So, we went to the show. My ride times had changed. The first test was about 20 minutes earlier and the second test was about a half-hour later. Fortunately, the day stayed pretty cool with cloud cover all day and the threat of rain.
Tucker acted up in the warmup, unnerving me for a few minutes as he reverted to his old threatening to buck behavior. I gritted my teeth and rode him through it until the canter when he did let fly with a few kickouts. Finally he settled in and I had a reasonably good session before the first test.
Once in the big ring, he decided the dressage markers were a bit scary, but that was all and he got over that quickly. The whistle blew and in we went. Halt on the center line, nice. Trot off, diagonal lengthened trot, OK. 10 circle to leg yield, nice. Next diagonal OK. Next circle and leg yield, good. Walk, excellent. Then a bit of bobble going into the trot as he broke early to canter. Canter circle, fine. Canter lengthening--I loved it. Shallow serpentine counter canter, just fine. Change of lead across diagonal, OK and all the exercises on the other lead, as good as the first. Back to the trot, then a trot stretch circle and the final halt steady and square. I was a happy camper.
We earned a 58.4% and a 5th place. My confusion comes from the judge's score of the canter lengthening at 5 with no comment as to why. The felt great! He didn't think so. Oh well.
Long wait to second test. Warmup was a goofy as the first time. This time, though, the kinks didn't quite work out. Either Tucker was tired or a bit fed up because he didn't really relax. He did feel good at the trot, but the canter was dicey. Then, on the second canter lengthening, he bucked, threw in a flying change and I had to bring him back to the trot to put him back on the correct lead for the diagonal cross. I was frustrated because there were only two horses in the class and it would have been nice to have done a good job and been in the running for First Place.
Well, I won anyhow.....Don't hold your breath. The other rider scratched, so I was the only one in the class. Bue ribbon by default and a 53.4% on the test. The judge's comment, "Sweet horse but on the forehand throughout."
Funny, he didn't feel on the forehand. So now I am completely confused again as to how he needs to go.
I have the summer to work it out as I am not planning another show until September. Well, I may find a little show to go in, but nothing significant. I need to sort out the training issues and get him going to his potential.
Hey, at least I didn't melt in the heat that wasn't there!
Chance looked almost sound tonight. I am getting more convinced it is muscular. I am going to leave him in for at least two weeks, though, hopefully giving it time to heal.
I am worn out. Nap is looking awfully tempting.