I added a calendar at the side of the blog here, and as you can see, the 5th ADT in the series was this weekend. What a blast! They are similar to the CDE's only it is all in one day instead of spaced out over three. First up you have dressage, followed by cones, then a break for lunch and then it is a free for all on the obstacles.
What cracked me up the most was the end. When everything was said and done, it was almost a race to throw everything in the truck or trailer and SCRAM! People came off the course and seemed to unhitch in record time, pack it all up, throw it in and bail. We did the same thing because we had no trailer lights. NONE! Before we had all running lights, all of the time so I had thought it wise to buy a new plug the day before and try to have brake lights and turn signals. Instead what we got was no lights at all and locked up brakes. Fun, fun, fun. We are not sure if it is the truck, the trailer or both, but something is obviously not wired right.
We got a late start and headed up without issue. I had hoped to get up there early enough for a lesson with Gary, but it wasn't in the cards. I did have time to walk the cones course a couple of times, walk my dressage test and also walk each hazard twice. By then it was pretty dark, we were tired and hungry so we headed into town to the hotel for the night.
Our order of go was given and we were to be on course in the dressage arena at 9:50, but when I got down there things were running a little behind and it was more like 10 am. No big deal, I had worked Kat on the way down to the arena, but still needed to work him a tad more. There was plenty of time and space to work him so we did some circles in both directions, changes of rein in the center of our figure eights and he was really responding well. I called it good and parked him near a friend of ours Meg with her pony Jose to wait our turn.
We scored a 54.844 overall which isn't bad. I haven't looked at the training pony scores yet to compare, but I do know one of them also scored a 54.0 something. This was her pony's first outing and they did really well. Cute little bay mare and Kat was in love... We did Test 2
Anyways our lowest scores were for our entry and exit. Awesome huh? Enter at A, working trot, halt at X. Simple enough and oh so bad... We entered at A all right- at a canter! With me checking the reins and scolding Kat to bring it back down. I must have corrected it under the allowed '5 strides' because we weren't nailed too harshly, and those awesome stops we have at home? My brakes completely FAILED at X.
I asked for the halt as his nose would have reached X, but by the time we stopped, amid the huge dust cloud- he was off to the left and I believe the cart was sitting over the top of the markers for X. I had to haul him in with the reins to the point, I pulled myself off the back of the seat, he had his chin to his chest and as I swore and repeated my request for 'whoa', he seemed to fold up into nothing before he finally stopped. The 4 (Insufficient) we were granted for this- I feel it was a gift. Talk about a first impression! I rolled my eyes, took a breath before I saluted and went about finishing the test.
We managed to pull off a 5, a 6, several 7's and our extended walk brought in an 8 as well as our trot from B down the left side of the arena, turn at A up the centerline to X. When we picked up the working trot at C again, right in front of the judge, her comment was Prompt trot! All I had to do was say the word and we were off and moving.
Our halt at X again was better this time. He was still a little off center but he did stop when asked. He stood for the 3-5 seconds, and backed up on his own when I said back up. It wasn't exactly straight, but he did it. For this movement we received the 5 (Marginal).
We walked forward to G to halt and salute. He wobbled and staggered back and forth. Kat stopped, but did not relax or stand still. He figeted and wiggled, squirming all over the place. I asked for whoa about 3 times before giving up, saluting a leaving at the trot. We were gifted a 3 for that one. I asked Kat what was up? Because his stops today in the ring were for total shit. My friends standing by the rail were clapping and laughing as I stuck my tongue out and blew them a raspberry. I had hoped they had caught that on film, but they didn't and later when I asked them about it we all had a good laugh.
It seems everyone's horse had a different idea of things and a few of them had a bug up their ass about something. The one horse had no gears. He stopped and that was it. His driver really had to get after him to get him to move. Another horse did everything fine up until the last halt, salute. Which is where he spun to the left and trotted out of the arena of his own accord. He had decided he was done. Another horse halted and spun to the left in the blink of an eye. He was facing the judge and suddenly was not. I am just glad at this point it wasn't just us having an 'off day'...