2015 Show Season In Review
This was one hell of a year for Dino and I! It was an exciting time full of ups and downs, and I learned so much - not just about eventing, but about myself and my pony. So, what did we accomplish in 2015, and what's in store for next year?
May - Bucks County Horse Park Starter Trial - Elementary
We started off the season at our 'home turf' of Bucks, earning a score of 36.8 in dressage, a double-clear stadium round, and one silly stop on cross country to land us in 8th place. Not our greatest effort ever, but a fine way to knock the dust off and get going.
June - Flora Lea Starter Trial - Elementary
This HT is where Dino and I really came into our own as eventers! With a 39.5 in dressage, a super-fun stadium course over tiny sticks on the ground, and a PHENOMENAL double-clear XC run, we finished on our dressage score for 4th place. Definitely my favorite show all season!
July - Bucks County Horse Park Starter Trial - Beginner Novice
I made the decision to move up to BN, and while the cross country course scared the ever-loving crap out of me, I soldiered on and completed - landing in 4th place even with 2 stops on XC. A double-clear SJ round and 37 in dressage rounded out the day.
July - Bucks County Horse Park Schooling Dressage Show - BN Tests A & B
It was stupid hot, Dino was not feeling it, I was dying of heat exhaustion, and we scored in the low 40's on both tests. I am not sure where we placed at this show, as everyone was so hot and miserable we did not wait for ribbons to be pinned before going home!
August - Bucks County Horse Park Starter Trial - Beginner Novice
This show was the turning point in my season in a lot of ways. We scored our personal best in dressage with a 33, and then I had an absolute meltdown of a panic attack in stadium and got us eliminated at the 5th fence. While I was allowed to continue on to cross country for schooling purposes, I froze in complete terror at the first jump and retired after I rode my pony to two run-outs before finally getting over the log. There was a lot of damage done to my confidence, but eventing is not a sport for quitters!
September - Burgundy Hollow Starer Trial - Beginner Novice
I had SO MUCH FUN at this show! It was relaxed, I felt no pressure, and was able to get my mojo back and ride my best. Dino and I scored a 37 in dressage, had a double clear stadium round, and completed cross country despite 3 refusals caused by an unfocused pony. We finished dead last, but I couldn't have been happier with our performance! Most importantly, I had a great time, I felt brave and confident, and I helped instill confidence in Dino.
October - Flora Lea Starter Trial - Beginner Novice
Our last outing of the season was a mixed bag, starting off with a 38.4 in the dressage and what was probably our most fun SJ course to date! Dino was a beast in the stadium ring and I had an absolute blast riding him to a double clear. Cross country was a complete trainwreck - I think the final refusal count was somewhere around 13 - but the important thing is that I never froze or panicked, and kept right on trying to the bitter end!
During the rest of 2015, I'm keeping it low key and focusing on things that will ultimately build confidence on the cross country course. We're going to be doing lots of trail riding, foxhunting, XC schooling, and hunter paces! Once the weather turns, I'll be doing whatever I can to keep us fit through the winter, and we'll hopefully be ready to come back swinging in the spring. I'm planning on a full season at Beginner Novice for 2016, with the determination to finish on our dressage score and get rid of those XC penalties for good! Thanks everyone for your support throughout this challenging season - I can't wait to share our new adventures with you all!