Mum disappeared off early and came back with a super large pile of pallets, I'm sure when she left she was saying it was for hay. More worrying by the time she came back she said some were so strong they could be made into a trec bridge - hmmmmm!
However along with all the pallets she brought lots of yummy food, so I'll ignore the trec bridge comment in the hope she will need all of them for the hay. The only problem is while we are at the house I have to share my food with the chickens - yes seriously I have to share with chickens!
But back to my testing day. Mum loaded me up into the box on wheels and we headed off to Greenlands Farm in Great Cheverell to compete in the KVRC Mufti dressage competition. It was hot and they were running late when we arrived so Mum and Jo got me ready in slow time and spent a lot of time chatting rather than warming me up. This was fine by me, it was far too hot to be doing too much running around.
My first test was Prelim 13, which we have done quiet a bit recently. We started well and with it being so hot meant I was more than happy to have a stretch when we did the free walk on a long rein, which got me a 9 - Mum was thrilled. However Mum then rediscovered the ghost of right hand canter lead, I always think its good to keep her on her toes and its important she learns to correct my mistakes - which she didn't! However I did such a good job in helping her out that even on the wrong canter lead we got a 5.5 - well I was very balanced and I got a 6.5 for my transition to trot. Overall we got 72.1% and came 2nd. 1st was one collective mark higher than us - Mum you threw that win away.
No rest for the wicked we returned to the warm up arena for some medium trot practice ready for Novice 24. I did one good medium trot in the warm up, Mum should have saved it for the test! They are hard to do, especially in very hot weather. I got 6.5 for my medium trot and canter in the tests, which I know Mum was happy with (for the moment!) However Mum did not learn from the errors of our first test and did not correct my wrong canter lead so we only got a 3 and 4 - come on Mum, really! If we are competing at this level you really should have this sussed by now. This was my second ever Novice test so 65.8% is not too bad and we came 7th (which was also last - but as we got a rosette, it's 7th in my book!).
Normally we only do two dressage tests but today Mum wanted me to do three - errrr its hot, is this really the day to be doing three tests? The reason why, Mum read both Novice tests and didn't like either of them, so we had to do both - I have no idea where that logic comes from? So back to the warm up arena for some walk canter transitions and then straight back in to the competition school.
The judge thought I had some lovely walk paces giving me an 8. I also got an 8 for my half 10m circles from E to X and X to B. Third time lucky, when I gave Mum the wrong canter transition she finally recognised this and got me to change my lead - hurrah! Novice 30 is tricky having to change your canter lead across the diagonal. Mum was well impressed with my last transition which got me a 7. Ironically we got a higher mark for the harder test, scoring 66.9% which got me a 5th rosette.
It was a hot day and doing three tests needs lots of concentration but as this was my second and third Novice tests ever, I thought we did OK. Hopefully Mum will pay attention to the canter leads I give her now and will be brave enough to correct them if she thinks I've got them wrong. That's your homework Mum.
I have to say a big thank you to Eric's rider, Jo, for coming out and grooming me and more importantly reading the tests for Mum so she knew where to go - Jo she couldn't have done it without you, thank you xxx
I'm off to share my tea with those greedy chickens!