April 27, 2009

Waikanae ODE: Dicky

Loaded up 3 yesterday morning to head up to Waikanae Park for an ODE. Got there nice and early to secure a park in the park rather than on the road. The rain kept away for most of the day as well - and when it did hit it was mainly showers, so not too unpleasant.
It was my first competition outing on Dickson. Because he's been going so great being ridden around other horses in show atmosphere I really wasn't expecting any issues with him, and he started his warmup lovely. But he did get a bit anxious and then stressed himself out. When he was behaving his did some really nice work in the arena.
And he is a lovely ride when he's focused on you. But there were a few times when he just got too upset and would take a good few strides to calm down again. Walking back to the truck (ages away from the fancy new arenas - and past half of the cross country course) was an interesting experience!
He settled as soon as we got back to the truck, and wanted his cuddles. For the showjumping I thought I'd better be on the safe side and put my back protector on - as well as a monkey strap to grab. Didn't end up needing either, as he was perfectly behaved even in the more crowded warmup area. He got a bit goey in between some of his fences, but did come back well because he has a nice soft mouth.
He was super on the cross country. Still a little horrified that we were out doing these funny solid jumps with people standing beside them! But once he got into his stride he was sweet. The 2 pics below are a combination on a downhill, which was a bit tricky but he just flew it. He also happily jumped the corner and palisade and a whole bunch of other things.
He was very unsure about going into the water and did the smallest little steps to get in, but he kept his forward momentum and once in the water he was more than happy to jump back out!
He gave me a really good ride on the XC, and I'm pleased with how the day went for him. We posted a score and he behaved after his initial little tantrum. I think from here he just needs more mileage, so will hopefully get him out midweek, then his owner can ride him at a show in the weekend.
Dicky was a very tired boy by the time we got home and was stoked to go out in the big paddock with the other boys.