I took Faxx to a schooling show today to show First level again. He warmed up well and was nicely connected – his back was really up and his trot was easy to sit. It was windy and he had one spooking moment in the warm up arena when another horse spooked and went flying toward him. He settled right down and went back to work.
However, when we got in the competition arena — a place he’s been many times, he had two large spooks in our First 1 test. I got him right back after both spooks. He still managed to get a 67%.
I made a point to get him back in the show arena during a short break they had between my rides and he was fine. However, he spooked at something along one long side and for the rest of the test I could barely even get him around the corner or even make a halfway straight line down that long side. At one point, he just slammed on the brakes just past C and we had a small ‘discussion’ about him continuing around the corner and down the long side.
I have no real idea what exactly got him boogered — that is very, very unusual for him. He’s been shown a lot, and I don’t recall him ever spooking like that before. It was windy and there is a large vine that hangs from the top rail in part of the ring and it was blowing in the wind – so that could have been it. There were also many people sitting/standing right by the rail on that side. But who knows what horses spook at? They obviously see things (monsters, ghosts, ghouls, lions, tigers, etc. etc) we don’t see!!
So, his score for that ride was a 53% – a world record low for him. I will say we managed to use almost all the numbers in the scale except for 0, 2, 9 and 10!! LOL!
Now I am really hoping this is not just some new evasion he’s dreamed up — but I don’t think so. He worked very well in the warm up arena. But I am a little worried about the Regional championships, since he will be showing in an arena he’s never shown in before, and I will have a very small window of opportunity to get him in there before our test.