Monday, December 6, 2010

NATRC Christmas at the Ranch 2010

Well, this was my first time I have ridden this ride as I have been ride secretary a few times and a go-fer one year. So it was a different feeling being on the other side of things at this years ride. I did help decorate the barn last weekend before the ride with Alanna and Liz so that was fun as I love to decorate. But to sit and just be a competitor had a weird but nice feeling about it.

I took off Thursday to get things done that I hadn't got done during the week to get ready to leave Friday morning. Lucky me, the ride is only 40 miles or so from my barn. Anyway, Friday I got to the ranch and set up my camp site, then saddled Summer and went on a 3 mile hack. We walked mostly and cantered a bit just so I could see where her head was for the competition. She was great.

At check in with the judges she was a good girl. Not fidgety or anything like some other horses were. Some just wouldn't stand still and made me nervous when their rear ends got way to close to the judges secretaries table. I am sure points were docked for that. Anyway, after the vet judge checked her in, I was to go to a horse trailer and tie a quick release for lead ropes with the horsemanship judge.

Saturday morning was okay. We timed out the head of the CP/Novice pack but that didn't help. Apparently, someone had switched the horse I rode Friday for an evil twin. I thought it was Summer, but apparently I had been had! She was very forward, too forward for what I would call a nice ride. But, she was a gaiting machine. She was SMOOTH....My only true complaint was she seemed to me, to rush through the obstacles. But I only lost 1 point on Saturday from the horsemanship judge for backing crooked up the hill. Summer lost 1 point from the vet judge at the side pass on the hill obstacle.

On Sunday, someone had come to my trailer in the middle of the night Saturday night and switched Summer back with her evil twin. So my Sunday ride was AWESOME! I rode with Sue and her molly mule, Sugar. They paced very well together. Sugar's dam is a TWH so there were no problems with them keeping up with each other. And Summer's Sunday obstacles were just flawless. The horse I rode Saturday reminded me to appreciate the horse I rode Sunday! There are still minor things on the obstacles we still need to work on, nothing that we had to do this weekend tho, just future ones we might encounter. But mostly, I need to work on her conditioning and getting that right so that someday my girl will finally get a NATRC blue ribbon.

So I finished the weekend with a Horsemanship score of a 99 and second place out of 3 in my class. And trust me, the two ladies I was competing against are good. I just knew I was gonna get 3rd. Which I would have been fine with as long as I had a decent score on my card. Cause I try to remind myself, I am competing against myself, not the others. I really liked the horsemanship judge too. His name is Kim and was a very nice guy and eeriely looked just like my sorting instructor James. Sounded just like him too. It was just weird. But they say, everyone has a twin.

Summer however, lost 15 points from her metabolics over the weekend. The judge is a AERC judge and they are very metabolicly conscience. I was glad for her judging as it showed me what we needed to work on and how to fix some of the little issues Summer was having over the weekend. And besides, Tamara is a super nice lady. And I would like to thank her too as she is a reserve, in the Army I believe, and is about to be deployed for a year. Thank you Tamara!

Summer received 3rd with a score of an 84. But I must remember, we haven't competed in NATRC in about a year and eight months. Now we just have to get ready for the next one which is in March.

All in all, I had a great weekend. Great horse, great company, great conversation and great food.
Can you tell I had a great time! LOL

Thanks for reading!


1 comment:

Wolfie said...

Wow. This competitive trail riding is quite the event. I had no idea. You and Summer are quite a team. Congratulations on your 2nd and 3rd placements!