Our dressage competition day dawned very wet and stayed that way all morning. The idea of a well turned out pony seems a bit ludicrous when faced with a hairy monster covered in wet mud but I did my best and I don’t think we disgraced ourselves. In fact the weather helped us a bit – the lake had reappeared at the end of our lane so Galahad’s feet got a good clean before he was loaded. We had to walk over the field through the mud to get to the trailer so I was very pleased with that!
The drive to the event was interesting to say the least. It was still pouring with rain and there were puddles over most of the road. The windscreen was covered with water every time we went through one and our main topic of conversation was how mad we all were for going. That and wondering if anyone else would show up.
When we arrived it took us a few minutes to summon the enthusiasm to actually get out of the car but once we got moving the weather didn’t seem so awful. The warm up ring was partially underwater so we went for a short hack instead and just spent the ten minutes before my test in the ring.
Galahad felt much more relaxed than he has done before and he walked straight into the indoor school with no trouble. He had a bit of a look at the people by the gate but the ones actually in the seats were no bother. Our first test (Intro A) went quite well. Galahad felt more forward than last time and my instructor said it was very accurate which was cheering – it is good to make the most of what we have!
Galahad had a short break (back in the trailer – although the rain was starting to ease off) before we had to be ready for Prelim 12. This is the one I was worried about as I hadn’t been able to ride it through properly. I started off by almost forgetting the first trot across the diagonal and then I did actually forget the half circle in free walk. I was riding two half circles and I knew I would be going the wrong way for the canter but had no idea where I was going wrong. In the end I decided I must be wrong about the canter, picked up trot and got shouted at by my instructor. After that I was fine! Luckily it was quite a low key event and other people had been having tests read for them.
By this point Galahad was rather tired. I haven’t clipped him yet because I can only ride twice a week at the moment so he was getting a bit warm. As soon as the mornings get light enough to ride before work he will be having a haircut. Also, he is not as fit as usual – again because I can only ride twice a week! He was starting to slow down and our canter work was not all it could be but I was still very pleased with the way he went.
I was even better pleased when the results were up. We managed a second in the Intro and fourth in the Prelim with 68.3% and 62% respectively so I was thrilled. One of the comments was, ‘A cracking pony,’ which I thought was lovely. We had a brilliant day.