My 2012 Show Season Highlights
 By Foxchase Farm   •   28th Nov 2012   •   2,078 views   •   4 comments
My 2012 Show Season Highlights

Looking back on the year, I’m amazed at what a crazy show season it has been for me. Between lame horses, new horses, and all the shows I’ve been to, I’ll share the highlights and lowlights of my 2011-12 show season.

It’s December 2011. After a refreshing month of only having one show in November, I was ready and excited to show again. I was riding Riley, the horse I leased. I had been leasing him for almost 2 years. We went to the December Hunter Classic in Maryland and did pretty well. We were second in one of the over fences classes and second in the Children’s Medal. Later in December we went to another show, but it definitely wasn’t our best.

In Late December, there was this horse that I tried out. My friend tried him out before me, and absolutely loved him, but her parents wouldn’t pay to buy the horse. He cost $10,000. My trainer was also in love with the horse and really wanted one of our kids to have him. So, I was the next one to try him out. I ended up not liking him at all, because he was not my type of ride. But, it got ideas rolling around in my head. After a long time of thinking about it, I decided I wanted something new. I convinced my dad it was time to stop leasing Riley and go horse shopping.

January came around and I took Riley to another show. This was literally our worst show. Ever. It was about a week after New Years, and on New Years my friend and I decided to go without soda for the year. Me, being a Mountain Dew addict, was having some serious withdrawal. I was super lethargic and couldn’t function like I normally could. It sounds ridiculous, but I swear to it! Whenever my trainer thinks about that show I swear she gags a little.

While we were still horse shopping, I realized something. There was a horse I had been exercising for my trainer to get him sold. At first, I didn’t like him and would have never imagined buying him. But, I started to fall for him. At the end of January, we bought Beau. We went to our first show two days after, and it wasn’t great, but he was (and still is) pretty green so I was fine with it.

I took Riley to our last show together up in Pennsylvania in February. It wasn’t our best, but it was an improvement over the previous show so I was content with it. My lease on him didn’t end until the end of March, but decided to end on that note. I spent a lot of time in February doing flat work with Beau and just connecting with him more. We took him to his first “big boy show” (rated show) at the beginning of March in Lexington, Virginia. He was a nut in schooling, but when it came time to show, he was absolutely perfect and I couldn’t have asked any more of him. There were little mistakes in our courses which kept us out of the ribbons, but we were third in the hack out of a large, competitive class! I was so happy.

There were a few more local shows, and in April we took him to HITS Culpeper. The Friday I showed was kind of a crazy day. I was also riding another pony that I had been working with. The pony, Tucker, had been broke for maybe thirty days and we were bringing him for the young pony undersaddle. He was a little nutty on the lunge line and when I had first gotten on him, so my trainer decided that I should take him in the class instead of the young girl who was going to originally. We didn’t want her to get hurt in case he had a “baby moment.” He ended up being wonderful and we were third in the class! Beau on the other hand, wasn’t his best that day. He pulled out his quirky stop in both courses (even though he went around the warm up fine) but he was fourth in the hack, right behind all of the “fancy” horses.

In May I took Beau in his first three-foot medal class. I was doing the 2’6 division earlier in the day, and I made a deal with my trainer. We were having trouble keeping rails up because he likes to just plow through the jumps. The deal was if I kept all the rails up in my three 2’6 courses, she would let me do the three-foot. We kept all the rails up, so we got to do the medal! He was really good, but stopped at one jump that there was no distance to, so I couldn’t really blame him.

In June, it was time for Upperville! He had lost a shoe about two weeks before Upperville. But, even after he got the shoe back on he was still lame. We figured he just twisted his ankle or something in the process of losing it. So, two days before Upperville, he turned up sound and I just took him for a light hack. I gave him the next day off, and the day after that was Upperville! We were showing in the Back From The Track Hack. Just on a side note, whoever thought it was a good idea to get a bunch of ex-racehorses together and put them all in one class was out of their mind. That class was literally the most crazy and nerve-wracking class I’ve ever been in! A lot of the horses were losing their minds, bucking, taking off, etc. Beau was a superstar at the trot, but got a little nutty at the canter and even threw in a couple bucks! Despite all the craziness, we ended up eighth! Later in June was Loudoun Benefit. I planned on doing a 2’9 division, but the jump crew only set the jumps to 2’6. I was a little bitter about that, but this was probably our best show. He was so relaxed and was jumping well.

My 2012 Show Season Highlights

On July 3rd, I was having a lesson. We were just trotting along (without stirrups, of course) and all of a sudden, Beau tripped. He was a clumsy horse and tripped a lot, but this one was different. He couldn’t pull himself together afterwards, so I brought him back to a walk, then a halt. He was holding his leg up and wouldn’t put weight on it. I knew that couldn’t be good. Our barn manager thought it was something one of her horses had done previously, so we tried her method. After a week with no progress, we brought him to the vet. He told us it was carpal (knee) arthritis. He got injections, but still no improvements. One day at the barn, another vet was out. She is a well-trusted vet, so we decided to let her look at him. She thought it was a soft-tissue problem. She pulled out her ultrasound, and sure enough, he had torn his suspensory—badly. Twenty-one days after he tripped we finally had an answer to the problem.

We decided to swap Beau’s spot with my other horse, Belle. We brought Beau home, and sent Belle out to the place where we board at. I was going to try out jumpers for a little bit until Beau was sound. I ended up not liking the jumpers as much as the hunters, so we decided to put Belle up for lease. I was still riding and working with Tucker regularly, so I was content.

A little bit later, a pony named Skittles came back to the barn after being leased out. I got along with her really well, so I started unofficially leasing her for a little bit. I took her to WIHS Local Day and we were 7th in one of the over fences classes! I also got in five local shows on her to qualify for state finals. But, the day after local day she got a bad cut on her leg. It was still wrapped up and swollen about a week before finals.

So, I took my trainer’s new lesson pony, Nemo, to state finals. His old owner had already taken him to plenty of shows to qualify him. I ended up only riding him three times before finals. He was an absolute star and we ended up champion in the large ponies! It was an awesome last show of the year!

I won’t be leasing Nemo or anything, but I think I will continue leasing Skittles until the end of the year. Beau has his check-up appointment with the vet on Tuesday so that will be the next big factor of what I’m doing next. Belle is leaving to get leased out on Saturday, so it will just be Beau and Toodles(my mini) at my house. I’m thinking that if Beau is allowed to trot undersaddle and be turned out normally after this appointment, we’ll move him back to the barn. My trainer also wants to breed Skittles since she still isn’t sound, so we will probably end up just swapping their spots.

2012 has been a crazy year for me, and I’m hoping 2013 will run a little smoother!
Horse News More In This Category:  Shows and Events      Horse News More From This Author:  Foxchase Farm
Whoa, that's insane! Hopefully Beau's all healed up soon! :D
  Nov 28, 2012  •  1,800 views
Aww, Skittles? That's such a sweet name!

Good luck with Beau, I hope he gets better! :)
  Nov 29, 2012  •  2,272 views
PonyBox  MOD 
Can't wait to hear about Beau's 2013 return!
  Dec 2, 2012  •  1,888 views
PonyBox  MOD 
Great article! Good luck in 2013. Please keep us updated on how you guys are doing!
  Dec 2, 2012  •  1,857 views
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