Sunday, April 3, 2011

Truck Trouble and Sister’s Big Weekend

 Oh, and we had a dressage show too.
The big red truck has been having issues and Kissee has checked it out a couple of times in the last few months – to no avail. Finally, its loss of power at dangerous moments meant another trip to the truck doc. We dropped it off early Tuesday morning and Wednesday, Darrel called to ask a few more questions and change the cue from “transmission” to “diesel guy” – several trucks before ours, and a fix by weekend unlikely. BUT we had a dressage show at Patty’s scheduled for Saturday. So, crossing fingers, I made arrangements to retrieve the unfixed truck on Friday morning and take our chances. Kathy and Mallory were on stand-by for either horse hauling or rescue operations.
Friday morning at the shop Darrel said the tech was just putting the truck on the lift – so we crossed fingers and toes in hopes of a fix before 5pm. Mid-day and the word was that diagnostics found nothing and the “educated guess” was that the accelerator sensor was having issues (pricey) and did we want to replace it in hopes of a fix. We did and got the truck back just before 5 in time to check it going to Patty’s for a “night before show” lesson for the girls.
We loaded Sister, Pico and Diez and I worked Sister while the girls had a quick lesson. Ivy and Pico practiced Prix Caprilli and Alaina worked on holding Diez together while working for impulsion, bend, and submission to the bit (all very difficult for a retired Mongolian War Horse). After Alaina finished with Diez, she convinced me to let her try Sister over the crossbar of the PC test. Sister did fine and in fact, took a couple of nice canter departs after going over the poles. So, Alaina and Sister did a few circles trotting over the crossbar and we quit for the night. Meanwhile, Ivy was washing (torturing) Pico. It was to cold to wash Diez and I was too tired to wash Sister – we went home.

The truck ran fine.

First thing Saturday morning and we headed to Patty’s at 7am. Ivy was scheduled to ride Prix Caprilli at 8:30 and we wanted to have a chance to school before the first ride. Larry and Patty had groomed the arena to a high finish. Lovely swirls converging on center line and swooping around the end of the arena at “C.” Yes, you guessed it. Freako-Pico did NOT want to STEP anywhere near such beautiful dirt. OMG.
Alaina and I took Sister and Diez into the arena with Pico to help him adapt to the perfect dirt. After Prix Caprilli (134 points/1st place), Ivy and Pico rode First Level test 1 (55.172) and then (after the arena was shortened) Training Level test 3 (63.6) and was high point baby juniors FL and TL. The biggest problem Pico and Ivy have is no stretch in the stretchy circle and getting lengthened stride in canter. Sister and I rode Intro A and B with some nice moments (hehe) – we scored 63.125 on both tests. We need steadier connection and more ground cover in the walk.

Really, I was pretty happy with Sister since she is making progress with left bend and fussiness in the bridle. Alaina and Diez scored 63 in Intro C and 60.416 in TL-1. The judge (Lyn Francik) says Diez needs more ground cover at the walk and better inside bend.

At lunch, Lyn suggested that I work on asking for canter with a whip – tap-tap-tap – when the bend is right and see if that helps get a better canter depart. I will have to try that soon.

The truck ran fine - so maybe it was the accelerator sensor.

All in all,a fun day with our dressage friends and beautiful weather before the BIG WIND came in Sunday.

Alaina has decided to aim for Prix Caprilli with Sister since Diez is not an option (5 degrees of rotation from her founder a couple of years ago excuse her from jumping). So, Alaina saddled and lounged Sister on Sunday to try a bit of “jumping” and trail work. Sister shows potential for both since she isn’t spooky and is athletic. Both girls worked Sister over a pole in the round pen both directions and Alaina worked the bridge, cavaletti, ground poles and the box out in the big arena. Ivy did some jumping with Pico and Alaina gave Sunny a light workout too. The wind was howling but the temperature was warm. A nice end to a horsey weekend. YaYa.
PS - Meet Ruthie's new horse Dreamer!

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