I was so pleased to have late times for the dressage, I knew I could get to lie in bed for an extra hour and still get Shadow ready and get to Moorhouse in plenty of time. It never quite works out like that does it? Oh no!!! We left in plenty of time with Shadow looking beautifully plaited, but because some roads were closed with diversions, we ended up a little late!!! How annoying!!!
Mum went to double check the times only to find that the junior section was over and places and rosettes along with qualifications had already been handed out. She went to the secretary and it turned out that due to a mix up, I'd been entered with the adults. My mum said not to worry, even though the judge wouldn't realise I was a junior because I'm taller than mum (well most people are) she'd expect me to hold my own with the adults anyway.
I had nervous butterflies in my belly, my heart battering my ribs and yes my shivers again. I sat reading and rereading the tests trying to make sure I'd learned them properly in the little time I had. We tacked up quickly, I was legged up and I was ordered straight in at a trot. Because we'd worked on shortening Shadows frame and getting her working more sharply off my leg the week before with Hannah Moody, Shadow was a lot more uphill and shorter in her frame quite quickly, she felt great but almost too soon we were in.
I gave her trot around around at tthe top of the arena waited for the bell and then made a huge mistake with my first centre line, I was so worried that I asked her to go in from a really sharp angle. I remember trying to keep her in the frame and forward while concentrating to hear what mum was saying. In the test Shadow did a huge spook just before A and then because we had to start a circle and then canter between X and A she did another one making the transition really messy too. I tried the best I could, and I felt completely deflated. It had all felt so tense and slow, and I know Shadow was doing her best for me, yet when I think back on the actual test, it just seems to blur. Mum was really pleased and kept giving me thumbs up and grinning at me!!!
I had to wait an hour for my next class - Novice 30 to start (I'd just done the prelim) My mum disappeared, while I was feeding Shadow some mints and I thought she'd gone to get a cuppa when suddenly she came back with a sheet and a rosette. The rosette said......... 2nd!!! We'd qualified for the finals! Wupee! yay!!! I jumped up and threw my arms around Shadows neck and gave her the whole packet of mints.
I felt a lot happier going into the novice test, I made sure I got my centre line right this time, but I think Shadow was starting to feel a little tired. She'd worked so well in the first test giving me her all, that the 2nd felt reallt flat. She'd gone back to feeling like she was using me as a 5th leg, and I think I was starting to get tired too because I felt that I couldn't do anything about it. She still gave me some really good moments and I'm so proud of her. No spooks this time but she just didn't have the energy to lengthen.
This time after making the girl comfortable with her rug and haynet we sat and watched the Elementary class eating lunch while we waited for the scores. Eventually we went to check andsaw that the rosettes and sheets had been ut out on the table. I looked for my sheet and couldn't see it at first, then I saw it, we had come...........1st!!! We qualified for the finals at Novice too!!! I was so pleased, I tell you what, Shadow was treated like an absoloute princess! My little princess was so good! I'm so proud, I love her so much! Mum says that quite often when a test feels like it wasn't so good, it's not actually that bad. Shadow must have made sure it looked much better than it felt.
A big thank you to mum, the Moorhouse team, and the judge xxx and of course my super amazing sponsors The Emporium at Wentworth and Stone House Solutions
x xoxo showjumperchick