Guess Who's Going Training At South Farm...

Monday, February 14, 2011

My personal goal has been to go Training at South Farm in May.  But it hadn't really been discussed with Bonnie yet, so of course it was kinda all up in the air.  Not anymore!

Kaye was feeling pretty good on Saturday, the weather was getting a bit warmer and she had been cooped up all week.  Katie got the first ride on her since I had to go pick up feed at Agway.   And Kaye was going her best to spook at everything.  She was jumping the patch of snow that had blown in the doors, she was spooking at every noise.  In other words, feeling good and expressing it the only way she knew how.  After Katie rode, I got to hop up and make sure Kaye was settled before any of the kids got on her.  Once I got on though, Kaye realized it was time to settle down and get to work.  We went through the spooking stuff last winter, and she's come to realize that I don't put up with that anymore.  Even though Katie had warmed Kaye up already, I still started her out with a good bit of walk work.  The free walk has a coefficient of 2 in all the dressage tests, so really you can't spend too much time working on the walk.  Especially with Kaye, who doesn't have a real great walk to begin with.  Plus I wanted to make sure that I had her attention on me and not everything else.  Then when Bonnie rejoined us in the arena, we picked up the trot.  I've really been working on keeping myself relaxed.  As soon as I get any bit of tension in myself, I get tense all over and Kaye picks up on that.  Then she gets tense and starts resisting.  And actually my last two rides were pretty good with that.  She was pretty good both at the trot and canter, soft and responsive to my aids.  Then it was time to jump a bit.  We just worked over a baby fence, since this was my first jump school since October.  As usual my first fence wasn't all that great, but it actually wasn't as bad as usual.  And my second fence was pretty darn good!  Biggest thing was that I just wasn't getting my timing right.  So the reins were tied in a knot and I started jumping with no hands.  Fixed that problem!

So after we finished jumping, I was walking the marsie around and Bonnie asked what level I was going to do this year.  I was honest with her, told her that I wanted to move up to training this year.  That for me, I'd probably go Novice at the first combined test, but then move up to Training at the next one.  And Bonnie agreed with me!  In fact she thinks that I should just do two divisions at the first CT, Novice first then Training after.  She pointed out that I thought the Novice jumps were small, and after school some Training level fences with Boyd in the fall I am ready.  And the CTs are a good place for me to move up.  They have pretty easy courses, nothing harder than what we jump at home, so I can do it no problem.

So Kaye and I will be tackling Training this spring!  I can't wait for show season to start!