While the year is over as far as competing goes, it is also in full swing. If that is supposed to make any sense? We have finished the year and all the scores have been tallied, prizes handed out and the party over and done. Since our weather rocks this time of year- we are still working towards getting ready for next season.
Kicking off in January is our first ADT of the series. I have already paid our membership for next year and am eagerly awaiting to see how we do since we have to move up. Our scores in dressage, the hazards and cones have been pretty much right in the middle of the pack for last years TL ponies. But since every show, every judge and sometimes every day is different- we could have a stellar, average or abismal year ahead of us. We just have to do our best and see how it plays out.
At the moment I am still searching for the perfect bit. The right one will make a big difference, or at least a better one will be an improvement. Looking at the photos from the Darby, I am not liking what seems to be a strong hold and what felt like at times a strong horse. Since Kat was going to be running, I went with the butterfly. I can usually signal him with the lightest of cues, feathering the reins with my little finger. Since driving can be the same as riding- your cues should be light and subtle. Sometimes I feel the butterfly is a bit too much.
On the other hand we have the snaffle. While he should be quiet and soft enough to work in that, be it at home or away- his mind slips out of his head at times and any kind of control can be a pipe dream. In long lines he is great in the snaffle. Driving in it can be iffy on a few levels. I am looking for something in between.
Part of the problem is also me. I can be heavy handed when he is being a twit and although I thought I was being light with the reins on course at the Darby- the photos show a different story. My rein length is good at times, while at others, he is gaping at the mouth and being a bit too forward. Sometimes he was also being a little hesitant to slow down, while others he was racing along like a Crazy Pony!
It is all a matter of what is going on at the moment and when, but where he is bieng a bit forward and charging on, while gaping at the mouth- he should be slowing down some and have his mouth closed- accepting the tugs as cues and responding accordingly. Seems we have some walking exercises ahead of us and will be working for a while at bringing it all back under control before we can reasonably move on. To read: Back into long lines and back to walking only- as if we were starting out again.