fact that it went well and he had a positive experience is great enough.

    Side note, but my family is from Quinte way, so Picton/Bloomfield is my home away from home. I used to spend all summer there, but haven't recently because of Cara. Knowing that there are fun little outings like this, maybe I can truck her along with me sometime in the future.

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    1. Oh wow you definitely should! There is so much to do here...including beach rides!

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  8. He is so so cute in all these photos <3

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  9. I think William aced the whole day! But of course I am a tad bit biased. He is moving up the ranks to be number 1 poster boy. Sorry Parker and Archie :) and Merlin too.

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    1. Yes Archie better put on his best behaviour or William will totally be taking the poster boy spot lol

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  10. I wonder if him carrying himself so up was a factor. At this level they want to see that stretch over the top line and even nose poked out a bit. I think less is more when doing these tests as hard as it is. He def gets very tight and short at times, stiff behind. Were the other horses long-ish rein and more relaxed albeit not even remotely on the bit?

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    1. It could be...that is his natural head carriage. Our focus right now is getting him to stretch out and down more into the bit....he does not ride into the contact %100 time yet. I agree with him being tight and somewhat tense at some points, while other points I think he is actually flowing along quite nicely. Two of the other horses were like William, on the bit, somewhat tense...one horse had a complete meltdown and barely made it around, others were above the bit, relaxed but uneven steps. No one was blowing anything away including myself, but no one was totally blowing it either except maybe that one stressed horse. Do you think that score is in line then?

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  11. Not sure that a score was in line but technically they arent supposed to score you against each other, just against the "ideal 10". I'd say slightly on the low side but not far off. But as you said it was the experience not the score, you have bigger and better goals than master walk/trot!Skip ahead to first level work and you'll probably be in the money

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  12. Yay for William being so good. Love the pics and video - he is so gorgeous!!!
    Sorry the judgebwas so harsh though.

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