August 31, 2021

Lamplight: Friday

We arrived on Thursday morning and did basically just enough schooling Thursday evening to do ring familiarization. It took SO LONG, but this is the first year that I've been able to take Connor to places he's never been before and have him not lose his damn mind, (and to be fair, the first year I've even attempted to take him new places since 2014-ish for pretty much that exact reason), which I appreciate very much. But we do still have to snort at the judge's box.


All photos courtesy of my momma, who made the long drive up from Tennessee for this!

He was feeling a little spicy Thursday night, so I asked my trainer for an unusually long warm-up (for us) on Friday, knowing we'd need it. And boy did we ever.

Looking back on it, I think part of him acting out was the borrowed Trilogy. CGP tightened the girth halfway through my warm-up, and that was when he really started acting bad. I wasn't helping myself either, and was finding it hard to sit deeply and relax, which again, was partially the saddle.


To her absolute credit, halfway through watching me ride my spicy bucking pony in warmup, CGP said, "Drop your stirrups." I wasn't sure I heard her correctly. Here? Now? "Yes, drop them."

Walking into warmup with CGP

I never would have thought to do that if I was by myself, but it was exactly the right call. Suddenly I sat deeply, and a minute or two later Connor exhaled, still not super comfortable but also feeling less explodey. For him, anyway.

I rode the test conservatively, and it showed. This test was little more up and down, with 8's for both centerlines, a 7.5 for the quality of one of our serpentines (!!!!), 7's for our halt/reinback, the final collected trot and an upward canter transition, and then a lot of 5-6.5's for a 62.024%


Comments were "Some very nice moments! At times tight in topline - needs better bend through body especially in trot. Good luck!"

Did I really expect a good free walk in a saddle he didn't like?

That score wrapped up what we needed for All Breeds, so Saturday was just for fun! And...we would be doing it in yet another saddle!

CGP all smiles as we walk out


  1. That has to be so hard competing in a less than ideal saddle, especially at a new venue. Nice work pushing through the spicy parts and having a nice test!

  2. Woot for All Breeds, and a great trainer, and achieving despite tack challenges!

  3. Showing in a borrowed saddle is nervewracking and can really mess up the flow, glad you guys were able to get your score for All breeds!