JK Presents Schooling Show – Dressage Part II

Because of the scheduling snafu, we both ended up doing Training 2 at the end of the day after the Intro tests. I think the office forgot about us because they had already done the ribbons for Training 2 when I picked up our T1 tests. One of the trainers offered to have them get us ribbons if we scored higher, but we both said no. As much as I’m all for collecting ribbons for craft projects, we were really just there for the practice.

My husband went first. Since I was going minutes later, I shot a video with my cell phone while on Levi in the warm up. Quality!

Final score: 64.42%

Final comments: “Bold riding – try to slow down the canter to gain better balance.”

While the judge was definitely generous in scoring, I think the comments were accurate and helpful in pointing out what needs work.

Then it was my turn. It did not go well.

1. A: Enter working trot
X: Halt, salute Proceed working trot
6.5: “energetic entry almost square halt”

Energy provided by tail proprietary propulsion system

2. C: Track right
B: Circle right 20m
7.0: “active strides steady on bit”

3. K-X-M: Change rein
6.0: “slightly stiff in shoulders but good straightness”

I was happy we weren’t cantering

4. Between C & H: Working canter left lead
4.0: “wrong lead”

dammit horse

5. E: Circle left 20m
3.5 (x2): “still wrong lead”

We tried going back to trot and doing the transition again 3 times. None of them worked.

6. Between E & K: Working trot
3.0: “wrong lead not corrected”

True, but this movement is to trot?

7. A: Circle left 20m rising trot, allowing the horse to stretch forward and downward.
Before A: Shorten the reins
A: Working trot
4.0: “stretch not shown”

He started the circle really stretching down, but then he got distracted about half way through and giraffed

8. Between A & F Medium walk
F-E Change rein, medium walk
6.0: “tossing head at medium walk.”

I’ll take head tossing over breaking to trot or canter

9. E-M: Change rein, free walk
M: Medium walk
7.0 (x2): “willing to stretch”

good boy

10. C: Working trot
7: “prompt and accurate”

11. E: Circle left 20m
7.0: “steady and active”

12. F-X-H: Change rein
6.5: “could be steady in the bridle”

Levi really thinks crossing the diagonal means canter, so I’ll take some unsteadiness if we stay in the correct gait

13. Between C & M :Working canter right lead
4.0: “wrong lead”

You can’t see it, but my face says I will murder you

14. B: Circle right 20m
6.0 (x2): “good correction but above bit”

so sassy

15. Between B & F: Working trot
6.0: “above bit”

16. A: Down centerline
X: Halt, salute
6.5: “almost square”

Thank cod it’s over

4.0 “Too many wrong leads.Good for you to correct the last wrong lead.”
5.0 “too many uncorrected wrong leads”
Final comment: ”Stunning horse! Keep up the training. Be patient.”

Final Score: 56.34%

Levi had his ass schooled in the warm up after that until we could get both leads correctly and on command. I’m really sick of having this same error again and again and again at shows. A trainer who was watching suggested doing a lot of walk to canter transitions to make it easier for him to learn his leads. I can see the value in that, but he already thinks everything is a cue for canter so I really hesitate to let him do walk to canter on purpose for fear that’ll only strengthen that desire.

12 thoughts on “JK Presents Schooling Show – Dressage Part II

  1. Amanda C

    I’ve had a couple like Levi that were so sensitive that any little thing with my position would change their balance and cause them to pick up the wrong lead, simply because they thought that’s what I was asking for. Like dropping my inside shoulder, looking down, or leaning to the inside in particular. I had to experiment with canter cues and be VERY diligent about a) making sure their haunches were slightly to the inside before I asked b) making sure that I was not inadvertently putting them off balance or mis-cuing them by doing something contradictory with my body/hands. Just something to think about, looking at your pictures. He’s such a handsome dude, even with the sass tail!

    1. Olivia Post author

      He is way too sensitive. He thinks any mistaken movement on my part is a cue for canter. Or sidestepping. Or something. And I’m a fairly floppy rider so he suffers for that. I know the canter thing is partly my fault, but we can the correct lead when we’re schooling so I need to figure out what I am doing differently or what he is doing differently in a show court. We go into the arena and it all goes out the window.

  2. Stacie Seidman

    Other than the canter stuff, his trot work mostly looked great! I think the final comment is pretty right on. I know how frustrating it can be when they do stuff wrong at the show over and over, especially when it generally happens correctly at home. But I think that’s just his greenness still showing.

  3. Suzy

    Cupid recently decided he only wants to canter on the right, which is bad enough, but yeah getting both leads wrong would drive me nuts! It definitely kills your score in T2 with the 2x coefficient.
    Eugene did good aside from not stretching!

  4. the_everything_pony

    Amber definitely thinks that after a certain amount of time (trotting both directions) it is now canter time and every cue is a canter cue. But she’s gotten better about it when I’ve worked on transitions so she’s had to listen to my cues (voice and leg) and get the right one or else she’s stopped and backed. I’ve found that avoiding transitions with her made it worse. Just perhaps some food for thought. He still looked gorgeous tho, even with that sassy tail! lol

    1. Olivia Post author

      When I did hutners in college, some of them were like that because they knew how the flat classes ran. Levi thinks it’s canter time from the start. Like we walk and then it is canter time. He’s stronger in canter than trot and would prefer to just do that.

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