I finally feel like we are actually approaching spring! The sun has been shining a lot more lately, the snow is mostly melted everywhere, and I got to go on a little hack on the grass track at the barn. Not to mention that the first show of the event season, a combined test, is only a month away!
While we have been stuck in the indoor for the last few months, we have had plenty to work on and I haven't been bored at all this winter. We're still taking regular dressage lessons and Ben has improved leaps and bounds over where he was last fall. He is so much more responsive, is starting to take weight on his hind end instead of dragging himself around on his forehand, and his canter no longer resembles a runaway freight train. I'm very much looking forward to seeing how our dressage tests go this season.
While we have been having a pretty quiet winter, I did take Ben to a couple jumper shows at the Westbrook Hunt Club over the past few weeks and he has been fantastic! The first one I took him to he placed third, second, and second and was Reserve Champion. The most recent one I took him to, about two weeks ago, he won all three classes and was Champion. He is also currently tied for first in the overall series standings after only attending two of five shows, so if he behaves himself at the last one this Sunday he has a shot at taking Grand Champion.
Here's some videos from the shows (for some reason, YouTube will not let me embed the videos, so if you click on the links below, they will take you to the videos):
I've also updated the 2014 show schedule to reflect what I know so far about our season. We'll attend the last jumper show of the winter on March 23rd, then we're going to head to the Course Brook Farm Combined Test on April 19th, at Training as long as we get a couple of at height jump schools in before that, otherwise we'll just do Novice. I'm also hoping the weather/ground will be good enough to get in a xc school there as well.
The first full event will be King Oak on May 11th, at Novice. I'm currently trying to decide between Mystic Valley Hunt Club or the Stoneleigh-Burnham Schooling Trials for another Novice run at the end of May. Assuming those two outings go well, we'll head to Larkin Hill in June to contest the Training/Novice and then hopefully run Training at Riga Meadow in July. That's as far as I've gotten at this point, and I have many backup plans in case Plan A doesn't work out for whatever reason.
I can't wait to get back into the swing of eventing season so I actually have some more to write about and can get back to blogging more regularly! As always, thanks for reading!